Weekly update

V2G Readiness Worldwide, BayWa, Volkswagen and much more

Post from March 07, 2024: V2G Readiness Worldwide, BayWa, Volkswagen, Dodge, Hyundai, Volcopter

Post from March 07, 2024: V2G Readiness Worldwide, BayWa, Volkswagen, Dodge, Hyundai, Volcopter

Topic overview

A study on the implementation of Vehicle-to-Grid technology, research on cooling technology for electric vehicles, CO2 filter systems, battery systems, and fuel cell stacks, the collaboration between Volkswagen and Xpeng, the world premiere of the Charger Daytona, the start of serial production of Volocopter's flying taxis, and much more – these are our headlines in the tenth week of the year 2024. 

A study on the implementation of Vehicle-to-Grid technology, research on cooling technology for electric vehicles, CO2 filter systems, battery systems, and fuel cell stacks, the collaboration between Volkswagen and Xpeng, the world premiere of the Charger Daytona, the start of serial production of Volocopter's flying taxis, and much more – these are our headlines in the tenth week of the year 2024. 

Topic overview

The consulting firm Berylls has analyzed how well various nations are prepared for Vehicle-to-Grid technology, abbreviated as V2G technology, and created a ranking from their findings. The established V2G Score is intended to show how a country utilizes V2G potential. Factors included the rollout of smart meters and the proportion of electric vehicles in the fleet equipped with bidirectional charging capability. The analysis is indicating that the V2G potential in most nations is not limited by the introduction of smart meters alone but primarily by the number of available V2G-capable vehicles. Leading the ranking are Norway, followed by Sweden and the Netherlands. Germany, on the other hand, is significantly lagging behind the leading countries in terms of V2G readiness. This is mainly due to the low distribution of smart meters in Germany, with only about one percent of households currently equipped with a suitable smart meter. 

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(c) Berylls Strategy Advisors

Researchers at the Fraunhofer USA Center Midwest CMW developed a cooling technology for electric vehicle technology based on ultra-thin synthetic diamond membranes. These diamond membranes are said to offer four to five times the thermal conductivity of copper and could, according to the researchers, reduce the local heat load on electronic components by tenfold in the future. The researchers also believe that this technology could potentially increase charging speeds by fivefold. 

Toyota is currently working on a technology to directly filter CO2 from the air. This technique, developed in cooperation with Kawasaki Heavy Industries, uses two filter systems to extract carbon dioxide from the surrounding air and convert it into water. This filter system is currently being tested in a Corolla race car powered by a hydrogen engine. The carbon capture device utilizes two special filter elements to capture CO2 from the air. Using the heat, generated by the hydrogen engine, the captured CO2 is released by increasing the temperature and dissolved in a connected water storage unit. 

Additionally, this week, a consortium named XProLas, which includes companies like Trumpf, Cellforce, and BASF, announced the usage of laser-driven X-ray sources to examine batteries. This technology is expected to enable real-time monitoring of battery charging and discharging and precisely identify impurities. The compact systems, expected to be about the size of a trailer, are intended to accelerate the development of new batteries with improved charging speed and reliability. The first demo systems are expected to be completed by 2026. As part of the development partnership of XProLas, a compact, high-brilliance X-ray source for analyzing cathode material is also being developed, in addition to the system for analyses during a rapid charging process. 

A research team from the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA and the Center for Digitalization, Leadership, and Sustainability Black Forest has also introduced an automation solution to produce fuel cell stacks. A duo of robots can assemble a fuel cell stack, consisting of 400 individual cells, in just about 13 minutes. "Manual production would take a multiple of that time," according to the researchers. Additionally, the precision offered by this method is a significant advantage, as any deviation can reduce the performance of the fuel cell system. Therefore, the two robots are designed to simultaneously stack two fuel cell stacks. If the robot cameras detect tiny deviations in shape and size, they can assign the bipolar plate or membrane electrode assembly to the corresponding stack. 

(c) Toyota

BayWa Mobility Solutions (BMS), as part of the Deutschlandnetz, recently won the contract for the Bayern-Los. This includes 20 fast-charging parks in Bavaria that must be built in specified areas. Now, the Munich-based company has announced plans to expand the construction nationwide to more than a 100 charging parks by 2026. The charging parks are set to offer charging infrastructure with up to 300 kW of power and will be located at sites with good transport connections, high vehicle frequency, and public accessibility. This will involve creating new and existing site partnerships with municipalities, farmers, and developers. Additionally, the company offers to pay a lease to owners who provide BayWa with their land for use. 

(c) BayWa Mobility Solutions AG

Volkswagen is teaming up with the Chinese startup XPeng to jointly develop electric vehicles in the future. This collaboration was announced in a joint statement by both companies. An agreement has been made for the mutual use of vehicle and platform components. The first two vehicles are expected to roll off the assembly line in 2026. The partnership aims reducing design and construction phase by about 30 percent through joint purchasing and mutual technology usage. The first two battery-powered B-class vehicles are slated to begin production in 2026. The goal is also to reduce development costs, according to both companies. 


The tire brand Schwalbe has increased the proportion of recycled and renewable materials in its "Green Marathon" tire to 80 percent by reusing old nylon from fishing nets. With this initiative, the company aims to reduce its dependence on petroleum-based materials and to lower CO2 emissions. 

Meanwhile, tire manufacturer Michelin plans to build a facility in Sweden that will recycle about 35,000 tons of old tires annually using pyrolysis. This initiative is part of a larger project to establish facilities across Europe capable of processing 1 million tons of old tires each year. The technology is expected to recover raw materials such as carbon black and oil from old tires, thereby reducing emissions by more than 90 percent compared to conventional carbon black. 

(c) Michelin

ZF has inaugurated its first "Zero-Emission Factory" in Klášterec, Czech Republic, marking a significant step towards achieving its goal of being climate-neutral across all value chains by 2040. The factory is expected to cover around 20 percent of its annual electricity demand with solar power generated on-site and will additionally source electricity exclusively from renewable sources. To this end, approximately 3,400 solar panels have been installed on the roofs and on a green space next to the facilities. Furthermore, the heating system is designed to operate without fossil fuels, which is anticipated to reduce heating costs by 50 percent. The purchased electricity will come exclusively from renewable sources, mainly wind and hydro power. 

(c) ZF

Volkswagen Group Charging (Elli) has opened its European charging network to external mobility companies. Starting now, the car rental company Sixt, in collaboration with Volkswagen's subsidiary Elli, is offering its customers access to nearly 400,000 charging points in the public charging network. The integration of the SIXT-Charge solution into the SIXT app is designed to significantly simplify the charging process for electric vehicles, eliminating the need for additional charging cards or registrations. This solution aims to handle all steps – from finding charging stations to the charging process and payment processing – with a single app. 

(c) Sixt

Samsung SDI is set to begin mass production of solid-state batteries in 2027. These solid-state batteries are expected to achieve an energy density of 900 Wh/L and start mass production by 2027. Samsung SDI had initiated its pilot production for solid-state cells a year ago but had not previously announced a timeline for mass production. 

(c) AdobeStock

Dodge unveiled the Charger Daytona, the first electric muscle car every created, designed to retain the iconic exhaust sound, despite its electric drivetrain. It will be available in two versions (Scat Pack and R/T). According to Dodge, the system utilizes "two passive radiators to a create a unique exhaust profile with Hellcat levels of sound intensity that shatters the preconception of a typical quiet BEV and instead delivers a sound worthy of the Brotherhood of Muscle." Equipped with two electric motors, each offering 250 kW for a total of 500 kW of driving power and based on the Stellantis STLA Large platform with 400-volt technology, the Charger Daytona is expected to go from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.3 seconds and complete the quarter mile in only 11.5 seconds. The battery, using NCA chemistry, has a gross capacity of 100.5 kWh, with a peak discharge power of 550 kW. The Charger Daytona R/T is estimated to have a range of 317 miles, while the Scat Pack version is expected to have a range of 260 miles – that's approximately 510 and 418 kilometers, respectively. The upcoming Charger lineup will also feature two options for combustion engines: the Dodge Charger SIXPACK HO with 550 horsepower and the Charger SIXPACK SO with 420 horsepower, powered by a 3.0-liter twin-turbo I-6 Hurricane engine. 

(c) Dodge

Hyundai has announced a facelift for the Ioniq 5, which will feature a larger battery capacity of 84 kWh and an increased range of up to 570 kilometers (approximately 354 miles). The updated Ioniq 5 is set to hit the market in South Korea in March, with a global rollout planned for later in the year. 

The Mercedes EQS is also slated to receive a facelift soon. The update for this large electric sedan will optionally include a traditional grill and the option to order a Mercedes star on the top of the hood. Furthermore, the Mercedes EQS will be equipped with an improved battery, resulting in a higher range. The EQS is expected to be available from June. More details have yet to be released. 

(c) Dodge

In collaboration with the Dutch development partner MTRL, Igus has started mass production of the Igus Bike. This bicycle is made from 92 percent recycled plastic. Currently, the first 100 units are being produced, with the company aiming to manufacture up to 10,000 units of the 17kg (approximately 37.5 lbs) bicycle over the next two years. Igus and MTRL are utilizing rotational and injection molding processes to create components of the bicycle using granules made from recycled plastic waste, including fishing nets. 

(c) Igus

The German electric flying taxi developer Volocopter has received approval from the German Federal Aviation Office (LBA) for the mass production of its flying taxis. According to the company, Volocopter is the first and only eVTOL (electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing) company worldwide to hold both the Design Organization Approval (DOA) and the Production Organization Approval (POA). Volocopter plans to deploy its flying taxis at the Summer Olympics in Paris in 2024. 

(c) Volocopter

Cadillac launched its electric vehicles in Switzerland in 2023, and this year, plans to introduce them in France and Germany by the end of the year. 

At IAA MOBILITY 2023, the Chinese startup Leapmotor celebrated the world premiere of its mid-size SUV, the Leapmotor C10. The company has now announced plans to launch the electric SUV C10, with its European market debut set for the third quarter of 2024. 

Citroen is set to introduce the electric micro-mobility vehicle Ami to Germany this summer. The 2.41-meter-long two-seater, with its 6 kW (approximately 8 HP) electric drive, will be sold exclusively online. The urban vehicle has been available in France since 2020. 

The Chinese automaker Chery is launching the first model of its new electric vehicle brand iCAR. The debut model is an electric SUV. 

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