Cracker Barrel Adds More EV Charging Stations

Installs new eVgo units at Texas locations

LEBANON, Tenn.-- Cracker Barrel Old Country Store continues to drive its support of electric vehicle (EV) travel with the unveiling of high-powered rapid-charging eVgo Freedom Station sites at four locations in and around Dallas/Fort Worth.

NRG Energy Inc. recently completed the installations at Cracker Barrel stores in Burleson, Arlington, DeSoto and Mesquite, Texas. The new charging stations, available around the clock for eVgo network subscribers, are a significant part of NRG's plan to enhance its Texas network and provide more charging options and range confidence for EV owners.

"Cracker Barrel's proximity to interstate highways adds a reassuring layer of confidence as well as a high level of convenience for EV drivers," said Cracker Barrel president and CEO Sandra B. Cochran. "We were founded along interstate highways with the traveler in mind and, today, Cracker Barrel has evolved into an indelible part of the automotive travel experience. Participating in NRG's eVgo network fits with our traditional efforts to anticipate our guests' needs and, at the same time, allows us to contribute in a meaningful way to national interests regarding energy use."

Each eVgo Freedom Station located at Cracker Barrel includes one DC Fast charger, capable of delivering 30 miles of charge in 10 minutes, and one Level 2 charger that delivers up to 25 miles of range for every hour plugged in.

With the DC Fast charger, Cracker Barrel guests will essentially be able to fill up in about the same time it takes to order and eat a meal.

"One of the challenges for EV drivers is overcoming range anxiety, much the way early cell phone users worried about running out of power," added Cochran. "Cellphone users now easily keep their phones charged at a high level throughout the day and, as the number of EV charging stations increases, more EV drivers will be able to keep their cars charged at a high level, too."

NRG plans to install a total of 70 Freedom Station sites in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and 50 in the Houston area, with 11 already in place in Houston and six installed in Dallas/Fort Worth. As the stations are installed, the company monitors their usage and gathers information to strategically place the remaining stations to sustain and grow the network.

"Cracker Barrel's participation in the NRG charging station project will create key links for EV drivers traveling around and between eVgo cities and will also generate important data to help us develop a well-connected infrastructure," said Arun Banskota, president of NRG Energy EV Services. "Cracker Barrel's interstate locations are a natural fit for eVgo Freedom Station sites and offer everything travelers need in one stop: food, power and fun."

Lebanon, Tenn.-based Cracker Barrel provides a friendly home-away-from-home in its old country stores and restaurants. It operates 615 company-owned locations in 42 states.

NRG Energy, Princeton, N.J., owns and operates one of the country's largest and most diverse power generation portfolios.