General Motors is making a significant stride in the electric vehicle (EV) ecosystem by introducing GM Energy, a subsidiary dedicated to manufacturing and selling energy storage and charging equipment to both residential and commercial customers.
Under its Ultium Home division, GM Energy has unveiled a comprehensive range of integrated home bi-directional charging and energy storage solutions, further solidifying its commitment to a sustainable and interconnected energy future.
The Ultium Home Energy Management System presents an opportunity for users to establish their own home microgrid, enhancing energy self-reliance. GM Energy offers three primary equipment packages for residential customers within its Ultium Home portfolio:
Ultium Home Energy System Bundle
This comprehensive package includes the bi-directional charger, known as PowerShift, which can deliver up to 19.2 kW to an EV for optimal Level 2 charging.
It also encompasses the GM Energy PowerBank residential storage battery, available in two models: 5kW/10.6kWh or 7kW/17.7kWh. Multiple PowerBank batteries can be linked together as needed.
V2H Enablement Kit
This option enables up to 9.6 kW of electricity to flow back to the home and supports EV charging. The kit includes an inverter, a home hub, and a backup battery that ensures system restart during grid failures.
PowerBank Residential Storage Batteries
This solution caters to customers who possess EVs with substantial battery capacity, such as the upcoming Hummer EV and Silverado EV. These vehicles could potentially power a home for a week or more, making additional storage batteries unnecessary.
Excluding the PowerBank batteries makes the system more cost-effective.
While GM Energy has not disclosed pricing details for its Ultium Home products, it emphasizes that costs will vary based on installation expenses. The complexity of installation depends on the existing electrical system of the home, ranging from 200 amps to 400 amps, with older systems potentially requiring upgrades.
It’s worth noting that the offerings extend beyond EV owners. Those without an EV can still benefit from a PowerBank battery, using it as an alternative to gasoline-powered backup generators.
Additionally, GM Energy highlights that its storage batteries can integrate into rooftop solar systems, although payment for excess electricity varies according to state and utility regulations.
Mark Lubin, Senior Manager of Strategic Technology Communications at GM, shared insights into GM Energy’s endeavors, mentioning ongoing collaborations with utilities to explore technology applications beyond the vehicle.
He noted that GM Energy aims to introduce new products and functionalities to enable customers to harness the full energy ecosystem, including vehicle-to-grid capabilities.
GM Energy’s ecosystem, which includes products like Ultium Home, is designed to be managed through the GM Energy Cloud. This platform facilitates the management of energy transfer among various components of the GM Energy ecosystem, providing users with enhanced control and visibility.
The move by General Motors into the realm of energy storage and charging signifies a broader shift toward a holistic approach to electric mobility.
While the specific electric vehicles offering vehicle-to-home (V2H) capabilities are yet to be fully disclosed, it is anticipated that the majority of GM’s forthcoming EVs will support this feature, contributing to a more dynamic and adaptable energy landscape.