Volkswagen and Belgian utility giant team up for vehicle-to-grid energy storage • TechCrunch

Volkswagen is partnering with a Belgian grid operator to bring electric vehicles into the power grid as more electric vehicles hit the road amid rising energy costs.

Volkswagen’s charging unit Elli and re.alto, a startup owned by Brussels-based Elia, signed a memorandum of understanding on Friday to collaborate on ways to integrate electric vehicles into the electrical system.

The multi-year partnership plans to identify barriers to electric vehicle integration and explore how powering the grid with electric vehicle batteries can help stabilize electricity costs and reduce fuel prices. energy.

The vehicle-to-grid concept allows customers to feed the electricity stored in their EV battery into the grid, drawing power from it as needed. Volkswagen said the partnership will explore pricing incentives to encourage drivers to contribute to the electrical system when the vehicle is parked.

“The rapid rise of electric vehicles reinforces the need for cooperation between the electricity and mobility sectors,” Elia Group CEO Chris Peeters said in a statement. “We want to enable the growing number of EV users to charge their EVs while maintaining the balance of the electrical system.

Volkswagen, the world’s largest automaker, has established dozens of partnerships, subsidiaries and business units to accelerate the development of electric vehicles. Formed in 2018, Elli manages the carmaker’s charging and energy businesses, including the Flexpole fast-charging network in Europe.

The juggernaut formed a company in July called PowerCo to lead the automaker’s global battery business from raw materials to recycling. Volkswagen plans to invest more than $20 billion to build six new battery factories across Europe by the end of the decade. The first two will be located in Salzgitter, Germany, and Valencia, Spain.

The Volkswagen Group has also increased its initial investment by $2 billion until 2026 to help its subsidiary Electrify America accelerate the deployment of super-fast charging stations in the United States and Canada.

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