Kia to offer bidirectional charging via Wallbox

Wallbox Quasar2 V2H

Electric vehicle charging tech provider Wallbox is now working with Kia America to bring bidirectional charging to Kia’s EV9 customers. The companies plan to offer Wallbox’s second generation dc bidirectional charger, Quasar 2, which would allow Kia EV9 customers to power their homes from their EV when the grid goes down, starting in the first half of 2024.

“Bidirectional charging can offer long term benefits to users, grid operators, utilities and will accelerate the transition to renewable energy sources,” said Enric Asunción, CEO and co-founder of Wallbox. “When combined with an EV capable of bidirectional charging, such as Kia’s advanced EV9, Quasar 2 offers one of the most functional and affordable home energy management solutions on the market.”

Quasar 2 is a next-generation 11.5 kW bidirectional charger. This means EV owners can charge and discharge their electric vehicle to power their home, vehicle-to-home (V2H) or send energy back to the grid, vehicle-to-grid (V2G).

A Kia EV9 can hold between 76 and 100 kWh of energy, over 5x the amount of energy of a standard 13.5 kWh home storage system, and power a typical household energy consumption for up to four days, removing the need for expensive home energy storage systems.

How it works | During a power outage, Quasar 2’s Power Recovery Mode automatically switches the user’s power source from the grid to their vehicle to allow a homeowner to use their EV battery as an emergency generator.

Users who have solar installations can also store excess solar energy in their EV during low usage periods and then harness this energy at another time, including peak periods, to reduce their reliance on the grid and accelerate the uptake of renewable energy. SunPower is a preferred installer of Wallbox EV chargers.

This type of backup service is becoming not only increasingly important, but crucial, given the sheer volume and duration of power outages in the US. Last year, California alone witnessed 39 power outages and more than 414 hours of total outage time. Across the U.S., unforeseen power outages cost the U.S. economy $150 billion annually.

Wallbox estimates that Quasar 2 can offer users yearly energy bill savings of over $1,000 when combined with utility Demand Response programs and time-of-use utility rates. By taking advantage of time-of-use utility rates in the U.S., users can enhance the impact of V2H technology by scheduling charging sessions at times when energy prices are low and discharging their car to power their home when prices are high.

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