Mercedes develops app to minimise e-car range anxiety

One main reason why drivers consider to not purchase an electric vehicle is range anxiety – the fear of running out of battery. Mercedes-Benz has developed an app to overcome this 'low battery concern' virtually.

The new Mercedes EQ Ready app helps motorists decide whether it makes sense for them personally to switch to an electric car or hybrid – image courtesy of Mercedes

Mercedes-Benz has developed an app, EQ ready, that helps motorists decide whether it makes sense for them personally to switch to an electric car or hybrid.

The smartphone app can record the data of real journeys made by the user, analyse his or her everyday mobility behaviour and compare the data with numerous parameters of electric and hybrid vehicles.

This makes it possible to try out e-mobility in a virtual yet realistic way, by recording the journeys made by the user in their car (of any brand). The app generates a realistic usage profile that is significantly more meaningful than a once-only test drive.

The tracking feature records not only speed and acceleration but also stops or longer breaks, as well as ambient parameters such as the altitude profile. This makes it possible to calculate the range and energy consumption.

To optimise their virtual e-driving experience, app users can then manually enter potential charging stations, such as at home or at their place of work. In the future, the app will be extended to include publicly available charging stations.

The personal mobility behaviour determined in this way is transmitted by WiFi or mobile data to the Mercedes me server, where the relevant parameters of Mercedes-Benz and smart electric cars and hybrids are stored.

Also, in the case of a hybrid, the evaluation of mobility behaviour focuses exclusively on all-electric mode. Privacy is a key aspect of the app. To stop a journey being recorded, the user can disable the tracking feature at any time. The app also regularly reminds the user that data are being recorded.