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Automated EV parking and charging being trialled in Germany

Bosch, together with the Volkswagen subsidiary Cariad, have used the current CES show in Las Vegas to demonstrate a new technology that aims to remove the driver from the parking/charging process.

Bosch refer to the process as automated valet charging, based on their automated valet parking system. 

The driverless vehicle is automatically guided to the parking space, where a robot opens the charging flap and automatically inserts the charging cable, removing it again once the battery is fully charged. 

The car then drives back to a regular parking space, freeing up the charge spot for the next vehicle. All this makes it possible for several vehicles to be recharged and parked without human interaction, increasing the efficiency of the charging infrastructure, optimising the use of chargepoints and saving customers the bother of long waits.

Bosch and Cariad are currently testing the necessary technology in Bosch’s development parking garage in Ludwigsburg. 

The partners believe that easy, straightforward charging is at the top of the wish list for electric car drivers, but they are often faced with long queues at chargepoints and can be subject to blocking fees if they leave their cars charging for too long.

By addressing these challenges, automated valet charging greatly increases customer convenience when charging EVs. What’s more, the technology offers a range of advantages for automakers, charge spot operators, parking garage operators, and energy suppliers.

Manuel Maier, vice president of the cross-domain Level 4 parking product area at Bosch said: ‘Automation plays a key role in the mobility revolution and the transition to electromobility. Our two services – automated valet parking and automated valet charging – make the mobility experience much smoother for users

‘Making it straightforward to recharge electric vehicles allays people’s misgivings about range, and is essential if electromobility is to find widespread acceptance. With this in mind, Bosch and Cariad can make parking and charging even more efficient and convenient.’

Rolf Dubitzky, head of parking at Cariad, also sees great potential in this collaboration: ‘We’re particularly pleased to be shaping the future of automated parking and charging together with Bosch. Our collaboration allows us to test the technologies at an early stage of vehicle development, so that the end product is reliable and offers customers the best possible user experience.’

Automated valet parking has been in operation in the P6 parking garage at Stuttgart airport for about a year and Bosch are now beginning to equip other parking garages throughout Germany with the same technology.

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