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ALTOONA, Pa. — Sheetz Inc. is in discussions with Tesla Motors Inc. about adding its electric vehicle (EV) charging stations at the Altoona-based retailer’s convenience stores.
"We've had discussions with them about putting their chargers in our stores," Michael Lorenz, Sheetz's executive vice president of petroleum supply, told The Washington Post. "We haven't done anything yet, but we're continuing those discussions."
Sheetz already has eight locations in Pennsylvania and North Carolina, where EV owners can charge their non-Tesla vehicles. Lorenz did not reveal how many Sheetz locations could be outfitted with Tesla chargers.
Tesla declined to comment when reached by the news outlet, but acknowledged in a statement that it is actively courting gas stations, hotels and restaurants in its bid to install high-speed electric chargers across the country.
EVs only account for less than half of one percent of new vehicle sales, but this number is expected to grow significantly in the future, in large part due to consumer desire to purchase Tesla vehicles. In fact, Bloomberg predicts one in every three new vehicle sales could be an EV by 2040.
As CSNews Online previously reported, Lorenz and Sheetz have been champions of renewable fuels and fuel alternatives. This dedication was rewarded by Convenience Store News when Lorenz won its 2015 Alternative Fuels Leader of the Year award. In addition to EV chargers, Lorenz was honored for his decision to offer E15, a blend of 15 percent ethanol and 85 percent gasoline, at 60 North Carolina Sheetz stores by this spring.
Sheetz operates more than 500 stores throughout Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Ohio and North Carolina.