Volkswagen has developed ‘Charging Robots’ which deliver a charging pack to electric cars in a car park instead of fixed charging points.
Whether you’re on VW’s side in believing we’re at the tipping point for electric cars, or Honda’s in believing EVs won’t be mainstream any time soon, recharging of electric cars is still a tricky number.
The network we currently have for charging electric cars is still patchy, EV charging points are often not reliably on-stream, and where there are dedicated charging points in car parks they are often hogged by fully charged cars or even ICE drivers parking where they shouldn’t.
There’s also the not inconsiderable cost of installing more fixed charging points in existing parking facilities to consider, and the potential impracticality, but VW think they have come up with a solution – Charging Robots.
Instead of having dedicated charging points in car parks, VW has come up with a charging robot which will tow a 25kWh charging pack to the car, accessing the charging point and plugging in to deliver fast charging at a rate of up to 50kW.
Mark Möller, Head of Development at VW Products, said:
The mobile charging robot will spark a revolution when it comes to charging in different parking facilities, such as multistorey car parks, parking spaces and underground car parks because we bring the charging infrastructure to the car and not the other way around. With this, we are making almost every car park electric, without any complex individual infrastructural measures.
It’s a visionary prototype, which can be made into reality quite quickly, if the general conditions are right.
VW has given no time scale for the introduction of charging robots in car parks, but it’s an interesting idea.