Having been presented to the world in late 2017, the BMW Wireless Charging is now officially available for purchase in selected markets. This makes the Munich-based carmaker to offer the world’s first factory-fitted wireless charging technology for electrified vehicles.
BMW Wireless Charging uses an Inductive Charging Station (GroundPad) installed on the ground and a secondary vehicle component (CarPad) fixed to the underside of the vehicle. The contactless charging works similarly to a wireless charging tray that is widely available for mobile phones where the GroundPad generates a magnetic field and electric current is induced in the CarPad which then charges the battery pack.
With a charging power of 3.2 kW, the system can fully charge a 530e iPerformance in around 3.5 hours from empty. At the moment, BMW is only offering this Wireless Charging function for the plug-in hybrid 5 series.
To activate the wireless charging, all the driver has to do is line up the 530e according to the parking guidance on the Control Display into the optimum position. Once the car is lined up, a simple push of the Start/Stop button will initiate the charging process. The system automatically switches off once the battery is fully charged.
The GroundPad can be installed both indoors and outdoors, where it may be used regardless of weather conditions. Rain, snow and even driving over the GroundPad will not damage the component in any way. During charging the GroundPad is permanently monitored to only induct electricity with the CarPad, should any foreign matters be detected, the electric current will be immediately switched off.
Plug-in hybrids account for over 50 percent of BMW Group Malaysia’s vehicle deliveries, offering the most comprehensive PHEV line up in Malaysia consisting of the 330e, 530e, 740Le and the X5 xDrive40e. It remains to be seen whether the company will offer this convenient feature for its Malaysian customers.