Charging infrastructure concept for Rosier car dealership

Preparing 17 locations for the challenges of electric mobility: This is the task currently faced by car dealership chain Rosier from Menden in North-Rhine Westphalia, Germany. Sales staff and workshop employees are receiving special training on the specifics of electric cars and the charging infrastructure also has to be set up in all 17 locations.

Rosier's biggest concern was how the many different requirements of the brands it sells - including Mercedes-Benz, Smart, Volkswagen, Audi and Peugeot - could be optimally combined in one unified concept. This was accompanied by requests from the company management, who wanted to give employees the option of charging their own electric cars at their place of work.

Naturally, another concern was being able to utilise the existing grid connection cost-effectively and to keep running costs low – expanding the power grid connection would be both laborious and expensive. A team of four employees from charging experts The Mobility House (TMH) developed a solution that was both affordable and easy to implement. This solution is already being installed at the first nine Rosier dealerships.

"Optimising the wide variety of requirements was the biggest challenge of this project," says Veronica Brandmeier, project manager at TMH. "We drew up blueprints for the dealerships based on three representative locations, reducing the requirements of the various brands to one common denominator. We also took into account the future projections and expected sales of Rosier, and incorporated our scaling plan for the future development of electric mobility."

At many locations, the grid environment would have quickly reached its limits due to the additional load caused by the charging stations without load management. TMH's analysis, however, showed that with their intelligent charging and energy management system, the requirements of car manufacturers would be easily met until at least 2025.

Rosier's main location in Menden, for example, where there were already three charging stations, will now be expanded to ten charging stations. By 2025, the system can be gradually expanded to up to 48 charging stations in line with the expected growth of the electric car market, in order to be able to supply test-drive vehicles, employees' cars and customer vehicles with electricity while they visit the workshop. This takes into account the fact that employee vehicles are usually charged during the day, but demonstration vehicles are charged mostly at night. 46 charging stations are equipped for charging with up to 11 kW, and two for quicker charging with up to 22 kW. Rosier has no need for quick-charging with 50 kW or more as the electric cars are typically plugged in for several hours.

The various user groups identify themselves using RFID cards at the charging stations to start the charging process. This way, the company is able to distinguish between employees, customers and demonstration vehicles in its accounting. Initially, all the stations will be located on the private property of the car dealership. However, in future it would be possible to expand the system with publicly accessible charging points for all electric car drivers. In this case, Rosier would benefit from generous subsidies: In North-Rhine Westphalia, where the company has multiple locations, 50 percent of eligible costs can be subsidised by a maximum amount of 5,000 euros per charging station.

The manufacturer-independent software and hardware of TMH's charging and energy management system is already prepared for the breakthrough of electric mobility and offers almost unlimited potential for expansion.

"That's why we advise our customers to set aside areas for electric car charging on their company premises for the future, for which the cable ducts and sub-distribution can already be prepared today. This significantly minimises the cost of future building work. Little by little, these 'islands' can grow with demand and easily be expanded with additional charging stations," says Brandmeier.

The limiting factor for the number of charging stations is the power supply to the site. "The customer could of course expand their connection to the grid operator, which is very expensive and time-consuming," says Brandmeier. "We can avoid that with our software. In most cases, there is sufficient power available and only a few electrical loads, such as welding machines in the workshop, require a lot of power when used," explains the charging expert. "Our charging and energy management system ensures that the power supply to the charging stations is automatically reduced in real time when the welding machine is in use, which is usually only a few minutes at a time." It is not necessary to consider expensive grid expansion works to compensate these temporary peak loads.

The system will continue to be supported and monitored by TMH. In case of any problems, the technology company can access the system and respond in real time. The customer also has a full overview of the functions of the charging fleet at all times: They can read all the statistics and data as well as manage loads and can change the priority of the charging connections, for example. Most of all, they can enjoy the feeling of being optimally prepared for the future of mobility.

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