GM Adds Wireless Charging To The Volt
Well, that's a misleading headline, isn't it? Unfortunately, the wireless charging in this case has nothing to do with the Volt's lithium-ion battery. It's a little more pedestrian than that. The technology in question is for wireless charging of cell phones and other gadgets inside the car.
Chevy announced earlier this year that it plans to team with Powermat, the manufacturer behind the wireless, magnetic-induction charging mats, to offer Powermat charging inside select models beginning in another year or two. The in-car charging mats will enable drivers and passengers to charge their gadgets without having to use the typical 12V power adapter.
As part of the deal, GM will invest $5 million in Powermat, to help them develop the technology.
The only vehicle Chevy mentioned in its announcement was the Chevy Volt, but the automaker states that the charging systems will extend to all four of its U.S. brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevy and GMC. Chevy plans to get the systems out within 18 months.
If you aren't familiar with Powermat, the company launched its wireless mats in 2009. The mats use magnetic induction to send electricity between charger and phone, eliminating the need for a hard-wired adapter. On the downside, Powermats require charging cases for each device being charged and require that the device is placed on top.
It may not have the biggest impact on your ride, but eliminating the need for an adapater should make in-vehicle charging a little easier.