Published on September 13th, 2018 | by Subhash Nair0
Audi’s e-tron is Going to Change the Car Charging Game
The e-tron marks the dawning of a new era for Audi. The brand with the four rings is being transformed from a classic automotive manufacturer into a premium mobility systems supplier. The Audi e-tron Charging Service will be part of a broad-based offering for charging and provides Europe-wide access to the public charging infrastructure. Audi’s proprietary charging card brings together over 72,000 charging points operated by 220 providers, for unlimited, trouble-free electric mobility.
Audi has put an end to fears over the car’s range. One key factor, alongside giving the Audi e-tron a sufficient range for everyday driving, is a broad-based choice of charging options, whether at home or out and about. Drivers who charge their e-tron overnight and set off the next morning with a full battery don’t have to worry about stopping at a charging station during their normal daily drive. The range of more than 400 kilometers (248.5 mi) in the realistic WLTP cycle enables electric driving without compromise. For longer distances, Audi offers a smart solution in the shape of the e-tron Charging Service, which handles the charging process swiftly and simply.
Easy: barrier-free access with a single contract
Through its new charging service, Audi provides all e-tron customers and therefore also owners of plug-in models with access to around 80 percent of all public charging stations in Europe. At market launch there are already over 72,000 charging points available in 16 EU countries, with a further eight markets in Eastern Europe due to follow in a few months’ time. Billing is handled centrally under a single contract, with standard, clear pricing models.
The service could not be easier to use: Whether AC or DC, 11 kW or 150 kW – just one card, the e-tron Charging Service Card, is all customers need to start the charging process. Many charging stations can also be activated by scanning a QR code with a smartphone. Customers complete a one-time registration for the service in the myAudi portal and take out an individual charging contract. All charging processes are automatically billed together at the end of the month. Customers can use the myAudi portal to view their current charging history at any time, review their current bills and manage their contract.
Trendsetting: route planning by app
Longer journeys with stops for charging are just as straightforward as charging itself. They can be planned either ahead of time in the myAudi app or directly in the car. In both cases the customer is shown the appropriate route with the required charging points. The navigation system considers not only the battery’s charge but also the traffic situation, and includes the required charging time in its arrival time calculation. The system includes the locations throughout Europe of DC charging stations, at which the Audi e-tron can be charged with direct current, as well as most AC stations for charging with alternating current. Charging planning is continuously updated to the prevailing conditions. For example, an alternative suggestion is made if a targeted DC quick-charging station can no longer be reached. Charge planning is synchronized seamlessly between the display in the car and in the myAudi smartphone app. During an active charge process, it displays the charging time remaining and the battery’s current charge status. Customers can also opt to receive push notifications as soon as they can continue their journey. Advance climate control can equally be managed with the app.
Convenient: plug & charge
From 2019 onward, charging will be even more convenient for Audi customers. This is when the plug & charge function will be introduced. It enables the Audi e-tron to authenticate itself at charging stations via state-of-the-art cryptographic procedures, after which it is authorized – a card will no longer be necessary. All Audi e-tron models rolling off the assembly line from mid-2019 will support this function as standard. Customers can also use plug & charge privately to unlock their connect charging system. This then eliminates the need to enter a PIN to protect against unauthorized use.
Quick: charging at up to 150 kW
For lengthy trips – driving to a holiday destination, for instance – a quick-charging facility is essential. That is why the Volkswagen Group with Audi and Porsche, the BMW Group, Daimler AG and the Ford Motor Company have founded the joint venture Ionity. The Audi e-tron is the first series-production model capable of charging with up to 150 kW at Ionity’s high-output DC charging stations. This means it is all set for the next long-distance stretch of a journey in approximately half an hour. The e-tron Charging Service covers Ionity’s quick-charging network, which is undergoing gradual expansion and will already comprise 400 stations by 2020. It will supply cars mainly with eco-electricity. In addition, further quick-charging stations from other providers complete the e-tron Charging Service range along the whole long-distance route.
Versatile: all-round charging solution including at home
Audi offers various solutions for charging in the garage at home: The standard compact mobile charging system can be used with either a 230 volt household outlet or a 400 volt three-phase outlet. The optional connect charging system doubles the charging power to as much as 22 kW. The second on-board charger required for this will be available as an option at some point in 2019.
In conjunction with a compatible home energy management system, it offers intelligent functions such as charging when electricity is less expensive or with on-site solar power if there is a photovoltaic system on the roof. In addition, in selected markets Audi will provide green electricity offerings for charging at home in collaboration with local energy suppliers.
Helpful: Audi Mobility Check
Customers buying an Audi e-tron can check online which options are available in their garage using the Audi Mobility Check on the Audi homepage. This will provide an initial assessment of whether a house’s electrical system is suitable for charging. Home Check provides customers with even more information. In selected markets, the local Audi dealer searches a vast network for a qualified electrician who will investigate the home charging options and even install the necessary technology, if desired.