Ram Trucks might become the first car manufacturer to offer a widely-available factory original wireless charger for electric vehicles in the United States, beating Tesla’s snake charger and other Chinese companies' efforts.
During last week’s Ram 1500 Revolution concept reveal, the American carmaker offered a glimpse of its upcoming inductive charging robot named Ram Charger, which has nothing to do with the old Dodge Ramcharger truck.
“We know from our Real Talk tour that our customers aren’t just concerned for how long a charge will last on the road, but also how easy it is to charge,” said Ram’s CEO, Mike Koval. “And with our upcoming new inductive robot charger, or Ram Charger, that will make home charging as easy as possible,” he added during his keynote speech at the 2023 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Koval confirmed for Green Car Reports that the charging robot will make it into production, but that it’s still in development at the moment.
Developed by EFI Automotive, the robot navigates from its base to the underside of the car, positioning itself perfectly under the inductive receiver on the vehicle, and then lifts a disc-shaped inductive pad, essentially making contact with the car’s charging pad. When it’s done, it goes back to its pole-shaped base.
With this strategy, the company claims the robot achieves an efficiency of 97%, which is better than other inductive charging systems that leave an air gap between the charger and receiver.
Ram says the robot can provide up to 7 kilowatts (kW) of power and that it can be programmed to charge the electric pickup on off-peak hours when the price of electricity is lower. The company also mentions that it’s aiming for a start in production in 2025.
EFI Automotive claims that its inductive charging robot can even improve the vehicle’s battery life by 15 percent, although it didn’t offer details as to how it got to this number – charging power, charging habits, or both.
As of yet, no American-made EVs offer wireless charging capabilities, so if Ram gets this right, it might become the first US-based carmaker to offer such a device to a wide audience.
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