Telsa’s Powerwall is one of the most popular home energy storage units on the market, but Toyota is throwing their hats into the ring with their new O-Uchi Kyuden system.
Designed to take advantage of decades of experience with electric vehicles, the O-Uchi Kyuden system has an 8.7 kWh battery that is located outside and powers your home during disruptions. It is connected by a car power supply adapter, a DC-to-DC converter and a hybrid power conditioner that allows the system to work with solar panels.
While these types of home batteries are nothing new, Toyota has some strategies in their sleeves because the O-Uchi Kyuden system can draw energy from hybrid, plug-in hybrid, battery electric and fuel-cell vehicles.
Also read: Mercedes and Vivint Solar team to fight Tesla Powerwall
A short video explains that, during the day, solar panels will power the house as well as recharge O-Uchi Kyuden batteries. Once the sun sets, the house will be powered by batteries as well as vehicles.
The system is ‘smart’ and Toyota mentions four different modes, one of which saves energy during the day and then sells it to energy companies at night when prices are high. The second mode focuses on reducing grid usage by charging the battery during the day through solar panels and then using it to get home at night. Smart mode mixes both approaches, while storage mode keeps the battery fully charged to prepare for disruption.
Speaking of smarts, the system will allow owners to monitor storage capacity, mode of operation and other settings in real-time through a dedicated app. It will also show how much power is being supplied by various sources, including solar panels, vehicles and electric grids.
The O-Uchi Quden system is currently available for pre-order in Japan and is scheduled for release in August via “Home Builders and General Construction Companies”. There is no word on how much the system will cost, but Toyota says it is designed for long service life, high performance and “good value for money”.
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