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The savy EV drivers out there may want to sit up and take note of this new charger.
http://electric-village.net/2014/05/13/installing-uks-first-electric-vehicle-smart-chargers-is-time-rewarded/
It offers charging at reduced tariffs so driving an EV becomes even cheaper!!!
It is available under the governments home charge grant but drivers will have to pay an additional amount to cover the cost and installation. This unit is not cheap and cheerful it's very high end - any general question please contact Stuart @ electric village, I'd be happy to address any installation questions as there installation partner.
I'll let all you EV guys work out how much cheaper your driving will become if you had one of these.
 

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Ampera aka IGOR
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Could it mainly be aimed at:-
1 - cars that do not have inbuilt timers (if there are any)
or
2 - the ability of the electricity supplier to vary the charging period depending on demand and a pre-selected departure time..
 

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Driving yet another EV!
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I don't think the article concentrates on the right part of what this charger can do - the key thing seems to be that it is internet connected and can turn the charging on and off based on almost anything (off-peak being the given example). It may be that this is a very neat idea, however I am also very concerned about "Electrical installers specifying the Etrel smart charging system receive a £100 fee in addition to the cost of installation". Now shift this to a different field to see how wrong it is "Doctors prescribing Pharmco's new drug receive a £100 fee in addition to the cost of the medication". I expect that installers will be making all sorts of interesting claims during surveys in order to earn the extra fee.
 

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I saw these recently at an event in Barcelona and I've been waiting for them to come out over here, I was really impressed (though as a rule I am usually quite easily impressed - I will admit I was drawn to their stand by the fact one of their points had a wooden front)

The main benefit of these was that they were a home charger with mobile communications and could be controlled with an app on your smart phone. The rep there showed me how you can log onto the post from anywhere, check how much power you had in the car and start and end charge sessions. You could also plan ahead and charge during off peak hours. There was also very detailed analysis available of all of your past sessions; how long you charged for, what it cost, the power you took etc...

You would assume also that if something went wrong, the company could log into the unit and perform remote diagnostics/fixes.
 

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Not sure it gets you much more if your car already has something like carwings.

Now what would be cool is a charger that you get your electricity from a provider who on the fly negotiates the cheapest rates, so effectively have the electricity companies bid to charge your car. You plug in, it finds you who has the cheapest rate at that exact moment and supplies it. That would(as users grow in numbers) for the energy companies to open up the trading markets to them public rather than just keeping it to the suppliers. You then just get a single bill at the end of the month and they settle with the providers
 

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Not sure it gets you much more if your car already has something like carwings.

Now what would be cool is a charger that you get your electricity from a provider who on the fly negotiates the cheapest rates, so effectively have the electricity companies bid to charge your car. You plug in, it finds you who has the cheapest rate at that exact moment and supplies it. That would(as users grow in numbers) for the energy companies to open up the trading markets to them public rather than just keeping it to the suppliers. You then just get a single bill at the end of the month and they settle with the providers
That's *exactly* what I was thinking when I read it, and wondered if that was actually what they were alluding to. If that's the case, then it could well be a game changer. Sadly, I suspect that isn't the case, though.
 

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There is an idea floating about for the later versions of OCPP that a driver could sign up and link their EV charging account (be in Polar, CYC, Source, whatever...) to their home energy supplier. At the end of the month their usage on public posts would then be added to their home energy bill at the tariff they have with their supplier. It's a way off yet, but it's on the table
 

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Driving yet another EV!
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The rep there showed me how you can log onto the post from anywhere, check how much power you had in the car and start and end charge sessions.
Unfortunately, no matter what the rep showed you, there is no way for a car that uses J1772 signalling (through a Type-1 or Type-2 plug) to signal this data to the unit. This is the sort of misinformation that I fear we will see lots of.
 

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Driving yet another EV!
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There is an idea floating about for the later versions of OCPP that a driver could sign up and link their EV charging account (be in Polar, CYC, Source, whatever...) to their home energy supplier. At the end of the month their usage on public posts would then be added to their home energy bill at the tariff they have with their supplier. It's a way off yet, but it's on the table
I would very much support this, even with a small admin fee per charge, but if the levels approach what we are seeing from Chargemaster then I would rather use diesel.
 

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I would very much support this, even with a small admin fee per charge, but if the levels approach what we are seeing from Chargemaster then I would rather use diesel.
Herein lies the problem. If I could charge all over with Ecotricity (with other options free or PAYG) then I'd quite happily take my kWh charges on to my home bill. But with the "admin" and other "overheads" that apparently force Chargemaster to charge SO MUCH for their electricity, added to the decision to charge for time rather than power, I'd sooner walk to the coast and the suppliers be damned.
 

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I have heard/read reports (not sure where) that some charging stations will talk to your supplier and you can get a EV tariff.
Effective when there is a grid surplus the power will be cheap and the car will charge at an point when electricity is less than Xp kWh set by the user.

Not sure how soon this will happen or if this was just a generic in the future remark
 

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Hi all, allow us to resuscitate this old thread since we found out today it has been left unanswered for much too long! We'll be happy to answer all questions about our product, but in brief, what we see as our advantage compared to most other units is:
- SW interface included with every charging station (the CS is connected with Ethernet to the local network, after which the user can access the interface in any standard browser - on the phone, PC, and so on)
- ability to lock the station only to your users (based on RFID cards) - it is a simple SW setting, while all the HW is already built into every charger that also comes with RFID cards included
- detailed stats and reports on all past charging (for all users) and an instant overview of ongoing charging process
- setting a daily charging plan or max. allowed current for the station, simply in the interface
- remote firmware updates
- quality materials used (brushed aluminium and polycarbonate glass) and unique overall design (e.g. stylish cable holder for models with tethered charging cable)

This answer is starting to sound like a sales pitch, while we'd much rather answer the questions that are actually on your minds - so go ahead.
 

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@ Dean - we used to have an online configurator where you could order directly. The price was something above one thousand pounds for the most common configuration and without installation (and obviously without government grant). Nowadays, Chris Everitt handles our installations and should be able to get you a more exact quote if you'd like.

@ Paul - actually it's both, since the options are all there and the customers decide what they actually need. RFID module might be a bit of an 'overkill' for most ordinary home installations, but we decided to have a one-size-fits-all product in the beginning (since we are not aiming for mass market anyway).
 

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Driving yet another EV!
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@ Dean - we used to have an online configurator where you could order directly. The price was something above one thousand pounds for the most common configuration and without installation (and obviously without government grant). Nowadays, Chris Everitt handles our installations and should be able to get you a more exact quote if you'd like.

@ Paul - actually it's both, since the options are all there and the customers decide what they actually need. RFID module might be a bit of an 'overkill' for most ordinary home installations, but we decided to have a one-size-fits-all product in the beginning (since we are not aiming for mass market anyway).
Pretty much everyone in the UK is eligible for a free charger, so what does this charger do that is worth over £1000 more (presumably plus fitting plus VAT) than the existing options?
 

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Hi Matt,

We were accredited in the previous grant scheme and will apply for accreditation also in 2015, which should then substantially reduce the price. For some main "extra" features please refer to the previously posted list. I might add two things - the charger goes up to 22 kW (not all do), and all the necessary safety/protection equipment is already fitted inside. For example, you will rarely find a RCD device Type B (required by Renault ZE Ready, and in some countries by default) inside a charging unit (usually it is installed on the installation side since it is quite costly - this artificially lowers the price of the charging units, but raises installation costs which the user has to pay in the end.) With Etrel units, these hidden costs are avoided and the units are more future-proof. If you use the charging scheduling feature, you can also automatically save extra pounds if you have a dual electricity tariff (by simply setting the plan once and then charging in the scheduled mode instead of with full power all the time).

edit: It should be added that this charger is not a perfect fit for all users - it wasn't meant to be. It's best positioned when used in a semi-private environment, catering for EVs with more powerful chargers (Tesla, Zoe, and others).
 
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