Volkswagen wants to make electric vehicle charging as painless as possible.
The German automaker is working on an EU research project called “V-Charge,” teaming up with six national and international partners to automate the process of electric vehicle charging. Essentially, the technology would enable a vehicle owner to use a smartphone application to tell its vehicle to find the closest available charging station and charge up the vehicle.
Through the wonders of autonomous driving, the vehicle would automatically look for an empty charging space that inductively charges its battery, and once the charging process is finished, it’ll look for a conventional parking space. Standing for Valet Charge, V-Charge is currently being tested with a Volkswagen e-Golf.
SEE ALSO: 2015 Volkswagen e-Golf Review
The company is being careful to use off-the-shelf sensors and technologies already found in current cars so that it can implement V-Charge quickly to the market. Currently, it uses four wide-angle cameras, three stereo cameras, a dozen ultrasonic sensors and car-to-infrastructure protocols to help the vehicle drive safely on its own to an available charging space. When it comes time to picking up the vehicle, the owner can simply access the app again and the car will return to the original location where the driver dropped it off.
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