GM Energy Introduces Vehicle-To-Home Charging Solution

The first vehicle supported will be the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV First-Edition RST2.

GM’s vehicle-to-home charging unit will first be compatible with the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV First-Edition RST2. (GM)

The benefits of EVs are still being explored and introduced to the world. The latest is GM Energy's new bidirectional charging system.

With a host of EVs on the market and more on the way, GM Energy unveiled its Vehicle-to-Home (V2H) bidirectional charging solution. The wall box and companion apps will initially be available on the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV First-Edition RST2. Compatibility with other vehicles under the GM umbrella will be supported in the future.

The company says that its product suite of bundled hardware and software can be tailored to customer needs and budgets. GM Energy's online portal will guide them through the options and help educate potential customers about the technology and its benefits.

GM’s V2H home charger includes a 25-foot (7.6 m) cord and has a maximum charging output of 19.2kW. (GM)

Currently, GM Energy is offering a wall unit that, when properly installed, will supply a home with power from a compatible EV. It also plans to introduce a battery storage solution and integrated solar installations.

GM Energy is partnering with Qmerit, an EV charging station installation company, to handle installations and local permitting issues. At launch, the system will be available in five states: California, Florida, Michigan, New York, and Texas.

The company is determined to take something that's been traditionally complex and make it easy for customers. "We are a one-stop shop, white-glove service from beginning to end, and through the duration of use," Wade Sheffer, vice president of GM Energy, told SAE MedWhile the initial vehicle will be the Silverado EV, GM did say that it anticipates the following 2024 MY vehicles will eventually be compatible: Sierra EV Denali, Chevrolet Blazer EV, Chevrolet Equinox EV, and Cadillac Lyriq. Sheffer told SAE Media that bringing other vehicles into the mix will require either a software or hardware update, potentially both. Starting with model year 2026, all GM EVs will support bidirectional charging.

If you happen to live in a mixed EV household, Sheffer sees a future where GM Energy's devices work on EVs beyond the GM lineup. "Our initial rollout is with for GM vehicles only. When possible, when the technology is there and it's available? Absolutely, it would make sense for us to look at the wider market," Sheffer said.

With the news, GM Energy is entering a space that's not traditionally part of an automaker's business. Outside of Honda with its decades-old lineup of generators and Tesla with its Powerwall, home energy management is relatively new to automotive OEMs.

GM is now joining Ford which has its own V2H solution for the F-150 Lightning and Kia which is partnering with third-party charging-station company Wallbox to bring bidirectional charging to the EV9. Not only does this bode well for the owners of these vehicles, but it's also a solution for balancing the grid during peak usage.

One of the more interesting aspects of the transition to EVs is the potential to use the vehicle in your driveway or garage to power your home. Bi-directional charging or V2H is an additional benefit of EV ownership. With it, owners can use the battery pack in their vehicles to run their home. A huge benefit in areas where blackouts are a regular occurrence.

These vehicles and their compatible wall chargers also have the potential to reduce a home's electric bill by charging at night when rates are cheaper (or via solar during the day) and discharging into the home during peak-rate times, at least in areas where there is support from the electric utility for this feature. When it works, an EV could be a benefit to a utility, especially during times of high electricity demand. If EVs can be put into service to pull hundreds or even thousands of houses off the grid, it would reduce the need for rolling blackouts to protect the grid.

One irony of all this is that one of the main arguments against EVs is that they will bring down the electrical grid. In reality, they could be incredibly beneficial to balancing the grid during peak usage.

As V2H continues to roll out, there will be employment opportunities for highly trained electricians to install these systems. As with any product, if it catches on with customers, manufacturing could also ramp up. "We are launching in five critical and key states. And as we launch, we'll look at opportunities where it's necessary," Sheffer said.

GM Energy's V2H product site is live with step-by-step guidance to determine the best system for your home.