Evatran Plugless wireless charger for Tesla Model SEnlarge Photo
Wireless charging for electric cars has been talked about almost as long as modern electric cars have been on sale.
The thought of charging an electric car without having to wrestle with a bulky charging cable can certainly be appealing.
So far, though, wireless-charging systems have only been available in limited quantities from a handful of aftermarket companies.
Now Evatran says it hopes to expand the availability of wireless charging dramatically with its second-generation system.
By the end of 2017, the company claims it will offer systems compatible with 80 percent of the electric cars on the road in North America.
This follows the recent announcement of a limited launch of the system—called Plugless—for certain versions of the Tesla Model S.
2016 Tesla Model SEnlarge Photo
The Evatran wireless system uses inductive charging, in which a magnetic field is created by running electricity through a coil.
As with other similar systems, one coil is placed on the ground, and another is mounted to the vehicle's underside.
Evatran claims the receiving coil that attaches to the vehicle is just 1.0 inch thick, ensuring that clearance won't be an issue.
The second coil that sits on the ground (and must be connected to a power source) is weatherproofed for outdoor use.
Plugless will initially be available in two specifications: a 7.2-kilowatt version for the Model S, and a 3.6-kW version for the second-generation Chevrolet Volt.
Evatran is currently taking reservations for both versions, although systems for rear-wheel drive Model S sedans will ship before versions for all-wheel drive "D" cars, the company notes.
2017 Chevrolet VoltEnlarge Photo
The company also hopes to offer wireless charging systems for the Tesla Model X, along with the Model 3, when that car enters production.
A third, 6.6-kW version of the Plugless will cover electric cars from other manufacturers, potentially including the Nissan Leaf.
For most drivers of plug-in electric cars, aftermarket systems will likely be the only option for wireless charging for the time being.
To date, only Mercedes-Benz has confirmed wireless charging for a production model.
That model will be the low-volume S550e plug-in hybrid luxury sedan, which will get optional wireless charging as part of an update for 2018.