The project "ee-tour allgäu“ was funded by the ministry of economics of the Federal Republic of Germany and the private partners in this collaborative research project. Funding was granted in the contest “ICT for electro-mobility” together with 6 more model regions. The project sets out for supplying a non-urban region with electric cars for the first time. No previous results were available.
Core topics of the project were technical challenges (installation of electric charging stations, intelligent and user friendly fleet management and appropriate propulsion and battery technologies), as well as information and communication technologies particularly designed for electric vehicles in form of car-PCs.
Apart from the technical solutions, sustainable business models associated tariffing and invoicing systems were developed and tested. For experiencing the possibilities of actually using electric vehicles, since mid 2010 more than 50 different vehicles were made available to tourists and locals at various rental points across the Allgau region in Bavaria.
Moreover, the deployment options of electric vehicles in daily business are tested with company fleets (e.g. with the Allgau Energy Supplier AUW) and possibly with social services.
A fleet of about 50 e-cars was purchased, which was composed out of more than10 different models which were available on the market at the time of the project. With these vehicles the project introduced e-mobility to various users (i.e. tourists, natives, agriculture etc.) investigating applicability to users objectives focusing also on technical issues under the particular topographic and climatic situation in the Allgäu throughout the seasons.
The Allgäu is Germany’s most visited touristic destination. It tries to comply to many a tourist’s mobility need, especially as points of interests are quite equally spread over its territory. On the other hand the traditional traffic with combustion vehicles reduces the quality of the environment in the main locations and also outdoors. The consortium therefore demonstrated that a sustainable mobility is also requested in a rural environment, and even more, it’s doable. Sustainable, of course, if the supplied energy is made of renewable sources as it is quite common in this region. The tourists successfully tried out e-mobility while spending their vacation and take the message home: We did it there, let’s do it here too.
All vehicles were upgraded with an ICT-module and smart phones. Developing a set of driving assistance systems helped to compensate for relatively short drive ranges. Data from GPS, the battery, the vehicle and the driver were taken. The navigation data for this purpose was enriched with additional information of altitudes.
All data was broadcasted via GPRS into a “tower” and information will be resent back into the car to exchange all relevant information for the car’s passengers.
The battery systems of these e-cars are quite unknown in their specifications and quality. In the project testing of the batteries focuses on durability and aging, however, also the specifications of the battery and other components of the power supply system are of interest.
It could be shown, that the car to tower communication works and can be a support to the e-car driver, the business operator and the touristic entities. The developed solution is good from an engineer’s stand point, however a low cost version should be developed in a next step. The business models investigated would not be able to compensate for high procurement costs for today’s e-cars and batteries. The batteries are still to be improved in terms of cycle times.
A final publishable report of the project is not available. Main results in form of user reports, technology results and media clippings can be accessed through the project website (in German only):