The electric vehicle (EV) revolution is showing no signs of slowing down.
On Tuesday, BMW, Honda, and Ford announced a new joint venture called ChargeScape. The three automakers will each own a third of ChargeScape, which aims to improve the EV charging experience. ChargeScape seeks to establish a universal and cost-effective platform that connects electric utilities, automakers, and interested EV customers.
The primary objective is to develop a shared standard for integrating EVs with the grid. This would benefit vehicle owners, manufacturers, and utilities alike.
ChargeScape’s mission is to bring vehicle-to-grid (V2G) charging into the mainstream. V2G charging enables the grid to leverage stored EV battery energy during peak demand.
V2G also allows EV owners to potentially receive compensation for supplying energy to the grid. However, this would come at the expense of EV charging being limited to “grid-friendly” periods.
ChargeScape anticipates that, with efficient integration and high EV customer enrollment rates, these energy services will be a beneficial and budget-friendly solution for electric utilities. While similar to Tesla’s grid support using home energy storage, ChargeScape distinguishes itself with its emphasis on bidirectional V2G charging.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has expressed reservations about bidirectional charging, claiming that it could create major inconvenience for homeowners if not understood properly.
Many EVs have been equipped with V2G, vehicle-to-load, or vehicle-to-home charging capabilities. However, according to The Register, Tesla has not yet incorporated these features into its vehicles.
The three founding members of ChargeScape invite other automakers to participate and take advantage of the grid service offerings once ChargeScape is fully operational.
The Times They Are A-Changin’
The auto industry seems to still heavily favor internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. However, signs are emerging that suggest the end of the era for ICE cars.
Tesla is pushing for its charging technology to become the standard in North America. It’s encouraging automakers to move away from the Combined Charging System and embrace Tesla’s North American Charging Standard. Notably, Ford, GM, and the Society of Automotive Engineers have already committed to adopting Tesla’s technology.
To improve the EV charging network in the US, companies like General Motors, Hyundai, Kia, Mercedes, Stellantis, and others have announced a partnership to establish a nationwide network of 30,000 charging stations.
Even Honda, known for its slower embrace of EVs, is now part of the ChargeScape initiative. It has also joined forces with GM to produce EVs using GM’s Ultium battery platform.
These collaborations indicate a collective effort to establish standards and reap economic benefits once EVs become commonplace. Clearly, even Honda recognizes that a shift is inevitable.
Image Source: Smart Energy International, https://shorturl.at/bEV19