Wallboxes in test: Which charging station is the best for electric cars?

Posted by Christian Pfäffli on

What do you need to consider when you have a wallbox for the electric car? The automobile association in Germany, ADAC, has tested 18 commercially available home charging stations - and generally recommends a system with 11 kW charging power.

Eleven of the 18 wallboxes tested were rated "very good" or "good
Test winner 2019 is the HEIDELBERG Wallbox Home Eco (grade 1.1), test winner 2018 is the ABL eM H1 (grade 1.0).
Optimal is a 3-phase 11-kW wallbox, with which all-electric cars are well rechargeable. In the event of a fault, competent customer service should be available

Anyone who buys an electric car needs a charging station for use at home - a so-called wallbox. Wallboxes are usually available from the dealer who sells the electric car. But in the meantime, there are also many offers on the open market. Depending on charging capacity and equipment, a wallbox costs between 500 and 2500 euros. In online shops, some kits are even available for around 300 euros.

On top of that, there are always costs for the installation. Because the connection of a wallbox to the house net is absolutely nothing for hobbyists and may be implemented according to the valid legal regulations only by an electrician.

But can one trust the offered devices? We have tried it and subjected 18 models - with charging capacities from 3.7 kW to 22 kW - to a systematic comparison.

We tested their reliability when charging, their ease of use and their safety.

Supplier/Product 

max. charging capacity (no weighting) Price incl. Delivery & VAT (19%)  Additional residual current protection necessary ADAC verdict Security Reliability Operation
(weighting 20%) (weighting 40%) (weighting 40%)
HEIDELBERG Wallbox Home Eco 11 kW             599,00 € FI A

1,1

1,1

0,6

1,4

 1
WEBASTO Pure 11 kW             599,90 € FI A

1,2

1,2

0,9

1,4

 1
ESL Walli Light pro 11 kW             846,99 € FI A

1,6

1,6

0,6

1,4

 1
MENNEKES Amtron Start C2 2 11 kW             856,99 € FI B

1,6

1,6

0,7

1,4

 1
WALLBOX CHARGERS Pulsar 2 11 kW             835,99 € FI B

1,9

1,6

2,4

1,7

 1
PERDOK ecoLOAD 2 11 kW             489,00 € FI B

2,8

2,8

0,6

1,7

 1
ABL eM H1 11 kW             864,58 € -

1

1

0,6

1,3

 1
KEBA KeContact P30 4,6 kW             761,86 € FI A

1,3

1,3

0,6

1,3

 1
MENNEKES AMTRON Xtra 22 C2 22 kW          1 903,13 € -

1,4

1

0,6

2,3

 1
INNOGY eBox 2 11 kW             707,04 € FI B

1,6

1,6

0,6

1,3

 1
WALLBE Eco 2.0 3,7 kW             499,00 € FI A

1,7

1,7

0,6

1,4

 1
SCHNEIDER ELECTRIC EVlink 2 11 kW             964,67 € FI B

1,8

1,8

0,6

1,6

 1
EV ONESTOP WallPod 2 7,4 kW             385,76 € FI B

4,5

4,5

0,6

1,2

 1
VESTEL EVC02-AC3 2 3,7 kW             622,79 € FI B

4,5

4,5

0,6

1,9

 1
WALLBOX CHARGERS Commander 2 22 kW          1 285,37 € FI B

4,5

1,7

3,8

2,1

 1
ALFEN ICU Eve Mini 2 22 kW          1 378,00 € FI B

5

5

0,6

3,1

 1
ANNIES-CARPARTS Simple EVSE 2 11 kW             399,00 € FI B

5,5

5,5

0,6

1,2

 1
FRANZ RÖCKER SIMPLY EVSE Bausatz 2 11 kW             302,80 € FI B

5,5

5,5

0,6

1,1

 1

 

1 ADAC judgement cannot be better than the grade in the safety criterion
2 High additional costs due to missing but necessary DC fault protection (RCD B)

0,6 to 1,5 very well,  1.6 to 2.5 well, 2.6 to 3.5 satisfactory, 3.6 to 4.5 sufficient,  
from 4.6 defective

Important advice for consumers

  • The installation of a wallbox is necessarily the task of a qualified electrician!
  • A 3-phase 11 kW wallbox is recommended. This can charge electric cars in 1-phase, 2-phase and 3-phase "grid-supported" mode, i.e. in such a way that overloads of the power grid are avoided. It, therefore, does not require approval from the grid operator.
  • Less is more! Equipment that is not required can make operation more difficult.
  • A charging cable permanently attached to the wallbox is helpful. This increases comfort and the standard charging cable is always with you in the boot.
  • In case of a malfunction or defect, competent customer service should be available quickly.
  • Charging devices for electric vehicles with rated outputs > 3.6 kW must be registered with the grid operator.
  • Charging devices for electric vehicles whose total rated power exceeds 12 kW per customer system requires the prior assessment and approval of the grid operator.
  • Charging devices for electric vehicles with a rated power > 12 kW must have a possibility for control/regulation (e.g. in 10 % steps), intelligent time control or control devices for grid integration via interruptibility by the grid operator.
  • The subscriber must provide the grid operator with the completed "Datasheet for charging equipment for electric vehicles" for each charging equipment for electric vehicles that is subject to registration.
  • Fulfilment of the requirements for charging equipment for electric vehicles must be demonstrated by means of a declaration of conformity.

Source: ADAC

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