BMW, Ford, and Honda launch Chargescape for EV grid services
Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

BMW, Ford, and Honda launch Chargescape for EV grid services

BMW Group, Ford Motor Company, and American Honda Motor Co. have announced a joint venture, ChargeScape, LLC. This new entity, based in Torrance, California, will focus on optimising electric vehicle (EV) grid services.

ChargeScape aims to harness the potential of EV technology by offering managed energy services. These services, previously unattainable with gasoline vehicles, will benefit EV users, electric utilities, and car manufacturers. The initiative will utilise insights from the Open Vehicle-Grid Integration Platform (OVGIP) to develop a unified platform connecting electric utilities, automakers, and EV customers. This will streamline energy usage across a vast pool of electric vehicles.

One of ChargeScape’s primary objectives is to offer financial incentives to EV users through grid services. This will not only reduce the carbon footprint of EV users but also bolster grid resilience.

The platform will allow electric utilities to access energy from a broad pool of EV batteries. EV users participating in the program can benefit financially by charging their vehicles during “grid-friendly” times. This managed charging schedule will also enable EV users to share stored energy with the grid during peak demand times, leveraging vehicle-to-grid (V2G) applications.

ChargeScape will also promote the efficient use of EV batteries. By providing energy data to electric utilities and system operators, the platform will support aggregated demand response, align charging with off-peak hours, and facilitate the use of renewable energy.

This initiative comes at a pivotal time. The surge in EV sales and infrastructure development presents challenges for the electric grid. ChargeScape aims to address these challenges by providing energy management services. This will pave the way for future V2G capabilities, benefiting both EV users and electric utilities.

Furthermore, ChargeScape will play a crucial role in decarbonising the grid. By using electricity from renewable sources like wind and solar, EV users can reduce their carbon footprints. The platform will ensure seamless integration between EV users and utilities, allowing users to retain control over their charging and energy decisions.

Thomas Ruemenapp, vice president of Engineering at BMW of North America, LLC, emphasised the importance of grid reliability and sustainability. Bill Crider, global head of charging and energy services at Ford Motor Company, echoed this sentiment, highlighting the potential of the EV revolution. Jay Joseph, vice president of Sustainability & Business Development at American Honda Motor Co., stressed the importance of renewable energy in the automotive industry’s electrified future.

In conclusion, ChargeScape, backed by OVGIP, will extend managed charging benefits to more EV users. This will eliminate marketing costs for utilities and provide a cost-effective way to identify EV users. The founding members encourage other automakers to join ChargeScape once it becomes fully operational.