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When it comes to innovation, automotive conglomerate BMW hasn’t shied away from looking into news ways of advancing their brands. Back in January, I published a piece that discussed how BMW was adding a new feature to some of their models that would enable drivers to park their vehicles using their car keys. It turns out this is just one of numerous technological feats BMW is taking on in their effort to further modernize (or as some would like to describe it—“futurize”) their cars.

BMW is set to become the first automotive company to offer induction recharging for its vehicles. Although BMW has become the first company to achieve this feat, multiple car companies have been investing time and resources in developing the technology for induction battery recharging for plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles. BMW is expected to begin marketing their wireless induction recharging systems later in 2018.

Their system still uses the same principles as wireless charging for mobile phones, and will recharge a vehicle using pads installed on the floor of your driveway or garage. Drivers will simply park their vehicle over the pad, and use sensors on the car that direct them where to steer so the vehicle and charger can properly communicate. In the coming months, BMW’s first model to be fitted with this technology will be the 530e iPerformance plug-in hybrid.

The vehicle has a 9.4 kWh battery that can be fully charged in about three and a half hours. In addition, other models soon expected to be fitted with the technology are the 330e and X5 hybrid, along with future i3 and i8 models. The induction charging system will only be capable of recharging relevant BMW models, but is likely to work on other non-BMW models in the future, considering this technology has been developed in conjunction with other manufacturers and suppliers.

A spokesperson from BMW wouldn’t verify any details regarding pricing on the wireless induction technology, and even dismissed speculations that costs could fall in the realm of €3000, since the charging pad would need to be installed in your garage or driveway by a BMW-approved electrician.

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