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Africa|electrification|Energy|Power|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|System|Cables
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Some Volvo models to feature bidirectional charging – meaning they can power your home

4th November 2022

By: Irma Venter

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

     

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Certain Volvo models will feature bidirectional charging – meaning they can be used to power a home.

The first of these models is the soon to be revealed fully electric EX90.

Volvo Car South Africa MD Greg Maruszewski says bidirectional charging is especially significant to South Africans because of loadshedding. 

“This South African challenge means that our customers will be especially receptive to a feature such as this.”

With bidirectional charging, electric cars have the potential to contribute to easing energy demand while plugged in, and, together with many other electric cars, they can even form a virtual powerplant. 

“Paired with smart-charging capabilities coming to the Volvo Cars smartphone app, the Volvo EX90 will allow motorists to charge their cars when demand from the grid is low and save that stored energy to be used later. ‘Later’ could obviously mean the point when loadshedding kicks in,” explains Maruszewski.

In practice, during loadshedding, the Volvo EX90 could power a number of appliances in a home – from power tools to a music system, he says.

“With the Volvo EX90 you can power your life,” adds Volvo Cars electrification ecosystem head Olivier Loedel

Along with being able to charge appliances and other devices, the car will ultimately also have the capability to lend a helping hand and give some of its charge to other compatible Volvos. 

On the flip side, if you, as the driver, are about to run out of juice, don’t worry. You can accept the same help from other Volvo cars.

Where available, the entire charging process will be automatic and managed by the charging functionality in the Volvo Cars app. 

The underlying algorithm also makes sure that you charge and discharge the battery in a limited way, reducing the risk of battery degradation.

Depending on rules specific to each energy market, bidirectional charging could also allow customers to support the grid in different ways. 

This could include taking in more energy during times when there is a surplus of renewable energy, or selling energy back during peak hours when there is more demand. 

Maruszewski says Volvo plans to offer the hardware needed to start using bidirectional charging features, including an advanced wall box and home energy management system. 

“Other accessories such as adapter plugs for appliances and cables for charging other cars will also be available. 

“The bidirectional charging offer will initially be launched in selected markets. When South Africa [becomes] one of those markets, this will be communicated to local customers.”

 

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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