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(Pocket-lint) - If you own an electric car then you'll have encountered Ecotricity's Electric Highway, providing charging stations along most, if not all, of the UK's motorways. That network is about to see a huge redevelopment, thanks to a new partnership with Gridserve - the people behind that electric forecourt.

While the Electric Highway was on the scene early, it's attracted a lot of criticism recently. Some locations will only support charging for a single vehicle, there's some really slow chargers in some locations, the pumps were dated and payment fiddly.

Newcomers - like Tesla's Supercharger network and more recently Ionity - have eclipsed Ecotricity's offering, but it's hard to ignore the impact that the company has had on helping EVs across the UK's motorway network over the last decade.

The new partnership sees Gridserve taking a 25 per cent stake in the Electric Highway, bringing with it a whole load of new technology.

New pumps will be installed, in many cases replacing those single use pumps with a unit that offers three connectors - CCS, CHAdeMO and AC - and will allow charging of two vehicles at the same time.

It will also bring contactless payment technologies to those pumps - while the number of pumps available at sites will be expanded with the installation of new 350kW chargers.

Gridserve has said that the expansion will see 6-12 additional chargers installed at each location, which represents a pretty big expansion of the current offering.

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While some UK motorway service stations already have a healthy selection of Ionity chargers on site, expanding those Electric Highway installations at some of the more remote locations will be a huge lift for EV drivers.

The full roll-out hasn't yet been detailed, but Gridserve says that details will be revealed soon.

Writing by Chris Hall. Originally published on 12 March 2021.