Although it’s uncertain whether the Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX will go into production or remain a concept, German automakers have confirmed that solar roof technology is available, revealed the news story in Auto Blog.
Mercedes-Benz Chief Technology Officer Marcus Schaefer said during a car presentation that owners of future EV cars will have access to solar roof options to assist expand the range.
Schäfer said, “So, customers probably will have the choice in the future to opt for complete glass roofs uninterrupted, or solar roofs, which are extremely aesthetically attractive, but also the benefit of putting additional energy into the battery,”.
The Vision EQXX’s solar roof, according to Mercedes-Benz, may add up to 15.5 miles (25 kilometers) of range each day. The solar system is also unique in that the energy generated by the cells is stored in a lithium-iron-phosphate battery that powers the climate blower, infotainment, lights, and other systems. This relieves stress on the high-voltage battery system while also increasing its range.
Mercedes’ plan for using solar panels on the top isn’t what you may expect right away, either. Power from the 117 solar cells on Vision EQXX’s roof is fed to and stored in a separate lithium-iron-phosphate battery rather than being fed directly into the large lithium-ion battery pack. The temperature blower, lighting, infotainment system, and other ancillaries are all powered by this battery. You can increase range by reducing the demand on the high-voltage system by using this separate battery to power those systems. Mercedes, on the other hand, claims to be working on a solar power system capable of feeding the high-voltage system.
We don’t know how much range a production Mercedes EV will be able to get from the sun, but we expect it will be less than the 15.5 miles of the VIsion EQXX. After all, a 0.17 Cd will not be found in every new Mercedes-Benz EV.
And, because this is a Mercedes-Benz, Schäfer remarked multiple times that the solar roofs would be attractive. We’re excited to see how the production roofs look and what they have to offer in terms of range.
The Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and European-spec Hyundai Ioniq 5 models are among the few vehicles on the market with solar roofs.
A number of other Vision EQXX technologies are expected to enter production. The upgraded 900-volt battery pack, which has the same 100 kWh capacity as the battery in the EQS 450+ but is 50% smaller and 30% lighter, could be one of them.