BMW 530e iPerformance to get world’s first system for wireless charging

BMW will be the first mass-market car manufacturer to introduce wireless charging of a battery unit with the 530e iPerformance.

The system, due to be offered with the hybrid 5 Series from next year, is based on that used by the i8 safety car in the Formula E race series.

It is said that it is able to load the 530e of the lithium ion battery in 3.5 hours – only 1.5 hours more than the fastest of the current box wall plug offered with the car.

As the i8 safety car (photo below), that the Bus has been driven on the track, the 530e wireless system uses the magnetic resonance inductive coupling technology developed by the Formula E partner Qualcomm, to create an electromagnetic field. The 9.2 kWh of the battery can be charged at a rate of up to 3.2 kW over this field.

Charging begins automatically as soon as the car is parked on the cargo floor of the pad and your ignition is switched off. Drivers can drive their vehicle on the surface by means of guide lines is displayed on the console of center of information and entertainment of the screen. BMW says that the position of the pad can be placed inside a garage or outdoors.

Although it has only been confirmed for the 530e iPerformance, the wireless charging system will be almost sure to extend to other electric models from BMW, the i8, a facelift in the coming months, the next most likely candidate.

The car is expected to avoid the 7.1 kWh battery of the current i8 to a larger, 10kWh of the battery pack, as used by the enhanced Formula E safety car.