Kaluza has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with automaker Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) to develop a ‘cheaper, simpler and more sustainable’ electric vehicle (EV) charging services.
Together the companies will develop a smart charging service for Fiat 500 EVs, utilising Kaluza’s intelligent energy platform. This will use live data from local grid operators to shift car charging times, ensuring the vehicles are charged when carbon intensity is lowest and energy is cheapest.
While other companies have looked at similar technology, it generally relies on a separate smart charger, whilst this trial will use direct-to-car technology.
Roberto Di Stefano, head of e-Mobility for the EMEA Region at FCA said the agreement with Kaluza represented an “excellent opportunity” to reduce the cost of charging vehicles, and subsequently the total cost of ownership.
“Furthermore, this innovation will allow our Fiat 500 EV customers to experience the benefits without the need to install specific charging equipment.”
The trial – the first phase of a longer partnership between the two companies – will see a select group of Fiat 500 EV customers use the smart charging service during the first six months of 2021, and provide feedback at a number of forums.
Sara Wood, CEO at Kaluza said collaboration between the transport and energy sectors was going to be “crucial” for the UK to reach net zero by 2050.
“We are excited to be working with FCA, a company that combines a unique automotive history with an ambitious vision for the future of e-Mobility. Together, we are putting a truly innovative technology in the hands of drivers, allowing them to unlock the full value of their electric vehicle and become active participants in a decarbonised energy future.”
The MoU follows the results of another Kaluza smart EV charging project with Bosch, which successfully showed that EVs can be smart charged to meet the needs of the local grid via direct connection, by using a digital platform.