The latest EVs come equipped with Vehicle To Load (V2L) technology which could be a crucial factor to consider before buying an electric car.
As a result of the relentless innovation with modern EVs, a feature like Vehicle To Load (V2L) is becoming quite prevalent and necessary. The industry experts and potential customers alike are constantly struggling with the range anxiety associated with electric cars. However, the V2L function deals with, essentially, the opposite end of the spectrum in that it allows external appliances to get charged with your EV as the power source.
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What is Vehicle To Load (V2L)?
V2L represents the bidirectional electric power flow using the battery of the EV. While it stores the energy that is supplied to it while charging, the V2L feature allows it to discharge it using an adapter to power external appliances like a mini-fridge, smartphone, laptops, electric water kettle, etc. In its future applications, the adapters and EVs with high power output capabilities can even power entire households. This is termed as Vehicle To Home (V2H).
The software of some EVs support this feature which allows the DC power to get converted into AC power and used in external appliances. These adapters are capable of outputting 2.3 kW to 3.6 kW. You need to make sure that your EV comes with the adapter to utilize the V2L function. In some EVs, one is required to buy this adapter separately.
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Applications of V2L
A common environment where something like the V2L technology would certainly find massive application is on camping trips. People travel to remote areas for weekend getaways. In such scenarios where you are a bit far away from the civilisation, you could use your EV to power lights, chargers, speakers, coffee makers, etc. EVs have the build-in feature to stop charging external appliances if the battery gets below 20% to ensure that you get back comfortably.
Most importantly, V2L could be used to power another EV that might be, unfortunately, stranded on the road for any reason. If someone runs out of range and the nearest charging station is just a few miles away, an EV with V2L can jack up the stranded vehicle to lend it a few miles to get to safety. Arguably, this could also be a major application of this feature.
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Which EVs Have V2L Feature?
There are not too many EVs in the market at the moment that come with this feature. MG ZS EV is one such car that is quite popular in the UK. For the U.S. market, the Korean car marquees, Hyundai and Kia offer the V2L feature in their respective EVs, the Ioniq 5 and EV6. The EGMP (Electric Global Modular Platform) supports V2L and the future products spawning out of it would definitely feature it. This platform also underpins the other brands under Hyundai Motor Group like Kia and Genesis.
The upcoming Ford F-150 Lightning could also come equipped with this feature as it is a lifestyle pickup truck which is often involved in activities like towing and camping excursions. Something like V2L or V2H (in future) ought to come naturally to the iconic pickup trucks that are about to go electric.