According to a Ford patent filing, electric cars may be recharged by towing them behind another car.
A Ford patent application, first reported by The Drive on Wednesday, suggests it could be done with anything from a larger utility car to another passenger car.
Regenerative braking allows cars to be loaded at any moment when towing, braking, or lowering the towing car, putting less burden on the towing car engine, depending on the application. Ford submitted the application in December 2020 and received approval in July of that year.
Ford also proposed a street train scenario in which moving cars communicate via Bluetooth or the Internet. An electric car would be towed by a larger car in an alternative (most likely) scenario, with the driver of that car directing the load.
It appears to be similar to the way automobiles are towed behind RVs. An electric car, similar to towing a mobile home, can be linked with a larger car and loaded with all four or only two wheels on the ground, depending on the application.
It also appears to be a means to maybe improve the RV’s efficiency. A towed electric car may be utilized to push the RV uphill and recuperate energy on the way down, though this is not specified in the patent application. That, however, would necessitate some fairly complex restrictions.
It is not known whether Ford intends to prepare the cargo while it is being towed. After all, all too often automakers file patent applications without a clear use plan. However, this could be the next step in the Pro Power Onboard system in the Ford F-150 PowerBoost Hybrid 2021 and the all-electric Ford F-150 Lightning 2022, which uses the battery to power tools and electronics, or in the Lightning. Housing, offers backup power in the event of a fault.