It’s one of the technologies that electric car manufacturers are looking at the most, and that is also of interest to owners. Two-way charging, now finally available on some smartphones, allows a car to distribute energy from its batteries to another car, or to inject current back into the network (Vehicle-to-grid).
Some manufacturers, such as Renault, BMW, Honda and even Nissan, are looking into it and probably have fairly advanced projects in their boxes. Surprisingly, Tesla, market leader, leading innovator, and present for almost two decades, had never really touched on the subject. The few times that Elon Musk has spoken has not suggested a very favorable position for this use, because according to the CEO of Tesla, it could very quickly degrade the batteries. JB Straubel, former technical director of the Californian manufacturer, however, said in 2015 that this could make sense from the moment Tesla sold 1 million vehicles, which is now the case.
Small kWh distributions between friends
But an indiscretion noted by our colleagues from Electrek suggests that Tesla would not be as hostile as that to bidirectional charging, and even that the Tesla Model 3 would already be equipped for it. According to Electrek, Marco Gaxiola, an electrical engineer who participated in the disassembly of a Tesla competitor's Model 3, did reverse engineering for the charger for the electric car and found that it was ready for two-way charging. He specifies : "What I learned during reverse engineering of the Model 3 loader is that the design is fully bi-directional. This means that energy can be converted from alternating current to direct current in the same way as in the previous example, but also that energy can flow in the opposite direction, coming from the battery and ending up on the side of alternating current. . This is called a DC to AC inverter, and when this technology is present in a vehicle, it is known as V2G (Vehicle to Grid). "
According to him, this functionality would be planned to be activated with a simple software update.
A technology, which if it spreads en masse, could change the situation for the use of electric cars. On the one hand, they could recharge between them, which would probably help to reduce the stress of autonomy even more, but they could also redistribute their overflow of unused charge in the network and thus contribute to smoothing consumption for example during peak hours. One could very well imagine that all of this would be managed in a very simple way by an application, with a credit system allocated during the redistribution of electricity. Another use case: supplying your house with electricity in the event of a breakdown or overload.
If Tesla were to pay close attention to the subject and be ready to activate the function, it would be a strong signal to encourage other manufacturers to do the same. As a reminder, in a similar register, Audi recycles the used batteries from its cars to integrate them into mobile charging stations.