According to a recent press release from Bridgestone, select Firestone Complete Auto Care and Wheel Works service centers will begin to offer advanced services to electric and hybrid vehicle owners. The company will also be adding charging stations at several locations.
At this point, the EV services are only set to be implemented at locations in Austin, Texas, and San Francisco, California. However, Bridgestone aims to install 50 Level 2 charging stations at 25 different Firestone locations in the first quarter of 2022. The plan is part of a partnership with Blink Charging.
The charging stations will be installed at various Firestone locations where electric car volume and growth are the strongest. The company says it's focusing on Austin, Denver, Los Angeles, and San Francisco for the new charging stations.
Bridgestone is one of just many companies that are taking note of the increase in and making plans to move toward the future. The company notes that while EVs only make up less than 10 percent of its current services, demand is growing, and it's time to plan ahead. Bridgestone shared:
"It is estimated that battery electric and hybrid vehicles will represent more than half of the overall U.S. car parc by 2030. Moreover, the number of electric vehicle models in the U.S. is expected to increase from 50 in 2019, to more than 200 available electric vehicle models by 2026."
While Bridgestone already offers services related to low-voltage systems, it's now training employees and implementing new safety measures for the high-voltage systems.
The new electric-vehicle-related services at locations in Austin and San Francisco will include "inspections, diagnostics, maintenance and repairs involving high-voltage components, including health checks and troubleshooting for batteries, electric motors and electrical systems."
President of Bridgestone Retail Operations Marko Ibrahim said:
“It’s an exciting time to be in the automotive service industry as mobility evolves to be cleaner and more sustainable. We truly believe what’s good for society is good for business, which is why we are increasing our investments in plug-in vehicle services in two key markets with plans to expand further in the future. The steps we take now will ensure we are the service provider of choice for new-energy vehicles.”