Some of the latest EV models have a full-charge cruising range catalog value of over 300 miles, but the actual cruising range is shorter than that, and energy consumption increases significantly when driving at high speed on a highway. Therefore due to insufficient EV range, it is indispensable to replenish and charge the EV for medium- and long-distance driving. Also, EV owners who do not have access to at-home charging due to street parking require a smart charging and routing solution.
DC fast-charging stations have been increasing in recent years, but unlike gas stations, it is not yet ubiquitous, and it is not safe to assume you will naturally find a charging station en route to your destination. This is the current EV reality.
Also, even if you find the station, it may be outside of your charging network subscription. Or when you arrive at the station, there is charging congestion with long waiting lines, or the charger may even be out of service.
EV battery capacity is expanding, however, the increasing size of an EV battery increases the time to charge. Charging stations are implementing new technology to increase the charging speed, however, it still remains much slower than refueling an internal combustion engine’s tank. Additionally, it is important to charge your EV within certain battery levels to maximize time spent recharging. Congestion at the charging station, and distance outside of your optimal route, and the need to time a recharge depending on current batter levels all increase the frustration and anxiety EV drivers experience.
Since the battery capacity is expanding due to the extension of the electric range incompletely (not the same as internal combustion engine vehicle), even if there is an increase in the output power of the charger, the charging time tends to be the same as or even longer than before. Then, it is necessary to go to a station that is operating at a safe timing in consideration of the remaining battery power and is likely to be able to charge the required amount without charge congestion and without hesitation. That said, going to a distant station where there is little charging traffic means wasting time and energy by driving longer drive distances.
In order to safely and efficiently drive medium- to long-distances, the route with the shortest total time (drive time, expected waiting time at the station, charging time) is taken into consideration by checking various routes and charging station options. However, it is difficult to manually check and determine this before the start of your drive, much less during the trip.
EV Co-Driver solves all that difficulty
EV Co-Driver is an EV-specialized navigation app for iOS/Android smartphones released by Kanematsu in March, 2020. EV Co-Driver is built on the basis of the concept that “EV Driving should be as easy as driving a gasoline car” EV Co-Driver allows the user to input their destination current battery charge level. Using best-in-class optimization algorithms, we will route the user to their destination. Should the EV require a charge en route, EV Co-Driver’s smart system will identify the best charging station available to the driver and reroute automatically.
EV Co-Driver finds the best station from EV go stations nationwide and DRIVEtheARC stations in Northern California, taking into consideration of chargers’ operating conditions, distance and expected waiting time, and starts navigation on the best route. In addition, EV-Co-Driver ver. 2.0.0 or later updated in September 2020 implements turn-by-turn navigation. This will allow you to navigate your entire trip using EV Co-Driver seamlessly.
EV Co-Driver makes EV driving safer and easier.
Good news for California & Nevada EV drivers:
Kanematsu is participating in the “DRIVEtheARC” Project to encourage electric vehicle use in Northern California, a collaborative demonstration project between Japan, the US and the State of California. On September 15, 2020, the DRIVEtheARC Project started the research survey program with gift card rewards for EV drivers using EV Co-Driver app and DRIVEtheARC app. For details, please click here.