Today, car manufacturer Nissan revealed it will be trialling a new scheme, which will allow electric vehicle (EV) owners to sell excess energy from their car or van’s battery back the UK grid. Nissan’s innovative project is the first of its kind in the UK.
The Vehicle-To-Grid (V2G) trial scheme, which is a joint venture between the car manufacturer Nissan and multinational power company Enel, involves 100 private and fleet customers of the Nissan LEAF and e-NV200 electric vans.
The system works by allowing Nissan EV owners to connect to the grid to charge at low-demand, cheap tariff periods, with an option to then use the electricity stored in the vehicle’s battery at home and at work when costs are higher, or feed that electricity back to the grid, so generating additional revenue for the EV owner.
The companies believe the V2G scheme could revolutionise how energy is supplied to the grid. They have estimated that if all 18,000 Nissan EVs currently on the UK’s roads were connected to the energy network, they would generate the equivalent output of a 180 MW power plant. If that was scaled up in a future where all the vehicles on UK roads are electric, vehicle-to-grid technology could generate a virtual power plant of up to 370 GW. This energy capacity could power three countries the size of the UK, Germany and France.
Nissan see EVs as being mobile energy hubs of the future, helping to enable a smarter energy grid and paving the way for more renewables.
The company also unveiled a brand new residential energy storage unit using former EV batteries as domestic storage units.
The ‘xStorage’ solution, in partnership with power management leader Eaton, provides a sustainable ‘second life’ for Nissan’s electric vehicle batteries after their first life in cars is over. Powered by twelve Nissan LEAF battery cells, the new unit can save customers money on their utility bills by charging up when renewable energy is available or energy is cheaper (e.g. during the night) and releasing that stored energy when demand and costs are high.
Customers can also generate additional revenues by selling stored energy back to the grid when demand and costs are high.
The announcements were made at the Nissan Futures event in central London. It is the first of a series of events taking place across Europe which aims to break new ground in the quest for next generation mobility solutions.
Nissan also used the event to announce that its flagship European manufacturing plant in Sunderland saw the 50,000th all-electric Nissan LEAF roll off its production line. This is a watershed moment for Nissan. Five years ago, the Nissan LEAF was the very first mass-market electric vehicle and it remains the best-selling EV of all time with in excess of 200,000 vehicles sold worldwide.
Learn more by watching the video below.