Purchase advice for charging cables for electric vehicles

Which EV charging cable do I need?

You have an electric car or a plug-in hybrid and are therefore looking for a cable set, but are not sure what you need? Would you like to buy an electric car and learn more about charging cables?

Well, the first thing you should know is that OSRAM's full copper EV charging cables deliver consistent charge rates for all electric/hybrid vehicles and are durable and waterproof (IP65) to deal with various types of weather. They are IK10 certified to withstand tough conditions.

The next steps are to understand your vehicle and how you will charge it.

Let's go through a few questions:

There are two terms to understand here – Type 1 and Type 2.

A vehicle has either a Type 1 or Type 2 charging connector. Check your vehicle manual to find out which type you need.

You can also look at the vehicle connection point as follows:

  • Type 1 sockets have 5 pin locations
  • Type 2 sockets have 7 pin locations

Type 1, 5 pin locations

Type 2, 7 pin locations

The other plug on the charging cable is for the charging point. Public charging stations use a Type 2 plug or have a tethered cable attached to the charging station. Dedicated EV charging stations at home will also be Type 2. For this reason, all of our cables have a Type 2 connector for the end of the cable with the charging station.

When you look at a description for a cable, it refers to the charging station plug first, followed by the vehicle plug.

  • Do you have an e-charging station at home?
  • Do you use public charging points?
  • Do you want to charge via a standard 3-pin mains plug?

Of course, the answer could eventually be all three.

However, if you think you will be charging at home or in the office and there is no dedicated EV charging point, you will need cables that can charge via a standard 3-pin connector. These cables are known as portable charging cables. Simply select the cable with the vehicle connector type that matches your vehicle's charging socket - Type 1 or Type 2.

If you charge from home or work with a dedicated EV charging station and use public charging stations, you also need to know more about charge rates – please also see question 3 below.

Portable charger with Type 1 vehicle plug,

Portable charger with Type 2 vehicle plug,

The Vehicles Battery Management System (BMS)

Different charging points have different power supplies, for example:

  • The household power supply that most of us have in our homes is single phase - this supplies up to 3.6 kW.
  • By installing a charging wallbox at home, a single-phase output can be increased up to 7.2 kW.
  • Commercial power supply is known as three phase. Based on an AC supply, this increases the charging rate up to 22 kW.
  • Typically any charge point above 22kW will be direct power (DC). Rates vary and are classified as fast charging points (e.g. 50 kW, 150 kW). Most DC charging points have tethered cables to ensure they are compatible with higher charging rates. Therefore, you must use the cable connected to the charging point.

The vehicle's Battery Management System (BMS) determines which charge rates are compatible. The BMS protects the vehicle from overcharging by limiting the charging rate to match the vehicle's charging specification.

AC (alternating current) charging stations

The OSRAM range of EV charging cables is designed for AC charging up to 22 kW.

In an EV charging station at home, the charging power is regulated at 3.6 kW and 7.2 kW, which corresponds to an output power of 16 amps or 32 amps. These rates are based on a single-phase (1-phase) power supply. The difference between the two is the loading speed – see examples in the table:

Example charging times for single phase AC power supplies

Battery size16 A (phase 1) EV charging cable max. output 3.6kWH32 A (phase 1) EV charging cable max. output 7.2kWH
30kWH8 hours4 hours
60kWH16 hours8 hours
90kWH24 hours12 hours

Choosing the right charging speed cable is crucial to ensure you can take advantage of faster charging speeds. Using a 16A cable with a 32A charging point limits the charging speed to 3.6kW as the vehicle's BMS controls the charging process to protect the vehicle.

The OSRAM cable options if you have a single-phase 16A home charger with a maximum power of 3.6kW.

16A charging cable with a Type 1 vehicle plug

16A charging cable with a Type 2 vehicle plug

The OSRAM cable options if you have a single-phase 32A domestic charging station with a maximum output of 7.2 kW or want to use faster domestic charging tariffs in the future.

32A charging cable with a Type 1 vehicle plug

32A charging cable with a Type 2 vehicle plug

If you also have the option of charging at work, this is referred to as a three-phase power supply from the commercial sector. Based on an AC supply, this increases the charging rate up to 22kW, which is 3x faster than single phase, so 3x faster charging. If you want to take advantage of the increased charging speed of a commercial AC power supply, you will need a 32A three-phase (3-phase) cord.

Whether you need a replacement cable or spare cable, we recommend you select the best cable to take advantage of the faster charging rates available to you as the charging time saved is significant.

Example charging times for Single Phase and Three Phase AC power supplies

Battery size16 A (phase 1) EV charging cable max. output 3.6kWH32 A (phase 1) EV charging cable max. output 7.2kWH32 A (phase 3) EV charging cable Mmax output 7.2kWH
30kWH8 hours4 hours1.5 hours
60kWH16 hours8 hours3 hours
90kWH24 hours12 hours4.5 hours