Nissan Australia says owners of the new generation Nissan Leaf electric cars should have vehicle-to-home and possibly vehicle-to-grid capabilities towards the end of this year.
The new Nissan Leaf is the only car that is factory-approved to use its battery to power the home and provide services to the grid, but so far the 590 buyers of Nissan Leafs since they arrived on the Australia market last August have not had access to the bi-directional chargers needed to use their car as a battery on wheels.
That should change soon. The new trial involving 51 Nissan Leafs – to be leased mostly by the ACT government, in a project led by an ANU team and local utility ActewAGL – means that the bi-drectional chargers mounted on a wall will be available for purchase.
It won’t come cheap, however, with a ticket price for the Wallbox Quasar units – manufactured in Europe and pictured above – likely to be in the order of around $10,000.
Nissan’s Ben Warren says the REVS trial means that the necessary volume of the Wallbox units will be available in Australia by the end of the year.
By that time, Nissan Leaf owners should at least be able to power their house, in what is known as Vehicle-to-Home, meaning that they run their own appliances from the car, rather than drawing from the grid.
Full Vehicle-to-Grid capability is more complex, however, and it is not clear that this will be ready by the end of the year, although Warren is hopeful and the REVS program should speed up the process – a lot of collaboration and certification involving car makers, charging companies, retailers, network owners and market operators.
JetCharge says the wall box will transform how we view vehicles, transport and energy. And although expensive, it will give access to at 40kWh in the Nissan Leaf, and will cost less than a standard Tesla Powerwall 2.