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- Location: Northwood, Middlesex
Wireless charging for your iPhone? Sorry, Apple — that's kind of old hat.
In a new blog post, BMW just reminded us beyond all doubt that we're living in the future by announcing a gigantic wireless charging pad for its electric cars. If you’ve got a BMW to go along with it, you can pick it up sometime in 2018.
Specifically, you’ll need to have a BMW 530e iPerformance as it’s the only car that’ll support it at first. After that, BMW will extend support for other iPerformance models that support the optional wireless charging kit, such as the 330e, the 740e, and the X5. The 530e is remarkable, though, for having the technology already built in and ready to go.
Oh, and there’s another catch. As The Verge reports, it won’t be available in the US and Canada at first, but you might be okay if you're in "other countries."
This is a cool idea, but it’s not without a few hiccups. The convenience factor looks like it’s a little outweighed by the need to watch guides on the iDrive video screen while driving over the plate in order to achieve the best alignment for the maximum charge.
In other words, don’t toss out the cash for the pad thinking you can just casually drive your car into your garage as you can with a regular gas-powered vehicle (or even with a cable-charged electric one).
Get everything lined up properly, though, and you can get it a full charge in 3.5 hours. That’s about how long it already takes the 530e with a charging cable, so not bad, all in all.