ELECTRIC car owners in Northwich can now charge their vehicles for free at the town’s Tesco Superstore.

Volkswagen and Tesco have partnered to provide the largest retail electric vehicle charging network in the UK – powered by Pod Point, giving drivers a place to charge their cars while doing their shopping.

The Tesco Superstore on Manchester Road has now been fitted with complimentary charging points and electric car owners can use the 7kW charging points for free. Drivers just need to download the Pod Point app, plug in the charger and confirm their charge.

The free charging points are a response to the growing demand for electric cars, with Volkswagen committed to help transform accessibility for such prospective owners.

It is part of a nationwide rollout which will see 2,400 charging points installed at up to 600 Tesco stores over three years – with all electricity used to charge cars generated from renewable sources.

Mike Taylor, new car sales manager at Johnsons Volkswagen Warrington, said: "Volkswagen is serious about e-mobility and we’re really excited about the arrival of our new ID.3 electric family hatchback, which will arrive in the UK later this year.

"Our partnership with Tesco and Pod Point is making electric car ownership even more attractive. Everyone loves a freebie and owners of any electric vehicle, whether it's a Volkswagen or not, can plug their car in and give it a charge.

"We’re delighted to be playing a role in boosting charging infrastructure.

"It is part of Volkswagen’s aim to improve electric vehicle ownership for all drivers and the initial response from motorists is really encouraging."

Recent figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) revealed registrations for electric vehicles are up by 175 percent this year.

Volkswagen currently offers the e-up! electric car and Passat GTE plug-in hybrid in the UK and is now taking orders for its new ID.3 family hatchback – a car they say will spawn a huge new range of pure electric cars of all shapes and sizes.

Jason Tarry, Tesco CEO UK & ROI, said: "We’re now well on our way to achieving our ambition of installing more than 2,400 charging bays across 600 Tesco stores.

"Providing customers with charging points offers them a sustainable choice and giving them the opportunity to charge their car for free while they shop is a little help to make this easier."

Erik Fairbairn, from Pod Point, added: "We’re really excited to be providing drivers in Northwich with more opportunities to charge while they shop.

"Working with Tesco and Volkswagen to roll out smart, easy-to-use chargepoints across the UK will help accelerate EV adoption."

It is estimated the average electric car owner will be able to get around 22.5 miles of free charge while plugging in for their weekly shop.