In a recent announcement, Volkswagen revealed that its upcoming electric vehicle (EV) models will now support bidirectional charging, allowing EV owners to power their homes. Despite initial plans to implement this feature in 2022, software delays hindered its release. According to Imelda Labbe, VW's sales leader, bidirectional charging offers potential energy cost savings for EV owners, positioning their vehicles as rolling energy storage banks.
Volkswagen initiated a pilot project in collaboration with HagerEnergy GmbH in Sweden. This project integrates a home power station and a Home Energy Management System (HEMS), enabling EV owners to utilize their solar power systems to cover energy consumption. Through electricity tariffs and smart algorithms, owners can strategically charge their EVs during periods of abundant renewable energy, storing it for later use.
The bidirectional charging capability, when combined with DC charging, allows Volkswagen EVs to serve as the primary energy source for homes. The home power station draws power from the vehicle when additional energy is required for the home storage system. Once the vehicle is recharged, it enters standby mode to prevent unnecessary battery drain, activating only when more energy is needed.
Volkswagen claims that this system can provide electricity for approximately “two full days,” assuming an average energy use of 30 kWh. The bidirectional charging feature will be available in many ID electric models, particularly those equipped with the 77 kWh battery, as well as previously delivered models with ID. Software 3.5.
Initially, compatibility for bidirectional charging is limited to the S10 Compact series from HagerEnergy, with VW promising the availability of other home power stations at a later date. The move towards bidirectional charging aims to alleviate strain on the grid by supplying power to homes during peak hours, contributing to Volkswagen's active role in shaping the ongoing energy transition.