MATT CAMPBELL April 10, 2012
Chrysler-owned brand becomes first to offer in-car charging pad.
US car maker Chrysler has developed a wireless in-car charging pad for smartphones and mp3 players that could elimate the need for wires and cables.
The wireless charging pad – which the Chrysler Group claims is an industry first factory option – uses induction to recharge devices via an in-built charging grid.
It can boost your phone or iPod’s power level simply by placing the device on the charging surface, provided the gadget is fitted with the specially developed charging case, and that the car is running.
The system, developed by sub-brand Mopar, debuted on fellow sub-brand Dodge’s new Dart small sedan. It will be available as an option on that car when it goes on sale in the US in the second quarter of 2012.
The charging pad measures 21 centimetres by 24 cm and is fitted in the centre console under the stereo stack. In the US, Chrysler will charge $199.99 for the system, plus installation.
Chrysler Group Australia spokeswoman Lucy McLellan says the technology is something the company is looking in to for Australian buyers.
“We love new technology as much as any manufacturer, and this seems like an absolutely fabulous piece of technology,” she says. “Chrysler Australia has requested sample packs from the US, and we will test those out over the coming months.”
A decision on whether the charging pads will be offered here is expected before the end of 2012.
The Dodge Dart small sedan will likely be sold as a Chrysler if it gets the all-clear for Australian sale following the demise of the Dodge brand locally. If the Dart comes here, it will likely go on sale in 2014.
General Motors is also working on an in-car charging pad for a number of its sub-brands, but it’s not yet clear whether the technology will be available in Australia on Holden-branded cars.