More From Toyota – Remote EV Charging

Toyota is bringing more than just cars to the Tokyo Motor Show 2011 – it’s also bringing its H2V (home to vehicle) Manager system for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. The new system will go on sale along with the Prius Plug-In Hybrid in early 2012.

While the idea of monitoring total energy use via smart phone is not exactly a new concept, Toyota is bringing a new dimension by prioritizing management of EV/PHV charging. The H2V system connects to a PC, television, or smart phone, at which point the user can check out their power consumption and tell their car when to start charging the batteries.

Energy Demand Too High?

For Japanese EV owners, exceeding the level of energy their utility contract allows them to pull from the grid is not uncommon. Even those of us without an EV have seen the breaker tripped if too many appliances are going at once (and the first time it happened to me, I spent half the day without power before I found the switch to reset it).

The H2V system monitors power consumption against the contractually designated limit and switches off the car if it looks like there’s too much going on. Once demand within the house goes on, the system restarts charging. Not having to negotiate a new utility contract takes the H2V from a neat idea to something that’s actually rather convenient.  With standardized charging equipment, it’s useful even for non-Toyota EV/PHV owners (I think).

No word on whether or not the H2V will be available to consumers outside Japan – but if it is, would you go for it? Let us know in the comments, below.

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Charis Michelsen

spent 7 years living in Germany and Japan, studying both languages extensively, doing translation and education with companies like Bosch, Nissan, Fuji Heavy, and others. Charis has a Bachelor of Science degree in biology and currently lives in Chicago, Illinois. She also believes that Janeway was the best Star Trek Captain.