Installing a home charger for a Tesla is all fine and dandy, but having to plug in when you get home? That may soon be history. Sure, Tesla's working on their insanely cool/creepy robot snake charger, but Plugless thinks they have a better option for the home Tesla charger: go wireless.
Plugless, which makes wireless chargers for the Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf that mount onto your garage floor under the car, has unveiled their wireless charging solution for the Tesla Model S. Mount the pad to your garage floor and connect it to your electric line, get the corresponding charging coil installed in your car, and you'll be topping off your battery wirelessly in no time.
The system designed by Plugless is a 7.2kW charger, requiring a dedicated 50-amp breaker for 240-volt service. Plugless includes the on-floor pad and an on-wall control panel meant to be mounted at the front of the parking spot (so you'll be pulling into the garage nose-first) that helps with guiding you to be positioned for optimal charging. As an L2 charger, the Plugless system aims for 20 miles of range per hour of charging, making it perfect for home overnight charges, even for those with longer commutes.
As for the part that's installed in the car, Plugless says the vehicle adapter weights around 35 pounds and is installed at the front end of the car beneath the car's original protective panel — you won't even know that it's there, with no changes to the Model S ground clearance or entry and exit angles. Of course, if you're concerned about modifying your Tesla like this (understandably so), Plugless offers a warranty not just on their own product, but they'll cover anything that might happen to your car because of the Plugless installation — though they are "Plugless will not affect your vehicle warranty."
The most exciting potential for Plugless on a Tesla, though, is with Summon. An extension of the Tesla Autopilot feature, Summon allows your car to park itself and return from being parked, even in a garage. The only hiccup there, though, is that the car does not have the ability to plug itself in or unplug. So here's what Plugless has to say about Summon and their wireless charger:
Yes, we expect Plugless to let you send your Tesla off to charge itself. That said, we're an independent aftermarket company. Summon is an evolving feature, and we're finalizing testing. Some of the first units may not integrate with Summon. If so, reservation holders will have the option to hold shipment until the functionality is included. There is also a reasonable likelihood that we'll ship summon-ready from the beginning. More coming on this.
Car parks itself. Car charges itself. Car drives itself. Isn't the future grand?
Convinced you need this in your garage, like, yesterday? Good! Plugless is taking reservations now for the Tesla Model S wireless charger, with early reservations through April 30th going for $2,440 (we never said the future would be cheap), and starting in May for $3,290. Those prices include the cost of installation in the car, but not in your garage.
The first shipments for rear-wheel drive Model S owners are slated to begin in late May, All-wheel drive Model S owners will have to wait until an unspecified point later in the year — the front-mounted EV motor in "D" model cars changes how Plugless can design and install the adapter, so they're still working on getting it right for all Model S owners. And then, no doubt, Model X and Model 3 owners.
So, who's ready for the wireless charging future?