If you’ve ever been frustrated by a dead cell phone in the car, or by rummaging around your car for that special car-charger, there is a solution on the way. Chrysler has announced that the new 2013 Dodge Dart will come equipped with a wireless charging station, located right underneath the car cd player or car navigation system.
It will have the ability to charge MP3 players and the iPhone, Blackberry, and Android cell phones by using a special case. It works by using a mat fitted with one induction coil that creates alternating electromagnetic fields, and a second coil that takes power from the electromagnetic fields and converts it back to electrical current to charge the battery of your mobile devices. The two coils combine to form an electrical transformer.
When the technology first started making the rounds a few years ago the efficiency was poor and caused the units to get hot – potentially damaging lithium ion batteries. Since then the technology has improved significantly to allow greater efficiency and less heat, charging the battery in record time with no damage done.
It is activated when consumers place their battery powered device on the 8.27” x 9.5” x 3.25” power mat. The units charge only when the vehicle is on. It will be available as a $199.99 option on all new 2013 Dodge Darts.
This is the first time this feature is available OEM from the dealership, but not the first time this technology has been on the market. Powermat has been making something similar, but aftermarket, for a few years now and for as little as $25. Users have had mixed results from them, which makes me wonder how great one that is pre-installed in your vehicle is going to be. One of the largest complaints seems to be that your device must be put directly on a very small “sweet spot” in order to get it to charge. We had in mind a mat you could put the device on anywhere, but whether the units installed on the new Dart will be better or not remains to be seen.