Volvo is launching a new business unit focused on charging solutions as well as home energy storage and transfer.
The new business, called Volvo Cars Energy Solutions, will take advantage of V2G, V2H, and V2L tech that upcoming Volvo electric vehicles will offer.
The automaker has partnered with Göteborg Energi Nät AB in Sweden to launch a V2G pilot program.
Volvo plans to become an EV-only manufacturer by the end of the decade, and with several new electric models on the way in the coming months, it could well be on track to achieve that target.
But electric cars are just one part of the equation.
Now, Volvo is launching an energy business that will offer everything else that will be a part of an EV future, including home energy storage systems and charging hardware.
Dubbed Volvo Cars Energy Solutions, this unit of the company will offer home charging solutions as well as other tech that will take advantage of V2G (vehicle-to-grid) charging capabilities, which will debut in the upcoming Volvo EX90.
The automaker is currently working with Göteborg Energi Nät AB in Sweden to launch a V2G pilot program, ahead of a wider rollout in the near future.
"With bi-directional charging, you can use your car battery as an extra energy supply, for example to provide power to your home, other electric devices or another electric Volvo car," said Alexander Petrofski, the new Head of Volvo Cars Energy Solutions.
Volvo certainly won't be the first automaker to expand into home energy storage and charging tech, and this trend demonstrates that quite a few automakers will need similar offerings as home energy storage goes mainstream, along with solar energy generation.
Still, as Tesla's experience shows, there are some parts of this business that can be more easily managed and more profitable than others, as its Solar Cities and roof installation units have demonstrated.
Just about all EV buyers will want a home-based wallbox, but taking on the task of offering affordable home installation of solar roofs is perhaps quite another matter.
"With the help of smart charging, you can charge your electric Volvo at the best available time from a sustainability and economy perspective," Petrofski adds. "Now imagine you could use that energy later, perhaps during peak times when prices are higher and the energy mix less sustainable."
Needless to say we're still in the early years of V2G technology, so this type of system won't be a perfect fit for every household with an EV in the garage. But Volvo is optimistic, citing that fact that the average daily drive in European countries uses less than 10 kWh, and 90% of all drives consume less than 20 kWh.
In theory, this means that there is a lot of battery capacity that could be put to use.
In addition to V2G tech, Volvo will also be looking to offer V2H (vehicle-to-home) and V2L (vehicle-to-load) products, which will allow EV owners to power things like electric bikes as well as the house, when needed.
"The idea with building an energy ecosystem around your car and the batteries is that it allows you to save money and reduce your CO2 emissions, while energy firms benefit from reduced grid investments and a lower overall impact on the environment," Petrofski adds.
Will home energy storage go mainstream in this decade, or will demand for such tech take longer to materialize? Let us know in the comments below.