Media junkies rejoice in getting "wired." Now, owners of Nissan Leaf or Chevrolet Volt plug-in cars can get similarly excited about getting "unwired."

Owners of those electric-drive models will be eligible for Plugless Power wireless electric-vehicle chargers now that maker Evatran has reached an aftermarket-charger sales and distribution agreement with SPX Service Solutions.

SPX will start installations at the homes of Leaf and Volt owners next April. SPX, which will take orders both on its website and by phone, has installed more than 13,000 Voltec, ChargPoint, Blink and GE WattStation systems. The home stations will cost between $3,500 to $4,000 for the on-board receiver, garage-floor transmitter and garage installation required for the wireless system, the New York Times reports.

In September, Evatran reached an agreement to install systems with Google and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. It also has similar commercial agreements with companies such as Hertz, Duke Energy and the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research. Check out the press release from Evatran and SPX below.
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SPX Service Solutions To Distribute And Install Plugless Power Wireless Electric Vehicle Charging Systems

Service Solutions to launch an in-home vehicle and station installation program for Nissan LEAF and Chevrolet Volt owners who purchase Plugless Power wireless charging systems

WYTHEVILLE, Va., Oct. 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ - Evatran announced today that it has signed an agreement with SPX Service Solutions to distribute and install Plugless Power wireless electric vehicle (EV) charging systems. These systems, available to individual Nissan LEAF and Chevrolet Volt owners starting in April 2013, require station installation in customers' homes, as well as, the installation of an adapter onto the undercarriage of the EV. Service Solutions will be launching a program to provide both parts of the installation process in the comfort of the EV owner's own home.

"Our goal has always been to provide EV owners with a completely convenient, hassle-free charging experience," said Rebecca Hough, Evatran Chief Operating Officer. "When we decided to launch an aftermarket product we knew we needed an equally convenient installation process for our customers. Service Solutions committing to in-home vehicle installation in parallel with station installation is a big win for us. Our customers can look forward to a quick, easy, well-managed installation process without leaving the comfort of their own homes."

Service Solutions will be selling the wireless charging systems through both its website and over-the-phone sales channels. Service Solutions kicked off its charging station manufacturing, distribution and installation business over two years ago with the goal of becoming a leader in the growing electric vehicle charging infrastructure space. Service Solutions has a network of over 900 certified and trained installation and service staff across the country, and has successfully distributed over 13,000 charge stations, including the Power Xpress, Voltec, ChargePoint, Blink and GE WattStation brands. Plugless Power™ is the Company's first wireless charging product line.

If a customer selects Service Solutions installation services with his purchase of Plugless Power, the customer's installation process will be completely managed by Service Solutions including:

Free pre-installation survey: Service Solutions will provide a site survey at no cost to the customer, to ensure all installation costs are understood prior to wireless system installation.
240V charging station installation: Based on the customer's targeted charging location, Service Solutions will manage the permitting, electrical work, and physical charging station installation process for the customer. The customer will receive updates as the process is completed.
Vehicle adapter installation: Service Solutions will provide vehicle installation services for both the Nissan LEAF and Chevrolet Volt models in the comfort of the customer's own garage or driveway. The vehicle process is expected to take about 90 minutes.
"Our EV charging programs are all about choice for the consumer. We've seen strong interest in the market for a wireless charging solution and we are pleased to add Plugless Power as an option within our portfolio of products. Evatran has the right approach to the market with an aftermarket strategy, and we feel that this partnership allows us to combine our 100 years of automotive service experience with our strong charging infrastructure business," added Kevin Mull, Service Solutions' Vice President of EV Solutions.

For more information on Plugless Power, please visit: www.pluglesspower.com.

About SPX Service Solutions
SPX Service Solutions is a leading global developer and manufacturer of advanced diagnostic systems and service solutions for automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), their dealer networks, and retail and aftermarket channels. The business also provides consulting, strategy and technical information for vehicle servicing and maintenance, as well as for charging and the servicing of electric vehicles. SPX (NYSE: SPW) is a global Fortune 500 multi-industry manufacturing company. With headquarters in Charlotte, N.C., SPX has over $5 billion in annual revenue, operations in more than 35 countries and over 18,000 employees. This description of SPX does not contemplate the pending sale of the Service Solutions business to Robert Bosch GmbH. Visit www.spx.com.

About Evatran
Plugless Power™, developed by Evatran™, is the first electric vehicle (EV) charging system on the market to offer customers a simple way to charge their EVs with the ease of wireless technology. In addition to aftermarket distribution, Evatran is currently working with automotive manufacturers to integrate the Plugless Power technology into mass-market EVs. The company has signed installation and distribution agreements with SPX Service Solutions and Sears Home Services to support the installation of Plugless Power systems nationwide. The Apollo Launch Program, an initiative started by Evatran in 2012, follows industry leaders such as Duke Energy, Clemson University, Google, and Hertz, as they trial the Plugless Power technology on their own EVs. To learn more about Plugless Power or to reserve a wireless charging system for your own EV, visit www.pluglesspower.com.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 28 Comments
      • 6 Hours Ago
      Just think you can charge everywhere, waiting in the red light, in the taxi stand, during work, at home, in the supermarket... and that allows you to use a smaller battery on the vehicle, which saves you energy while driving. You will carry less weight and you don't have the inconvenience to plug it every time. Furthermore, the wireless charging system can charge up to the power the battery stands. For households is limited to some 3-7kW, but in industrial areas you can charge up to 200 kW. Your battery will be charged in seconds. Do you really want to grab a cable carrying all that energy with your hands?
      • 6 Hours Ago
      Interesting insights in the comments secton. I am interviewing Rebecca Hough this week, would surely ask some of these questions pondered over...
      ss1591
      • 6 Hours Ago
      I know its really hard for me to plug in my Volt when I get home, it must take me 10 to 15 seconds of my valuable time! If anyone buys this they should consider giving the $4k to the NY Red Cross, WHAT A WASTE OF MONEY.
        paulwesterberg
        • 6 Hours Ago
        @ss1591
        The same could be said about keyless ignition systems. Sure it only takes a few seconds to fish the key out of your pocket and open the door, insert the key into the ignition switch and turn on the car. But it is so much nicer to just leave the key in your pocket. But I agree that these systems are a bit costly right now. I don't think these will be widely adopted until prices come down and there is a clear standard for wireless charging.
        Spec
        • 6 Hours Ago
        @ss1591
        The time savings is pretty meaningless. But one plus for it is that you won't ever 'forget to charge' your car when you don't have to plug it in. You just need to make sure you always park in your designated spot though.
      JakeY
      • 6 Hours Ago
      Too expensive at that point and for home charging, it may not be worth it (since it's usually quite convenient to plug in at home). It's more suitable for commercial use like the taxi example where you might be stopping for many times a day rather than just one or two times.
      raktmn
      • 6 Hours Ago
      I wonder how much cheaper a system like this would be if it were integrated into the car when it is built, instead of being an aftermarket item?
        MTN RANGER
        • 6 Hours Ago
        @raktmn
        From what I know, Evatran is working with GM and Nissan on getting an OEM installation option. I really doubt it will be a lot cheaper maybe $3k instead of $3.5k. Remember, the auto companies will price the option to make a profit too.
          DaveMart
          • 6 Hours Ago
          @MTN RANGER
          The $3500 to $4000 includes the bit on the wall. That is around $1500, so for the inductive charger they are talking about $2,500
        DaveMart
        • 6 Hours Ago
        @raktmn
        They are well aware that they have to take a lot of cost out to get large sales. So they no that whilst they may be able to charge a premium, it can't remain very large.
      DaveMart
      • 6 Hours Ago
      'Ms. Hough said the Plugless Power chargers would be priced at approximately $2,500, which includes installation of the receiver on the vehicle. Mr. Mull said he expected a garage-based transmitter installation to cost an additional $1,000 to $1,500, about what it costs for a standard wired charger. ' And: ' Rebecca Hough, chief operating officer of Evatran, said in an interview that its aftermarket residential chargers will operate at approximately 90 percent efficiency, though she said that units now being developed with automakers may be a few percentage points better than that.' (NYT) On their site they specify the 90% as being from the wall to the on-car battery charger.
        KenZ
        • 6 Hours Ago
        @DaveMart
        Ugh, it's not just throwing away 10% of the energy (in heat), it's throwing away 10% of a LOT of energy. People worry about the waste of keeping mobile phone chargers plugged in, efficient fridges, and what type of screen technology their TV has, but are willing to throw out 10% of the energy used to run their car????
          KenZ
          • 6 Hours Ago
          @KenZ
          DaveMart, having built inductive chargers... they will NEVER be in a similar efficiency to direct wires. Never. Don't be fooled by BS marketing. This is 10% loss ON TOP of the losses for conversion in the car for charging, which you still have to do. If they get that number down to 5% (possible), then that's still 5% on top of the other conversion losses. I applaud their optimism, but you have to be seriously rich and seriously not care about wasting energy to go for this. (Or seriously bad at math)
          DaveMart
          • 6 Hours Ago
          @KenZ
          Everything is lossy. The question is if the losses are bearable for what you are getting. If you read through the thread it is clear that similar losses are attainable to wired connections, although this first generation version looses a bit more.
          DaveMart
          • 6 Hours Ago
          @KenZ
          Sorry, I don't accept views based on authority. If you want to use that line of argument, then the companies involved including major car companies have built a lot more inductive chargers than you.
      DaveMart
      • 6 Hours Ago
      Halo: '‘We’re very keen on taxis. It’s difficult for drivers to be jumping out and plugging in… When you look at Paddington and Waterloo stations, they spend a lot of time cruising along the taxi rank for hundreds of metres and they could be picking up a charge all the way along,’ said Thomson. There are, however, some challenges remaining, not least of all cost. Retrofitting existing electric vehicles with the capability for inductive charging costs around £3,000, while the charging pads themselves cost around £2,500. Meanwhile, opponents say there are issues with charging efficiency, safety and electromagnetic compatibility (EMC). ‘There has been a lot of mythology around wireless charging being inefficient. Although we lose a couple of per cent from the road to the car, most high-frequency plug-in chargers have a similar loss through AC-DC conversion and back again,’ added Thomson.' http://www.theengineer.co.uk/sectors/automotive/tfl-depots-to-trial-inductive-charging-technology/1007568.article
      Spiffster
      • 6 Hours Ago
      Hmmm, that's a bit pricey for the convenience. I honestly dont find it all that difficult to just plug the car in manually., especially if it saves me $4k.
      Marcopolo
      • 6 Hours Ago
      When I bought my EV, wireless charging was an option. Since there were no wireless charging options available, it seemed pointless, but with optimism for the future I included the option anyway. Wireless charging is the future. It's just that much more convenient. Those who would rather plug-in, are entitled to do so, but in time, like manual transmission drivers, they will find themselves a minority. Nobody 'needs' a remote control for the TV either, but everybody has one ! Each new innovation, always has opposition from a hardy bunch of defenders of the old technology. When I was a small boy, pupils were forbidden ball point pens ! (Today, no legal document is valid unless signed in ballpoint ! ). Wireless (or induction) charging has a range of technical benefits, that will allow superior battery management and development. But, it's most just the convenience !
      MTN RANGER
      • 6 Hours Ago
      There office is near where I live. I'm a bit disappointed at the price, they had led me to believe the total cost would be $2500. At $3500-4000, I think few people would get it. Heck, I bet half of all Volt owners get by with just the included 120V EVSE. If they will not spring for a $495 240V Voltec, how much chance does a wireless system that costs 7X to 8X as much. Regarding efficiency, they were aiming for around 94% for the retail version, I guess that didn't turn out as good. The OEM version will be higher since it can be directly connected to the onboard charger, eliminating some of the loss. Remember, regular wired EVSE can lose 5% or more too due to charging losses, so the wireless isn't as bad as it seems.
        Spec
        • 6 Hours Ago
        @MTN RANGER
        I'm driving a pure EV and I've been getting by with a 120V charger for a while now. (The 240V EVSE installers are slow.) However, I do tend to work out of my home most of the time. It would be harder, though possible, to do if you have a commute that can be handled with an overnight 120V charge.
      purrpullberra
      • 6 Hours Ago
      I just don't see many early adopters to EV's willing to waste that much electricity. The convenience isn't worth it. Now, businesses are different, especially taxis but someone still has to OK this waste of electricity. They're likely to be money guys, accountants, and they hate waste. I just can't understand the problem this 'solves'. If it solved the adapter issues, chademo vs 1772, that would be awesome but it seems to add another standard not combine them. Plus I am eagerly awaiting my plug-in car and I really want the plug!
        MTN RANGER
        • 6 Hours Ago
        @purrpullberra
        Actually, the Evatran system uses the J1772 standard for communication. Retail systems are 3.3kW, Future is 6.6kW. Unfortunately, no super charging in the near future.
      Peter
      • 6 Hours Ago
      For a small battery capacity vehicle, eg the Leaf or the Volt, never mind the PIP, you have to recharge as often as you can, which translates to 300 or more plugins (and equal number of plug outs) each and every year of ownership. It doesn't take long, but it does add up. The convenience of having the car do it automatically might be worth it to those that can afford it. For a Tesla, probably no point, as the need to top up that size battery daily is much less.
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