Volkswagen has been handed an Auto Bild/Computer Bild 2015 Connected Car award for its innovative V-Charge project that combines the best traits of autonomous driving and wireless charging.
V-Charge stands for Valet Charging and is in response to drivers’ affinities toward valet parking at restaurants, events, clubs, etc. It takes advantage of recent advances in autonomous driving, most notably in the area of self parking, while providing amenities for EV charging without the need to physically plug in.
Say you’re going to work in the morning and drive your autonomous-capable electric vehicle to the train station to take the commuter train. You get out in front of the station and engage auto-parking mode; your EV drives itself to the nearest wireless charging enable parking spot and parks itself over the charge pad; when the battery is fully charged, your vehicle backs out and parks itself in a “regular spot,” freeing up the charge port for another EV; and when you finish your work day, you have fully charged EV you can call via your Smartphone to the drop-off area to come and pick you up.
The V-Charge project is a partnership between VW, Bosch, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich, the Technical University of Braunschweig, the University of Parma and Oxford University.
This marks the third annual Connected Car Award handed out by Auto Bild (a leading German automotive glossy magazine) and Computer Bild (Europe’s leading computer publication), both of which are published by Berlin-based Axel Springer SE. Experts from both magazines pre-select a short-list of potential winners and then readers select the winners.