has reported this week that there may be further positive financial news for those looking to invest in an electric vehicle. Aside from the lower fuel costs, the prospect of a vehicle to grid (V2G) system could add further monetary reward for EV owners. The idea is that electric vehicle users’ plugged in vehicles will be used as external batteries to boost power supply to the grid at peak times. In theory this would reduce the need for expensive, emission-heavy backup generators. Owners would be paid around 20p per hour for use of their vehicle in this manner.The system would be operated by the power company, so there would be no further logistical demands on the driver. The Economist calculates that an EV driver could make around $4000 (£2472) per year using this system, which would far exceed the recharging costs of the vehicle. As a guide, Nissan suggests that their ‘Leaf’ vehicles cost around $225 (£140) per year to charge, so there is the potential for a substantial financial windfall.US-Driven Change
While this is a technology very much in its infancy, the University of Delaware is leading research into the project and the first legislative steps towards the provision of a V2G system have already been taken in that state.
Fleet managers should take note, as there is the potential for their car parks, using this technology, to become giant battery cells, with a significant revenue stream attached to their use. Indeed, if this technology becomes commonplace, the financial remuneration could offer a further incentive for business drivers to swap petrol-driven vehicles for an electric alternative.