Evatran's Plugless Power wireless EV charger gets smaller, conscripts Chevy Volts for testing

When it comes to technology, the old adage of "bigger is better" died a long time ago, so it's not a surprise to see "smaller is smarter" thinking apply to products and prototypes across the board. Today's (relatively) tiny wonder is Evatran's Plugless Power electric vehicle charging system: now smaller, more efficient, and primed for its first trial phase. The last time we saw Plugless Power, the system's wireless charging "station block" stretched nearly the length of a full vehicle and charged at 80 percent efficiency. Today the charge block is only slightly larger than an average hubcap, boasts a 97 percent charging efficiency, and is less picky about your car missing the wireless charger's "sweet spot." Evatran is now working on launching a test fleet of up to 12 Chevy Volts to put the system through its paces, and hopes to expand the tests to as many as 30 vehicles by January. Ready to ditch pumps and plugs forever? Start saving: a complete Plugless Power system (including vehicle retrofitting) will set you back as much as $5000 after production starts sometime in 2012. Don't be too surprised, cool stuff rarely comes cheap -- besides, that old adage has to apply to something, doesn't it?