/  Harri Iisakka

The best EV brands for smart charging

Person plugging the charging cord in its electric car

Some electric vehicle brands have a higher level of digital capabilities than others. At the ultimate end of the spectrum, certain car manufacturers have poor or almost non-existing capabilities. These differences are crucial in smart charging and the overall digital experience. We’ll cover the best and the worst EV brands for smart charging.

Connections and reliability of EV’s cloud are the most important factors

Connections and cloud services include data storage and processing to remote control and monitoring. The reliability and stability of these services are fundamental to the success of smart charging. However, for these features to work effectively, the cloud services that manage them must be dependable.

Reliable cloud services are also necessary for managing other aspects of the electric vehicle experience, such as software updates, remote diagnostics, and maintenance notifications. These services are essential for keeping the car running smoothly, detecting issues early, and installing the latest software updates. Without dependable cloud services, external parties like us cannot control electric vehicles.

Tesla, Volkswagen, and BMW are some of the best EVs for smart charging

There are a dozen of EV brands that support smart charging perfectly. In addition to TeslaVW, and BMW, all Volkswagen Group brands, such as Audi and Porsche, have excellent smart charging capabilities. Of course, there remain minor differences between brands. In general, these EVs can receive smart charging information within a short timeframe of seconds.

In the big picture, all that matters is the reliability of how well these cars stay awake and take control regardless of the time and place. Should you have or consider buying Tesla, Volkswagen, BMW, AudiSeatSkoda, PorscheJaguar, or Ford – to name a few – you’re in a smart position.

Some older models from Renault and Nissan have limited capabilities

While Renault’s and Nissan’s newer models support Synergi’s smart charging, their older models are challenging to control occasionally.

For example, Renault’s Zoe models have a 3-year free software license that enables users to see the car’s location. After the subscription ends, users and we at Synergi cannot send smart charging commands to the vehicle. This is an unfortunate blocker for saving on charging costs. As another example, while we support Nissan Ariya, the widely driven Leaf model cannot be controlled by us. We hope that the car manufacturers will update the software systems of these older models, but we are not counting on that 100%.

Current blockers for smart charging Mercedes Benz and most Volvo EVs

Unfortunately, there are some fundamental reasons why it’s currently practically impossible to charge some of the most loved EVs in a smart way. Out of all the EVs, there are only a few brands that Synergi doesn’t support – yet 😉. This short list includes Mercedes BenzVolvo BEVsOpelPeugeot, and Citroen

What’s blocking us from helping these brands’ drivers charge smarter?

For Mercedes Benz electric vehicles, the manufacturer (MB) blocks all the external players from controlling the charging when SoC is below 50%. Their intention is good, but for us, starting and stopping charging is only possible sometimes. Therefore, we are unable to smart charge MBs currently.

For Volvo BEVs, on the other hand, the “newer” operating system requires a Bluetooth connection when setting up the connection to the Volvo cloud. As we’re sitting at Synergi HQ, it is very challenging for us to confirm the connection via Bluetooth, and therefore we are still exploring other ways to control charging.

Lastly, for the beloved French EVs (Opel, Peugeot, and Citroen), their cloud systems must be more mature to send start and stop charging commands. We are waiting for the Frenchmen to step up their cloud game, enabling us to help EV drivers save money and nature.

Charge smarter with Synergi

Synergi’s software allows you to charge when electricity is the cheapest – without external hardware. See all the supported models here and start charging smarter with Synergi!

Harri Iisakka