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Volkswagen aims to boost EV affordability through V2X trials

Volkswagen Group UK is part of a vehicle-to-everything (V2X) bidirectional charging trial aiming to boost the affordability of electric vehicles (EV).

Intelligent energy platform Kaluza, OVO Energy and Indra are part of the newly-formed Inflexion consortium which brings together energy, mobility and technology companies to develop V2X business models and rewarding customer propositions to increase EV affordability and adoption.

V2X technology enables drivers to power their home with their EV, leverage their EV as a backup power source during outages, and sell surplus energy back to the grid, helping to reduce their energy and mobility costs while accelerating decarbonisation.

Equally, V2X provides energy suppliers and utilities with the opportunity to engage drivers in the energy transition through innovative services and manage the impacts of EV adoption at scale alongside increasing renewable generation.

Inflexion is part of the Government-funded V2X Innovation Programme recently granted funding as Ofgem revealed that improvements to smart charging technology could save high-mileage electric vehicle (EV) drivers up to £1,000 per year.

Energy and climate minister, Graham Stuart, said: “We want to make smart charging an easier choice for drivers of electric vehicles, whether that is charging on the driveway, at the workplace, or parked on the street.

“To do that we need to build new network infrastructure at pace, using the latest available technologies.”

The new V2X trial aims to prove the power of the technology with the latest Volkswagen Group CCS vehicles and prioritise engagement with Volkswagen Group brands and OVO Energy customers to ensure the solution delivers for EV drivers’ needs.

Stuart said: “Today’s plan sets out how we will work with Ofgem and industry to kickstart the market for smart charging, which we are backing it up with £16 million in innovation funding. This will let people take control of their energy usage, in the most convenient and low-cost way.”

The consortium will build on a deployment of domestic vehicle-to-grid (V2G) devices powered by Kaluza’s software and Indra’s hardware that enabled drivers to earn around £420 a year with some earning up to £800 for selling their EV’s energy back to the grid.

Inflexion’s V2X will empower future EV drivers to unlock further potential from their vehicles, including to power their homes, and through CCS compatibility, enable millions more drivers to reap the benefits of this, regardless of which EV they own.

It builds on Kaluza’s charging software for V2X and grid services, developed over the past four years.

Scott Neuman, CEO at Kaluza, said: “V2X will have a transformative effect on decarbonising our energy system but only if we make it accessible and affordable for all.

“Inflexion is an exciting step for the industry to engage and learn from real EV drivers and bring this game changing technology closer to true, commercial scale.”

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