One of the biggest drains on an EV’s battery power and range is the car’s climate control system. That’s especially true in the winter time, when some EVs struggle to generate enough electric heat to keep a car’s cabin cozy. The clever, clever people at Bosch looked at the way EVs were keeping their passengers comfortable and realized it doesn’t have to be that way- and they’ve introduced a new thermal management system (read, “heat pump”) that will keep drivers toasty without making them sacrifice driving range.
How does Bosch plan to do it? By diverting waste heat from the regenerative braking and electrical components into the cabin through a series of pumps and valves that circulate the air as needed. According to Bosch, their new system could significantly reduce the electrical load put on a car’s battery, resulting in a 25% increase in overall winter range compared to “conventional” electric cars (which, apparently, are a thing now).
The official Bosch explanation is below:
In battery-driven powertrains, heating and cooling play a significantly greater role than in gasoline or diesel engines, since without a combustion engine, the vehicle does not have a generous supply of heat … for this reason, the passenger compartment is heated using a purely electrical system. The electricity it needs comes from the battery. This in turn impacts range: In winter and summer, roughly half the energy stored in the battery goes into regulating the temperature of the passenger compartment.
The system is on display at this week’s Frankfurt auto show, which has been largely overshadowed by the news out of Volkswagen. Still, with the clever air pump and a few new aero tweaks, the concept EV from Bosch promises to take huge steps towards easing the general public’s lingering anxieties about EVs.