Electric car drivers suffering range anxiety have just been thrown a vehicular Valium. Nation-E, a Swiss company that made its name in smart meters and energy storage, has developed a charging concept designed to top up flat batteries in exhausted electric cars.
The Angel Car Mobile Service Unit works much like a traditional breakdown service. The unit comprises a 230V charger located in the back of a van and connects to the stricken EV via a tube. Over a 15-minute charge period, the Angel Car supplies a dead battery with 2-3kWh of juice -- enough to travel a further 25 miles.
According to Nation-E, its chargers will work with any type of electric car. The units are fitted with an electronic control system that communicates with your car to determine the quantity and intensity of charge the battery can receive. The company says the charging unit can be installed in any type of vehicle -- although the service would probably work best if the charging station was installed in a hybrid car and not the petrol-powered Citroen Berlingo pictured above.
We think this is a genuinely clever idea, but we're not sure it's strictly necessary. Sure, traditional breakdown services such as Green Flag or the AA don't offer to recharge your stranded electric car, but they do offer to tow customers home, or to take them to a nearby garage (or charging station) should they get stuck.
Still, we're giving Nation-E a big thumbs up for the idea. If nothing else, perhaps it'll convince traditional breakdown services to buy the concept, invent their own or at least market 'tow me home' services to electric car owners.
Do you own an electric car? Do you think mobile charging solutions are a good idea? Let us know in the comments below.