BMW is set to introduce a floor pad that will wirelessly charge its 530e iPerformance.
The base pad can be installed inside of a garage or even outside, and it plugs into a 220-volt outlet. When approaching the pad, the 530e's sensors and internal screen will navigate the driver to the necessary point above the charging pad. Once in position, the pad's integrated coil, alongside a secondary coil found inside the car, generate an alternating magnetic field that will charge the car's 9.4kWh battery in 3.5 hours with 3.2kW of power. The entire process can even be monitored via an app.
BMW plans to debut the charging system next year, though the U.S. and Canada will have to wait a bit longer than other countries. Speaking to The Verge, a BMW North America representative explained that the wireless charging pad is still in the testing phase in those two countries; and once testing is completed, it will still need approval from UL — a company that provides further testing, inspection, and certification.
Furthermore, only the 530e will get wireless charging capabilities when the floor pad releases. Other vehicles like the X5, i3, and i8 are set to have similar compatible technology in the future.