The E-Fleet research project looks into suitable IT solutions, energy management and business models to boost the attractiveness of electromobility for small companies.
The team from the Fraunhofer Institute IAO in Germany believes that corporate fleets are suitable candidates for pioneering electric car-sharing – the SMEs are always looking how to cut costs and most business journeys they conduct are not longer than 100 km.
The concept, backed by German Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, aims at developing a complex solution that would make it possible for several companies to share one fleet of electric cars.
The team is now designing solutions for user-friendly car-reservation system, straightforward billing and ecological and cost-effective charging. The trickiest aspect, according to the researchers, is how to reconcile the vehicles charging and operating schedules.
The conceptual design and implementation phase will have been completed by 2014 when a pilot scheme will be launched. Among these testing the scheme in real application scenarios will be the Stuttgart Engineering Park and the Technology Centre Munich.
The researchers believe that such scheme might help Germany to meet the government’s target of having one million electric cars in the country’s roads by 2020. Though electric cars are slowly gaining popularity, the country is so far nowhere near this milestone.