Smart ‘mobile EV charger’ NRGkick launched in Benelux
Belgian EV-Quip is launching for the Benelux market the NRGkick, an Austrian-developed smart mobile EV charger that claims to make a wall box obsolete. It can replace the standard charging cable of any electric car and offers app-controlled smart AC-charging options from 2.3 kW up to 22 kW, depending on any available power plug. It also delivers (optional) smart features as time-controlled and solar-panel-only charging on top of elaborate automated statistics.
No more fixed wall box
The NRGkick is developed by an Austrian start-up, DiniTech, founded in 2012 by automotive engineer Dietmar Niederl. The basic idea was a smart solution to make a fixed wall box for charging an electric car at home or work obsolete. It can be used anywhere an electric plug is available, from the average 10A domestic plug up to industrial 32A plugs, using three phases on a 400V network.
It’s a set with a 5 or 7,5 m charging cable with an incorporated control module and an optional set of plug adapters, featuring Bluetooth connection to a smartphone app or – with another optional module – connection to the cloud and remote access. Dependent on the version chosen, 16A or 32A, and the additional options, prices vary between 800 and 1 600 euros roughly.
Choosing charging levels
The control unit lets you choose the best charging level for a given location and time frame, from 2.3 kW to 22 kW if the car allows this, but has built-in safety mechanisms and automatic plug recognition to avoid user mistakes.
While most standard cables coming with the car only provide up to 10A in one phase, the NRGkick claims to be ten times faster in charging if the appropriate power plug is available.
Time-controlled charging is one of the features, for instance, allowing to charge a maximum during the day when your solar panels produce most, and a minimum during the night when you’re dependent on the grid. You can program it to charge with surplus solar energy only, that otherwise would be delivered back to the net.
The smartphone app gives an overview of all charging parameters at any time and can deliver automated monthly reports, among others, making it possible for an employee to deliver his boss detailed reports of how much electricity was charged at home with the company car.
Only when it’s cheap
Future developments promise to charge your electric car only when the energy is as cheap as you would like it to be, and to offer ‘energy demand management’, charging as fast as possible, taking into account the energy consumption of other devices in your household.
The NRGkick was presented at the Brussels Motor Show for the first time in Belgium in 2018. Hamont-Achel-based (Limbourg) industrial machine specialist Euroquip CEO, Stephan Vandebeeck, has set up a daughter company EV-Quip for the distribution of the NRGkick in the Benelux, for which it has the exclusive rights. But it’s also available online at the manufacturer’s webshop, among others.