And the German giant appears to be so impressed with the concept that the prototype of its charging robot looks nearly identical to its proof-of-concept, with the addition of blinking digital eyes and R2-D2 noise.
The robot is one of the futuristic shipping concepts that Volkswagen hopes to expand its shipping infrastructure over the next few years.
The function of the robot is to fully self-charge the vehicles in the parking spaces, and it works completely autonomously, and heads independently to the car to be charged.
The entire charging process takes place without any human intervention, from opening the charging socket cover to plugging in and disconnecting the plug.
To charge several vehicles at the same time, the mobile robot transfers the mobile energy storage unit to the vehicle, and then connects it, and uses this energy storage unit to charge the car, and repeats the process to charge other vehicles.
After the vehicle is fully charged, the robot independently collects the mobile energy storage unit and returns it to the central charging station.
“The ubiquitous charging infrastructure is a key factor in the success of electric mobility,” says Thomas Schmall, chief executive of Volkswagen Group Components. The charging robot is one of many ways, but it is undoubtedly one of the most innovative.
Creating an efficient future shipping infrastructure is a central task that challenges the entire sector, and Volkswagen is developing solutions to help avoid costly autonomous actions.
A portable charging robot and flexible fast charging station are just two of Volkswagen’s different solutions.
Volkswagen is experimenting with a different idea in parts of China and in its home town of Wolfsburg, Germany, which involves placing batteries inside what looks like a more standard charging station column.
This allows the charging station to build an energy store that can be used to quickly charge electric cars, even if the local network is not able to distribute that much electricity in one go.
Volkswagen said it plans to launch more so-called flexible fast-charging stations in early 2021.