The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by electric vehicle (EV) market growth, emission reduction targets, government policies and incentives and growing importance of technologies such as smart charging systems, battery energy storage systems (BESS), charging connectors and cables. In the last three years alone, there have been over 1.7 million patents filed and granted in the automotive industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Electric vehicles in automotive: LEV chargingBuy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over one million patents to analyze innovation intensity for the automotive industry, there are 300+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

LEV charging is a key innovation area in electric vehicles

Light electric vehicle (LEV) charging refers to the process of charging the batteries of light electric vehicles, such as electric motorcycles, e-bicycles, and scooters. This involves connecting the vehicle to a power supply unit, often through a charging port, to replenish the energy consumed during operation. LEV charging can be performed using various techniques and technologies, including fast charging, wireless charging, and smart charging systems.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 30+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of LEV charging.

Key players in LEV charging – a disruptive innovation in the automotive industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.   

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.  

Patent volumes related to LEV charging

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Immsi 5 Unlock Company Profile
Lyft 4 Unlock Company Profile
Alps Alpine 2 Unlock Company Profile
Harley-Davidson 6 Unlock Company Profile
Mercedes-Benz Group 1 Unlock Company Profile
HL Mando 2 Unlock Company Profile
Decathlon 8 Unlock Company Profile
Toyota Motor 4 Unlock Company Profile
Amer Sports 5 Unlock Company Profile
Robert Bosch Stiftung 8 Unlock Company Profile
Shimano 51 Unlock Company Profile
Hyundai Motor 4 Unlock Company Profile
Iron Mountain 4 Unlock Company Profile
Yamaha Motor 20 Unlock Company Profile
CEA 6 Unlock Company Profile
Fallbrook Engineering 10 Unlock Company Profile
Honda Motor 25 Unlock Company Profile
Panasonic 5 Unlock Company Profile
Daido Metal 16 Unlock Company Profile
General Motors 5 Unlock Company Profile
Bose 3 Unlock Company Profile
Takano 4 Unlock Company Profile
Kia 3 Unlock Company Profile
Ford Motor 68 Unlock Company Profile
Kawasaki Heavy Industries 24 Unlock Company Profile
Uber Technologies 2 Unlock Company Profile
SRAM 6 Unlock Company Profile
TVS Group 1 Unlock Company Profile
Neutron 9 Unlock Company Profile
UJET 5 Unlock Company Profile
Neuron Mobility 17 Unlock Company Profile
VanMoof 1 Unlock Company Profile
Campagnolo 4 Unlock Company Profile
Xiaomi 4 Unlock Company Profile
Omron Tateisi Electronics 5 Unlock Company Profile
Kawasaki Jukogyo Kabushiki Kaisha 9 Unlock Company Profile
Tritan Technology 1 Unlock Company Profile
Ninebot Beijing Tech 6 Unlock Company Profile
The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission 6 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Ford Motor is the leading patent filer in LEV charging. Ford is continually working to improve fast-charging capabilities. This includes advancements in battery technology and vehicle design to support faster charging speeds, reducing the time required for recharging. Ford’s vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology allows electric vehicles to not only consume energy from the grid but also feed energy back into it. This innovation can contribute to grid stability during peak demand periods. Shimano and Honda Motors are some of the other key patent filers in this space.

In terms of application diversity, Ninebot Beijing Tech leads the pack, while Campagnolo and Harley-Davidson stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, Ford Motor held the top position, followed by Neuron Mobility and Decathlon.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the automotive industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Electric Vehicles (EV).

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.