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Renault subsidiary to drive smart grid charging developments

Groupe Renault has created a new subsidiary to spearhead developments in smart charging, vehicle-to-grid interaction and second-life batteries.

Renault ZOE Z.E. 40

The new subsidiary will invest in the field of smart grids.

Intended to help accelerate electric vehicle take-up, Renault Energy Services will operate in much the same way as a start-up and will invest in smart grid-related projects by developing partnerships with relevant stakeholders.

Smart charging – which controls vehicle charging in line with grid loads as well as customer needs – is expected to play a key role in enabling the grid to keep up with expanding EV usage as the UK moves away from conventional petrol and diesel vehicles.

Highlighting the impact that smart charging networks are expected to have on the EV industry, Renault said their usage would enable more economical, lower-carbon electricity.

Gilles Normand, SVP, Electric Vehicles, said: “Investing in smart grids is key to both reinforcing the lead we enjoy in the European electric vehicle market and accelerating the EV industry’s scale-up.”

Renault Energy Services will also put focus on development of vehicle-to-grid projects, which enable EVs to provide electricity to the grid during peak hours, and projects involving second-life batteries, which can be used for energy storage needs including at homes and office buildings, once they are no longer suitable for EV use.

The announcement follows Renault’s publication last week of its ‘Drive The Future” five-year plan in which the group said it is aiming to be a leader in electrified technology, with 50% of its global product range featuring the technology by 2022.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 14 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. Natalie works across the magazine portfolio and updates the company websites with daily news, interviews and road test content.

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