Nissan has built a demonstration house at its global headquarters in Yokohama, Japan, to show the integration of electric vehicles into domestic energy systems.

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Image: Nissan

The Nissan Energy Home connects car, house and power grids, using the car’s batteries for storage of energy from the house’s solar panels, and to feed back energy to the house from the car as needed: during the day, when the sun is shining, the car stores the solar power, and at night, it can then provide energy for lighting, air conditioning and appliances whilst leaving sufficient battery range for driving the next day, or power the home in an emergency or grid outage scenario.

The Energy Home was designed by Nissan’s own team to reflect Japanese aesthetics, modernity, and many of the styling cues and materials as used in Nissan’s latest concept cars, similarly in philosophy to the Renault Symbioz car-home concept seen last year - although unlike the Symbioz, the Leaf does not actually live inside its house. The Home highlights the Nissan Energy strategy now launched in the US, Japan and Europe, which is launching bi-directional vehicle-to-grid (V2G) programmes and exploring second-life battery solutions such as their recycling and refurbishment for use in static applications, or to power construction equipment, lighting and generators.

Initiatives are underway at Nissan’s global locations including the use of Leaf cars to assist in powering the Nissan North America HQ in Franklin, Tennessee, at times of peak electrical demand to save money; field-testing of energy management and V2G in Japan; and acting as a grid reserve in a pilot project in Hagen, Germany. Nissan aims to commercialise its Energy Share solutions, connecting vehicles with infrastructure, for applications including vehicle-to-home, vehicle-to-building and vehicle-to-grid, and is trialling ways in which EV owners can sell surplus energy from their vehicles.