Currently reading: BMW tests vehicle-to-grid EV charging scheme with i3 fleet
Customers' i3s have been equipped with new technology to turn them into ‘mobile energy storage devices’

BMW customers are testing bi-directional EV charging as part of a three-year project, enabling drivers to charge their cars as normal, with the added benefit of returning energy into the power grid when required.

A group of 20 customers in Germany have been given BMW BMW i3 electric cars equipped with the new technology, and an additional 30 are set to be delivered to business users over the next few weeks. 

“During periods of particularly high demand for electricity, these vehicles are able to feed additional power into the grid, while their high-voltage batteries are mainly charged at times when electricity from renewable sources is available or overall demand is lower,” said BMW.

“The stored energy can, in turn, be deployed exactly when needed, whether for electric driving or boosting power grid capacity."

The pilot scheme aims to develop technological solutions for making electric mobility easier and cheaper for users, with lower emissions.

BMW hopes it will turn electric cars into ‘mobile energy storage devices’ that can supply electricity to the grid when needed. 

“By adopting a holistic approach, the project aims to interlink vehicles, charging infrastructure and power grids for the first time in a way that facilitates the use of renewable energy – and at the same time increases power supply reliability,” the firm said. 

Those taking part in the pilot scheme will also benefit from a new technology package. This consists of new in-vehicle and backend technology developed by BMW; an intelligent charging wallbox from Kostal; and the networking for interconnecting the electric car, wallbox and electrical installation in the customer’s building with the power grid from energy firms Bayernwerk, KEO and Tennet.

BMW says the scheme is needed due to the growing need to control energy flows and consumption as the number of electric vehicles increases.

Other firms are also investing in vehicle-to-grid technology, including Audi, FiatNissan and Renault.


Renault scheme transforms EVs into energy storage units

Audi developing vehicle-to-grid charging system for EVs

Nissan seeks businesses for new vehicle-to-grid charging trial

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405line 19 July 2021

Just as a microphone and a loudspeaker are essentially the same thing, so is a dynamo/alternator and an electric motor, that's why some manufacurers have been able to do away a dedicated starter motor as the electrical generator/alternator "device" can be adapted to be a starter motor.

You can have a dynamo on a bike for example but the energy still has to be provided by food and the dynamo will offer more physical resistance just as an alternator fan belt "squeaks" in the winter when the battery is low after starting up as the electrical load on it increases and causes a sqeak if the fan belt is a little slack this is why regenerative vehicles and F1 cars "hardly have any rear brakes" because the kinetic energy is being converted to electrical energy, hence "instant slow down" when you lift off in a regenerative braking car.

Those DJ turntables (Technics 1200 etc) that can stop more or less instantly instantly use an electric brake to stop the rotation of the platter in a very short distance, in fact the Technics platter is essentially one half of an eletric motor with the coils attached to the chassis under the platter.

Cobnapint 17 July 2021
@marc, you'll need to be earning plenty to help pay for a new battery pack when it degrades sooner than anybody else's.
This is similar to filling your car up with fuel, then allowing somebody to come along on the night to siphon a bit out and leave you a bit more cash on the side.
You've still got to top the damn thing up again, and the only difference with draining fuel out is it doesn't wear anything out in the process.
Cobnapint 17 July 2021
That's one thing that's always puzzled me - why can't the forward motion of EVs be used to trickle charge the batts?
I know EV fans always go on about how the brakes hardly ever wear out on them because of regenerative braking, but how much juice does that actually deliver? Can't be much considering what relatively little time is spent slowing down.