BMW's wireless car charging pad arrives this summer

You'll need the right car, though.

The notion of wirelessly charging your car is no longer a distant prospect... if you have the right ride. Car has heard that BMW will start producing an inductive charging pad for the 530e plug-in hybrid in July, with a release by the end of the summer. Autoblog has confirmed that the pad will be available in the US in addition to the expected European release. It's not certain how much the pad will cost, but one thing's for sure: you can't just walk into the dealership and buy one.

In Europe, where many 530e drivers lease, the charging pad will be limited to a leasing option for the PHEV. And in the US, it'll only be available in California as part of a pilot program. This isn't quite the broad deployment you'd hope for.

Nonetheless, it's still a significant move. BMW has been talking about wireless car charging since 2014, and went so far as to partner with Daimler on the technology to help spur its adoption (Mercedes' S560e should support it later in 2018). Now, it finally has something ready to show. While the current technology is only really practical for PHEVs (it should take 3.5 hours to top up the 530e's 9.2kW battery), it hints at a future where you don't have to think about plugging in when you're at home.