The electrical energy stored in the large batteries of new electric cars is not always fully utilised. This is a fact explained by a number of car manufacturers around the world who each year analyse the mileage data (anonymously) of cars already delivered to customers.

How can this surplus "energy potential" be exploited? The answer lies in V2G, an acronym for vehicle-to-grid, i.e. two-way charging, which allows some of the stored energy to be sent back to the city's infrastructure, as well as to one's own home, perhaps during peak hours, effectively reducing electricity costs and overall emissions.

Sending energy back to reduce emissions

The irony in the title of this paragraph briefly explains the concept behind V2G technology, which is to send electricity back into the infrastructure so that it can be used at the same time for 'something' that needs it most (such as a household appliance during peak hours), thereby reducing the load on the grid and therefore the final cost to the consumer.

The idea is very simple, but it took several years of research to develop it reliably and accurately. The first manufacturer in the world to offer it on its cars was the Korean Hyundai-Kia group, followed later by many other manufacturers, such as Ford with the new F-150 Lightning, Volkswagen and Volvo Cars.

Hyundai IONIQ 5 - V2L - Recharge Hyundai Kona Electric

La recharge bidirectionnelle de la Hyundai Ioniq 5

Photo - Kia EV6, le test

Le système V2G sur la Kia EV6

To take full advantage of this new technology, the Swedish company recently created a brand new business unit. Called Volvo Cars Energy Solutions, it will offer storage and recharging technologies and services from its launch in the coming months. In short, the company's idea is to provide solutions to create the ideal system.

One of these is two-way search, which will be available from the next few months on the new EX90, which will also be the first Volvo to be equipped with all the hardware and software needed to enable direct storage of solar energy, obtained from photovoltaic panels placed on the roofs of homes.

Electric cars rarely used

Reusing the electrical energy stored in the batteries of electric cars is an idea that has been on the agenda of car manufacturers for several years, and the reason is quickly explained: in various parts of the world, zero-emission cars are used less by their users when they were driving combustion-powered cars.

La recharge bidirectionnelle de la Ford F-150 Lightning

The phenomenon was explained by Volvo Cars itself, which reported that, based on data from its fleet, less than 10 kWh is used on average during a typical driving day in Europe, with only 10% of the public using more than that. This means that there is still a high percentage of battery capacity that can be used for other purposes.