For electric vehicles to successfully replace those using more conventional internal combustion engine, charging needs to be easy and widely available. EV Safe Charge Inc. today unveiled its ZiGGY mobile charging robot.
The Los Angeles-based company said ZiGGY will bring electric vehicle (EV) charging to parking facilities, shopping and entertainment centers, hotels, fleet operators, and property owners. The system is intended to avoid the limitations of stationary EV chargers and costly electrical infrastructure, it said. In addition, ZiGGY’s digital ad server can generate advertising revenue for the facility and display customized information.
“Strong EV sales and emissions-reduction goals are creating a more sustainable future, but EV charging infrastructure isn’t keeping up,” said Caradoc Ehrenhalt, founder and CEO of EV Safe Charge and ZiGGY’s inventor.
“ZiGGY is a flexible and simple solution for virtually any office, mall, or apartment complex to help meet growing charging needs of its tenants and guests without expensive, time-consuming infrastructure and installation investment, if it’s even possible,” he added. “In many cases, especially in older buildings, adding EV chargers isn’t an option until now.”
How ZiGGY works
Users will be able to summon ZiGGY via a mobile app or an in-vehicle infotainment system, said EV Safe Charge. The mobile robot will then arrive at the vehicle’s parking space, ready to reserve the spot for plug-in charging. ZiGGY is able to return to its home base for recharging from the electrical grid, a battery, solar energy, or any combination of them.
If no infrastructure is available, ZiGGY can also be chosen for offsite charging, according to EV Safe Charge. The company will lease ZiGGY to deliver “Charging as a Service” to facilities and provide ongoing technical support and maintenance.
Facility operators will have the option to direct vehicle owners to the app for payment or to provide charging as an amenity. Parking operators will no longer need to block spaces for permanent EV chargers because ZiGGY can serve all parking spaces, said EV Safe Charge.
ZiGGY is equipped with two large screens that serve as informational kiosks or interactive advertising displays—an additional income generator for parking facility operators. EV Safe Charge said it will be the first company to bring to market a mobile EV charging system featuring digital communications.
“We created ZiGGY in response to growing demand for flexible EV charging solutions from our customers and to help support the global transition to a cleaner, greener, all-electric mobility future,” Ehrenhalt said. “By helping drivers to overcome charging anxiety, one of the barriers to mass EV adoption, ZiGGY is enhancing the EV charging experience for everyone.”
EV Safe Charge works with Box Clever on design
EV Safe Charge said it wanted “an exciting, modern, welcoming design” for ZiGGY. It engaged Box Clever, an award-winning industrial design studio. The Box Clever team worked on the design of ZiGGY’s exterior, while also creating a holistic design experience including the user experience (UX) and brand identity for ZiGGY.
“Through our work on the design and branding of ZiGGY, we are delighted to be contributing to a transformative innovation that will help advance a clean energy future,” said Bret Recor, founder and creative director of Box Clever. “We are excited to continue our design work with ZiGGY on this shared mission.”
EV Safe Charge claimed that it created the first comprehensive mobile rental charging system for the launch of the Jaguar I-PACE. The company said it is meeting the mobile charging needs of major OEMs, as well as venues needing temporary charging.
EV Safe Charge clients include Audi, Hertz, Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Porsche, Stellantis, and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. A BRITE Energy Innovators portfolio company, EV Safe Charge said its technologies meet the needs of automakers, real estate developers, car dealerships, hotels, municipalities, and other entities.
ZiGGY robot charger at its base in a parking garage. Source: EV Safe Charge
Users, investors anticipate mobile EV charging
ZiGGY is currently scheduled to enter production in 2023. EV Safe Charge is taking reservations for ZiGGY today.
“We delight in finding opportunities to introduce our guests and neighbors to next-level amenities and technology,” said David Lemmond, general manager of The William Vale. “ZiGGY is perfect for the growing demand for easier charging solutions. ZiGGY will introduce our entire community to just how convenient charging your EV really can be without substantial infrastructure updates.”
Angel investors including Sand Hill Angels have funded EV Safe Charge. The company is raising additional capital in a seed round to finance the production and marketing of ZiGGY.
Capstone Financial Group, a leading international investment bank in the automotive/mobility space, is conducting a competitive bidding process for the purchase of a minority interest in EV Safe Charge. It said it expects prospective bidders to be institutional investors who have expressed to Capstone an interest in the EV industry.
“We are thrilled to introduce the investment world to ZiGGY and feel it will be well-received by the market as it represents a cost-effective alternative that simplifies the EV charging infrastructure,” said Carl Norman, president of Capstone Financial Group. “ZiGGY was invented and developed by leading experts in EV charging, robotics, industrial design and engineering.”
“We look forward to ZiGGY moving into production and to partnering with parking operators, office and residential landlords, hotels, event venues and more to support the future of flexible charging needs,” he said.
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