AAA to test mobile electric vehicle charging

Details still sketchy, but first units will be deployed this summer.
Written by Heather Clancy, Contributor

(Updated June 23, 2011 to correct reference to Plug-in 2011 conference.)

I have a lot of familiarity with the road crews that AAA sends out when your vehicle breaks down. We have had four visits this year alone, fortunately NOT for my personal car. So, did you ever wonder what would happen if someone forgot to charge their electric vehicle and drove beyond their acceptable range? Not exactly like changing a flat tire or jump starting a battery, is it?

Enter good old AAA. The motor club is planning to start testing mobile charging units for electric vehicles within the next month.

AAA plans to provide more details about the project during the big Plug-in 2011 show in mid-July in North Carolina. But the crux of the matter is that it plans to start deploying the technology in major cities around the United States later this year. Although AAA doesn't say it in its press release, the first state to get the charging technology will be Florida.

Said John Nielsen, AAA's national director of auto repair, buying services and consumer information:

"AAA is proud to announce today to the membership of the EDTA that it is the first in the nation to have a full production level two and level three mobile charging unit that will be unveiled next month and deployed into the field to begin servicing AAA members later this summer."

AAA doesn't say which technology it plans to use, but I did a little poking around and discovered that Delphi is already selling portable electric vehicle charging technology, like the unit pictured here.

Leviton has also released a portable charger that supports Level 1 sorts of charging activities.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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