When we published our Hive EV Charging review earlier this year, Spencer Hart wrote that, "It's not an understatement to say that it's completely changed how I view electric vehicles, as it's now so easy to recharge them and even more convenient than going to get petrol in an ICE car." And a new addition to the Hive app makes it even more attractive.
The new Hive EV Charging tariff, Hive SmartCharge Saver, is currently being trialled by 100 customers. It promises to make your EV charging cheaper than ever by giving you discounts on your energy prices. That's handy at any time, but with the looming cost of living crisis it could be an even bigger deal for EV drivers.
How Hive promises to make EV charging cheaper
The new Hive SmartCharge Saver feature works by using intelligent scheduling to charge your EV at the cheapest and greenest time of the day. All you need to do is to tell your Hive app when you need the vehicle to be ready for and it'll take care of the scheduling.
The tariff is backed by British Gas, and you'll get a discount of 2p per kWH if your EV is plugged in continuously for six hours, rising to 7p per kWH if you keep it connected for longer. The maximum saving at current prices is £2.10 per charge on a 30kWH battery and £4.20 per charge on a 60kWH battery.
So what does Hive mean by the "greenest" time of day? SmartCharge is designed to schedule your charging for when the grid is at its least busy. That's when more of its energy is generated from renewable sources such as wind or solar; during periods of busier demand it's all hands on deck to produce energy from whatever sources are available, particularly fossil fuels. By automatically scheduling EV charging to avoid those periods it helps reduce the carbon footprint of charging your vehicle.
I think this is really interesting; while an electric car is way beyond my means for the foreseeable future, it's in all our interests to have the greenest possible infrastructure for electric vehicles – and with Hive planning to include solar panels and "virtual power plants that link you up with other electric car owners", it'll be fascinating to see what other innovations we'll see in the electric vehicle space in the next few years.
You can find out more about Hive's EV tariffs at hivehome.com.