02.2023 - 01.2026

Bid-E-V | Bidirectional Electric Vans

The Bid-E-V project aims to promote the electrification of vehicle fleets in the logistics sector with the help of bidirectional electric vans. The aim is to demonstrate the practicability of bidirectional charging through a field test thereby reducing energy and operating costs through renewable energies and energy management services.


The German government’s Climate Action Plan 2050 aims to reduce transport-related CO2 emissions by 42 % by 2030 [1]. Contrary to the incentives provided by subsidies, the electrification rate of minibuses and vans used in trade and logistics for “last mile services” is still manageable compared to other mobility sectors. Due to their current prevalence and increasing numbers, these vehicles have great potential for reducing CO2 emissions and using renewable energies. In contrast, the adoption of electric mobility in this sector requires economically lucrative and flexible use, as is the case with current petrol and diesel vehicles. Due to high investments in electric vehicles and suitable charging and control infrastructure, logistics companies are therefore reluctant to switch to the environmentally friendly alternative. The investment costs could be reduced by adapting the capacity utilization planning of charging infrastructure, using cheap renewable electricity and making the flexibility potential of electric vehicles available for energy industry applications. A bidirectional connection of electric vehicles and charging infrastructure to the power grid requires innovations from car manufacturers, bidirectionally compatible charging stations and the involvement of grid operators.

The Bid-E-V project enables a previously missing consideration of the electrical transformation in the logistics sector through bidirectional electric vans.

The connection of commercial charging parks can thus make a significant contribution to maintaining system and grid security with full grid and market integration of the charging infrastructure. Consequently, electric mobility in the logistics sector also contributes to a successful energy transition.

Objective – Overall Project

The feasibility of unidirectional and bidirectional charging in a commercial context is being demonstrated in the Bid-E-V project through a field test with unidirectional and bidirectional electric vans at a commercial space. The components required for the field test (vehicles, charging systems, charging management system) are being developed in a professionally broad-based consortium, thus enablingthe integration of the vehicles into the grid and market.

The energy and operating costs of the vehicles are to be reduced through the use of renewable energies and through revenues from energy-related services, so-called use cases. The aim is to harmonize fluctuating electricity generation from wind and photovoltaics with the charging requirements of commercial electric vehicle fleets. Taking logistics processes and the resulting mobility requirements into account, business models for the provision of flexibility are being investigated and evaluated, e.g., the provision of flexibility for market-based redispatch.

Grid operators can increase load management potential by intelligently connecting electric vehicles to the power grid, in particular through bidirectional charging and temporary energy storage in the vehicle batteries. The results of the modeling of grid and energy system feedback effects will be used by grid operators to safely integrate commercial electric mobility into the grid (grid management, grid operation and grid planning).

The strong focus on application is intended to transfer the research results into practice and promote the expansion of commercial electric mobility through demonstration in the field. The Bid-E-V project will support the marketability of bidirectional electric vans and the necessary charging and control components in order to accelerate the ramp-up of commercial electric mobility. The results will be systematically processed and serve as a blueprint for logistics companies when switching to electric vehicles.

Project Structure

The project is divided into 14 interdisciplinary work packages.

Through technical and scientific analyses by the project partners, further developments in the technologies vehicle, charging system with bidirectional charging function as well as load and charging management are carried out simultaneously. Synchronous prototype construction of hardware components and realization of the aggregation and flex trading software for real-time operation lead to the corresponding field test. The complete grid integration of the assembled components takes place in the real laboratory and leads to the final research environment. The continuous measurement data acquisition of various components under real conditions is used for further optimization measures.

At the same time, research partners accompany the implementing project participants over the entire period with analyses in the following areas: Grid repercussions, grid stability and flexibility as well as actor landscape and user behavior.

The final scientific synthesis of the project results is to be translated into a “how-to” guide for the electrification of commercial fleets in the logistics sector.

Figure 1: Organization of the project structure

The FfE’s Project Contents

Together with IEH, FfE is responsible for the research part of the project. This means that its activities are primarily focused on the accompanying research work packages in order to answer the project’s key research questions.

The overarching goal of the project is to investigate the overall impact of electrification in the logistics sector and to reduce the existing implementation challenges. FfE is evaluating the primary goal of the electrification of logistics fleets from a holistic energy-economic perspective. This essentially includes energy-economic and technical analyses of the distribution and transmission grid, markets and emissions for various scenarios and use cases.

Implemented through field-tested, holistically developed solutions. In addition to the original problem solving, this also includes the evaluation of new possibilities offered by electromobility. FfE has also set itself the goal of investigating the possibilities for reducing the total cost of ownership (TCO).

The FfE ensures a standardized project methodology. In doing so, it assumes an important interface function for the exchange with other research institutes and projects as well as the transfer of knowledge and project results into practice. In a leading role in the synthesis and dissemination of results, FfE ensures a concentrated utilization of the findings in order to derive valid and generally applicable recommendations for the electrification of large logistics fleets.

System landscape

Various players from the fields of vehicle and charging system manufacturers, charging management development and the energy industry are represented in the Bid-E-V project.

Figure 2: System environment in Bid-E-V

The successful grid integration of bidirectional electric vans is being implemented by the project partners at a real logistics site. This includes a  The expansion to bidirectional charging stations will take place as part of the implementation through the development of a prototype. The project will map the entire energy value chain for charging unidirectional and bidirectional electric vans and demonstrate the interoperability of systems and IT systems for secure grid integration. Market-side integration of the electric fleet is made possible by creating a special bidirectional load and charging management system with flex trading in real time. Electric vans enhanced with measurement technology record movement profiles as well as charging and plug-in behavior and provide conclusions about potential use cases. There is the possibility of providing system services. Market-side integration of the vehicles via a virtual power plant enables a reduction in charging costs through electricity price-optimized charging and thus a reduction in overall vehicle costs. Grid-side marketing of flexibility for redispatch services completes the implementation. Grid integration helps the grid operators to derive findings with regard to flexibility in the electricity grid.

Repercussions on the distribution grid and the comprehensive energy system are analyzed in the project and recorded in the context of energy technology specifications and use cases. The DA/RE connection also enables data exchange and integration into future redispatch processes.

Project Partners

Eight partners are involved in the Bid-E-V project. The consortium combines expertise from the fields of vehicle, charging system and charging management development as well as the energy industry from a scientific and industrial perspective.

Under the leadership of the consortium leader Mercedes Benz AG, the project consists of the industrial partner Consolinno Energy GmbH and the research partners Institute for Energy Transmission and High Voltage Technology at the University of Stuttgart and the Forschungsstelle für Energiewirtschaft e.V..

The consortium is complemented by the associated partners from the energy supply sector: Stadtwerke Sindelfingen and TransnetBW as well as COBIS GmbH & Co. KG, which provides its Energy Efficiency Park for the field test.


The research project is funded by Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK) (Funding Code: 01MV22013B ).


[1] Klimaschutzplan 2050 – Klimaschutzpolitische Grundsätze und Ziele der Bundesregierung. Berlin: Bundesministerium für Umwelt, Naturschutz und nukleare Sicherheit, 2016.