"Car batteries will help make our electricity system more efficient."
Easy Way: How about charging the electric car with electricity from your own PV system. Does that pay off?
Kolmsee: Charging with electricity from your own PV system is actually the cheapest and most environmentally friendly solution. This would easily reduce the cost of a 100 km car trip to 1.80 euros. At the moment, we are assuming around 4 euros per 100 km in Europe. With our Webasto Next and the Webasto backend, the electric vehicle will only be able to be charged with the surplus electricity — that is, the PV electricity that is not otherwise used in the household — from the company's own PV system.
Easy Way: What role will electricity storage, especially car batteries, play in the future to prevent the collapse of the power grid?
Kolmsee: In the future, car batteries will help make our electricity system more efficient and reduce the cost of high investments in grid infrastructure. There are already e-cars with a so-called bidirectional charging option. This means that car batteries can feed electricity back into the grid — be it the household grid or the public grid. Owners of photovoltaic systems can use their electric vehicle's battery to store electricity generated on a sunny day and use it when needed. Volkswagen wants to use the combined battery capacity of its cars to buffer the public power grid when needed — and also generate additional revenue.
Easy Way: So you don't see any bottlenecks or power outages in the future because of overloaded grids?
Kolmsee: Power generation from renewable energy sources reduces the carbon footprint. Soon, the days of standing at gas stations watching the meter relentlessly remind us of increased fuel prices will be over. E-mobility will reduce transportation costs and the cost of power grid infrastructure. This doesn't even consider environmental costs. An important key to the success of the climate and mobility turnaround will be smart charging stations.
The Webasto Next enables charging your vehicle with only the surplus electricity of your PV.