Me, My Electric Vehicle and … My Smartphone!

By April 29, 2010

Image via Wikipedia “A day in the life with the Nissan LEAF” is a video which shows how electric vehicles (EV) will change consumers’ daily lives. With an iPhone, users will be able to control their cars from their sofa. Fi

rst, an email prompts them when the charging is done. Then, another application allows them to turn on the air conditioner or heater before the drive. Bye bye first miles driven in glacial conditions in winter! During the long drive (a shopping day in a suburban mall for example), consumers can find in advance where charging spots are located, so they can charge their car when they get there. Nissan shows us an interesting vision of our future, which could be here sooner than you imagine.

Since this weekend, inhabitants of California have been able to test the first US shopping center with charging stations for electric vehicles. Thanks to a partnership between South Coast Plaza, a mall situated near San Jose, and Coulomb Technologies, a company specialized in charging-station infrastructure, Nissan’s vision is already a reality. “Shopping centers are some of the perfect places for the installation of networked charging stations because people spend several hours shopping and dining,” said Richard Lowenthal, CEO of Coulomb Technologies in a press release. Coulomb markets an open driver system network: the ChargePoint Network. Via smartphone, drivers can manage their EV, receiving their charging status by SMS or localizing unoccupied charging stations, for example.

Between fiction and reality, electric vehicles are becoming a new way to move. Besides technological questions, environmental answers and design questioning, EV will definitively change the relationship between drivers and cars. Into this passionate relationship will enter a third party: the smartphone. Like a remote control, mobile will become a link between driver and machine.

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