Electric vehicles (EVs) extend their utility beyond mere conveyance by doubling as dynamic energy reserves. This capability has prompted automakers to explore avenues to harness this value for economic gain and consumer energy cost reduction.
Volvo has joined the ranks of major car manufacturers diving into the energy sector, with the introduction of Volvo Cars Energy Solutions. Announced on Thursday, this new venture will focus on delivering energy management and charging solutions.
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Meanwhile, Mercedes-Benz and Tesla have been at the forefront of integrating automotive and energy sectors, having launched Mercedes-Benz Energy and Tesla Energy in 2015. General Motors has also entered the fray with GM Energy, signaling a broader industry trend towards leveraging EV battery technology.
A prospective popular feature is the ability of an EV’s battery to supply household electricity during peak tariff times, subsequently recharging during cheaper, off-peak periods or via solar energy. Additionally, these batteries could offer a contingent power supply during outages, such as those caused by severe weather events.
Volvo Cars Energy Solutions
The forthcoming 2024 EX90 electric mid-size SUV, expected to hit the market next year, will be the first Volvo model equipped with bidirectional charging hardware. Coupled with progressive software enhancements, this technology will enable the vehicle to optimally redistribute electricity to the home or power grid, particularly where there are incentives for energy contribution. Volvo also cites potential network cost savings for energy companies due to diminished infrastructure demands.
The software will be calibrated to maintain a minimum battery charge, ensuring the vehicle’s availability for driving needs. In Europe, where average daily travel consumes less than 10 kWh and 90% of journeys require under 20 kWh, the requisite reserve can be relatively low.
Volvo’s nascent energy division is set to commence as a pilot in Gothenburg, Sweden, the company’s base of operations. This initiative will see collaboration with Göteborg Energi Nät and will directly involve consumer participation. Should the pilot meet its objectives, Volvo anticipates scaling the program throughout Sweden and eventually extending it to other nations.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Volvo Energy Business
What is Volvo Cars Energy Solutions?
Volvo Cars Energy Solutions is a new venture by Volvo focusing on energy management and charging solutions, leveraging the capabilities of electric vehicle batteries as energy storage systems.
How do electric vehicles contribute to household energy management?
Electric vehicles can contribute to household energy by supplying electricity during peak hours using the vehicle’s battery, which can be recharged during off-peak hours or with solar energy, reducing energy costs.
What is the significance of the 2024 EX90 in Volvo’s energy plans?
The 2024 EX90 is set to be the first Volvo vehicle equipped with the necessary hardware and software for bidirectional charging, allowing it to potentially power homes or return energy to the grid.
Will Volvo’s energy business extend beyond Gothenburg, Sweden?
Yes, Volvo intends to expand its energy business beyond Gothenburg, following a successful trial, potentially bringing the service to more regions in Sweden and internationally.
More about Volvo Energy Business
- Volvo Cars Official Announcement
- Electric Vehicles as Energy Storage
- Overview of the 2024 EX90 SUV
- Bidirectional Charging Explained
- Industry Trend Towards Automotive Energy Solutions