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Monday, July 14, 2014

BMW and Mercedes Join Forces on Wireless Car Charging


Normally we’d have news of a no-holds-barred Mercedes performance coupe, set to take the fight to the BMW M4, or something along those lines. But that’s not the case today, because apparently when the Germans aren’t one-upping each other in every segment, they’re joining force.
BMW and Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes, have launched a development and cost-sharing partnership to revolutionize the way that electric vehicles recharge.

 The system — which both automakers hope becomes the standard in the future — will allow drivers to park over a wireless charging platform, get out, and walk away without ever having to plug their vehicle into a wall socket.

In concept, it’s simple enough. Underneath each EV will be a pair of coils, which when lined up with a charging platform on the ground, generate an electromagnetic field to transmit power wirelessly.

Surprisingly it won’t take half a week to fill up the battery either. The charging rate is initially 3.6kW, but could scale up to a much higher 7kW, with more than 90 percent energy efficiency targeted.

And using the system should be fairly straightforward as well. Each car will show positioning cues to help the driver line up the coils with the charger and will send charging information and updates straight to your mobile device.


And don’t worry. If Fluffy or any of your other feline housemates come between the charger and the coils, the system detects the foreign object and shuts off.

 No word yet on pricing or when the technology will hit the road.