Genesis GV60 to gain wireless charging capability

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When Genesis debuted the GV60 online last week, the accompanying press release hyped the Crystal Sphere that provides mood lighting on one side and a gear shifter on the other. Someone decided that was more important than wireless charging, a capability Green Car Reports discovered the GV60 will enable at some point next year. The GV60 is anticipated to go on sale in South Korea later this year and reach our shores sometime next year with conventional charging only. GCR says the wireless rollout will then begin in South Korea late next year with a pilot program to gather data.

Assuming the pilot program returns good news, it's not clear how much longer it would take for Genesis to expand the tech to other markets, or for the Hyundai Group to enable the tech on the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6 that share their E-GMP bones with the GV60.

American firm WiTricity is tabbed as the wireless charging hardware provider, and we know Hyundai's been working with WiTricity for at least three years. Hyundai showed a Kona EV concept at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show with WiTricity cordless charging, and a month after the show, WiTricity's CEO told technology site IEEE that an unnamed OEM would debut wireless EV charging that year. Obviously, that didn't happen, but WiTricity did provide the wireless phone charging pads for the 2019 Kona Electric.

The following year, BMW introduced a wireless charging system for its 530e PHEV, the first OEM vehicle in the U.S. to offer it; two years later, the BMW unit is still only available in limited markets and still in the data-gathering phase.

According to the report, wireless charging for the GV60 will be a cost option, the cost still a mystery. In 2018, WiTricity's CEO said all the hardware for a wireless system would be about $800 more than a wired-up charger. The performance stats are closer. WiTricity's site says "Most Level 2 chargers are between 89-94% efficient, and so is the wireless charging built on WiTricity’s technology" across the typical ground-clearance gap for an EV. SlashGear reports the wireless system needing just six hours to recharge the GV60 according to Genesis, "compared to 10 hours when using a conventional wall charger." The BMW inductive system needed 3.5 hours to charge a 9.2-kWh battery at a 3.2-kW charging rate. Since the GV60 is expected to get a battery that's a minimum of 58 kWh and potentially 77.4 kWh, it appears we're talking about a wireless charging rate of at least 11 kW.

We'll have to wait for specs to put all of this together. Even then, with the wireless charging option not anticipated until late next year, and in Asia, Genesis might make us wait a while to find out if it wants to be the first OEM on the market with this feature.

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