General Motors has introduced the new ‘GM Energy’ storage subsidiary to create, what it calls, “a holistic ecosystem of energy management” system for its EV customers.
In essence, GM Energy will help owners of Ultium-based electric vehicles lower their energy bills at home using the EVs as back-up generators, courtesy of GM’s bi-directional, vehicle-to-home (V2H) and vehicle-to-grid (V2G) charging applications. The concept would also provide a lifeline during power outages.
It’s even been suggested that GM Energy’s services will “enable the sale of energy from EV and stationary storage batteries” back to grid during high peak periods. Though not explicitly stated, this could be realized potentially through lower lease payments, or, more likely, through credit notices on owner’s home electricity bills.
The GM Energy business will be broken down into ‘Ultium Home’ and ‘Ultium Commercial’ charters, catering to residential homes and businesses respectively, and ‘Ultium Charge 360.’ The latter was rolled out in April last year after GM signed agreements with seven charging network providers in a bid to make finding public charging points, regardless of the provider, more convenient for GM EV customers.
The end goal for GM Energy, which will work with numerous “large-scale companies across the US,” is for the new microgrid ecosystem to replace home generators. Indeed, GM has confirmed it will work with California’s Pacific Gas and Electric on a pilot scheme to test the campaign in 2023, with software, stationary storage equipment and solar cells compatible with V2H and V2G vehicles also said to be rolled out.
To further this new energy management infrastructure, GM has also stated it will continue its development work on hydrogen fuel cells.