BMW launches GroundPad to make charging easier
BMW has announced the UK launch of the GroundPad wireless charger. Available later this year, it will be offered on a lease basis. Prices are yet to be announced.
Designed to make charging easier for its customers the GroundPad system works through inductive charging. The system will be launched for the BMW 530e plug in hybrid, making life easier for the busy executive. No details have been issued as to whether the system will me made available for the BMW i3 or BMW i8 vehicles.
Once fitted in the owners garage or driveway the owner simply parks over the charger. Video cameras assist the driver in parking over the device correctly. The device also comes with a smartphone app from which the owner can monitor the charging. The car will automatically start charging once the ignition is switched off. A full charge will take up to 3.5 hours.
In addition to the GroundPad the car will also need to have a CarPad fitted. Once fitted the distance between the two pads is around 3 inches. The magnetic field is created by the GroundPad which induces an electric current in the CarPad. this current charges the car’s batteries.
The system, although more convenient is not as efficient as a plug-in charger. The new system is claimed to be 85% efficient, 5% less than a plug-in system.
The GroundPad also emits ambient radiation, BMW says that the device automatically switches off if pets or suchlike approach it.