Honda introduces monetary rewards for charging Fit EVs smartly

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 01 Aug 2018

Honda Fit EV

Honda’s Fit EV customers in the US can participate in the SmartCharge program by installing the HondaLink EV app. The reward is based on the customers’ participation rate over each two-month period. Fit EV drivers can monitor their charging progress and receive push notifications to remind them to plug in. The app also offers a scorecard feature that tracks rewards earned, CO2 saved, and other stats related to customers' participation in the program.  

Using the vehicle telematics system and Enel X subsidiary eMotorWerks' JuiceNet software platform, the program computes the best time to charge a vehicle from the electric grid, dynamically taking into account the driver’s daily schedule, the amount of renewable energy being generated and the amount of CO2 emitted from power plants on the grid. By recording the customer's desired charging times, the system enables the vehicle to be fully charged when the customer needs it next without impacting their use of the vehicle. As the Demand Response Provider (DRP) for Honda SmartCharge, eMotorWerks interfaces with the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) to allow for real-time control via cloud to cloud communication, enabling EVs to participate in demand response events to support the grid.

According to a study by Honda, Electric vehicle customers typically plug in and charge their vehicles when they arrive home after work, but this early evening charge time is often when demand on the grid is highest and when electricity is the most expensive. Honda SmartCharge permits Fit EV customers to charge when electricity demand is low and when the availability of renewable energy is high.

Steve Center, vice president, Connected and Environmental Business Development for American Honda Motor Co said, “Honda SmartCharge is uniquely able to shift electric vehicle charging in real-time without impacting the customer.”

Honda will study the results of the beta program among Fit EV customers, with an eye toward applying it to other electrified vehicles, including the Clarity Electric and Clarity Plug-in Hybrid. The Honda SmartCharge program is available on Apple devices for select California customers, with plans to expand to other areas in the near future.

Honda is targeting a 50 percent reduction in its total company CO2 emissions on a global basis by 2050, compared to the year 2000. The company intends for electrified vehicles to comprise two-thirds of its global automobile sales by 2030.

Honda's electrified vehicle lineup today includes the Clarity series of vehicles, featuring fuel cell, battery electric and plug-in hybrid powertrains, along with the new Accord Hybrid and Honda Insight.

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