Health Check

Annual Report
2020 - 2021

Evaluating the Drive Batteries in Electric Cars →→→ The rate of new registrations of electric vehicles is soaring. In parallel, this is creating an emerging market for used electric cars. When estimating the value of these used electric cars, one question stands out more than all the others: What is the condition of the drive battery? With one of DEKRA’s innovations, this can be confirmed quickly and reliably.

VEHICLE INSPECTION

STATE OF HEALTH

BATTERY CAPACITY

The value of used electric vehicles is largely determined by the “health” of the drive battery, known as its state of health (SoH). Sellers and buyers alike have an interest in knowing this number, which shows the relationship between the remaining battery capacity and its original capacity as a percentage. At any rate, until recently, there was no method for checking this SoH quickly and reliably.

“When assessing used cars, there isn’t time for time-consuming laboratory tests,” says Christoph Mennicken, Vice President of the Claims & Expertise Service Division. “It has to be quick.” With this goal in mind, DEKRA’s Vehicle Inspection and Claims & Expertise Service Divisions worked together closely. Together with the FKFS research institute, they developed a new method. “Our solution has also been evaluated and certified by the Institute for Power Electronics and Electrical Drives (ISEA) at the renowned RWTH university in Aachen,” reports R&D Manager Andreas Richter.

The operating principle behind the solution is this: High demands are made on the battery by briefly accelerating the vehicle. The relevant output data is read out and evaluated with a special device, via an interface. The SoH is then determined from the load data, taking into account the environmental data.

Determining the SoH requires a range of data and some preliminary investigations. So far, data on around a dozen types of vehicle from different brands has been stored, and this number is increasing.

“The number of vehicles covered is currently being expanded in accordance with market demand,” says Project Manager Kim von Grabe.

When assessing used cars, there isn’t time for time-consuming laboratory tests on the drive batteries. Our test only takes ten minutes and has to provide reliable results.

After a pilot phase with two electric vehicle models in Germany, Portugal, and Sweden, the DEKRA product has now been in live operation with its first customer in Germany since the beginning of 2021. A leasing business has incorporated the solution into how it assesses returned vehicles.

Growing Database

Calculating the State of Health of a drive battery requires a database with reference data. When the DEKRA solution first came into use at the beginning of 2021, models from seven manufacturers were already available: Citroen, Hyundai, Kia, Mitsubishi, Peugeot, Renault, Smart.

Click here for Service Division Vehicle Inspection

learn more

ONLY TEN MINUTES

»When assessing used cars, there isn’t time for time-consuming laboratory tests on the drive batteries. Our test only takes ten minutes and has to provide reliable results.«
Christoph Nolte
[Executive Vice President, Vehicle Inspection Service Division]

Providing support in times of disaster

Next Insight

Next Insight