DaveBDA wrote: ↑
Fri Jun 26, 2020 12:48 pm
There is an active electric vehicle rental market on Bermuda and there are a lot of charging stations available that have 220v (maybe it is 240v) outlets shaped like the standard British plug.
Can I use a UK to US adapter (just plug shape - not a transformer) to plug my i3 into these outlets and would it charge faster on these than on a standard 110 outlet?
No EV can be charged by merely plugging one end of a passive cable into an electrical outlet and the other end into the EV's charging port. There must be an electronics device between the outlet and charging port to perform negotiations with the EV's on-board charger (EVSE - electric vehicle supply equipment).
In some places including Europe and the U.K., public charging stations (EVSE's) do not include the cable that plugs into an EV's charging port. An EV owner must provide a passive cable that connects the charging station's outlet to the EV's charging port. If that's your situation, you'd need to provide a passive charging cable for this purpose which might be difficult to find because the charging ports on North American and the European EV's are incompatible.
However, if the outlet that you've described is merely an electrical outlet and not an EVSE outlet, you would need to plug in an EVSE like the 120 V Occasional Use Cable (OUC) included with an i3. However, this is only a 120 V device and would be fried if connected to a 230 V electrical outlet using merely a plug adapter. Using a transformer would probably not be a great idea because its capacity would need to be rated for a continuous 10 A or 12 A depending on which model i3 you have. That might be a heavier and/or larger transformer than you want to carry around.
There are a number of voltage-sensing portable EVSE's available for purchase in the U.S., but you'd have to change the power plug or use a plug adapter rated at a continuous 10 A or 12 A. If you bought a portable British EVSE with the correct plug, it would have an E.U. charging plug that's incompatible with the charging port on your U.S. i3.
An EVSE powered by 230 V would charge almost twice as fast as one powered by 120 V assuming the same current for both voltages.
My explanation is probably about as clear as mud
However, I hope that you're aware that you're probably running into the problems that result when importing a North American EV into a country that uses some British standards.