- First Name
- Dec 1, 2019
- Reaction score
- San Francisco Bay area
- Tesla Model Y LR, Tesla Model 3 LR
- Retired AI researcher
Nice detective work. I wonder how many would willingly give up departure angle for wireless charging though. And doesn’t the other end have to be permanently installed in the ground? How many would [be able to] do that? And wireless charging is much less efficient than wired charging, but the CT will have a larger battery, so would this solution be practical? Just playing devils advocate…Here making an *educated* prediction that among the accessories offered for the Cybertruck will be a wireless charging system, utilizing the recently Tesla-acquired Wiferion platform. The recent acquisition timing obviously raises that possibility, but in addition to that remote observation I'm increasingly willing to put green money on it because:
In March’s Investor Day event, Tesla flashed a photo of a Model S parked on top of a wireless charging platform. Located in the rear of the vehicle.
In August, Tesla acquired German wireless charging company Wiferion. Here’s what Wiferion’s equipment suite looks like for industrial applications.
The above system’s source resonator/primary coil (what goes on the ground) and device resonator/secondary coil (what goes in the device) measure only ~12” by ~17”, and presumably a vehicle – especially one like the Cybertruck – would require a larger set of resonators/coils.
Startup Witricity has already licensed Wiferion tech to aftermarket upfit Model 3’s for wireless charging – in that use case, under the front 1/3 of the vehicle.
Meanwhile, for months we’ve wondered what could have required the Cybertruck to now have the ‘diaper’ in the lower rear fascia of the truck, especially given the apparent effects on departure angle. We know that the tow hitch receiver is in the box just below the license-plate cutout, but what’s been left unexplained is the remaining drop-down under the rear ¼ of the bed. Some wondered (or hoped) it was a space for a spare, but that seemed unlikely for reasons of the size and shape of the area - as well as accessibility under the rear fascia trim pieces.
While the rear fascia surely plays a role in aero, it's shape strongly suggests it must be covering something of a certain form factor, and something of some importance for Tesla to have in effect compromised on the Cybertruck’s departure angle.
That this lower fascia feature was not for a spare, was further confirmed by more recent video of a crash-tested unit missing this lower fascia altogether.
While it answered the spare tire location question (in the negative), getting a glimpse under this rear fascia raised more questions than it answered. There's nothing of any apparent importance there, other than some support structures - which themselves would not require the form factor of the lower fascia diaper. It is uncharacteristic of Tesla to leave so much space unutilized (especially at the cost of departure angle).
I got to searching for shots of Witricity/Wiferion’s equipment being licensed and installed in other automobiles (e.g., Mitsubishi), all of which to date are in light duty passenger cars (that I’ve found).
The few images I could find of the raw equipment began painting the picture – notice a shared form factor between the Witricity/Wiferion equipment and the Cybertruck's rear lower fascia/diaper? Imagine one of these units larger, for a truck?
All-in-all, I'm satisfied of the strong possibility that Tesla will (either at launch or shortly thereafter) announce the Cybertruck to be the first platform offering an optional wireless charging accessory. That rear fascia diaper will conceal the device resonator/secondary coil of a Cyber-sized wireless charging unit, placed in the rear of the vehicle (as shown in the Investor Day tease of the Model S) to be parked over a home wireless charger pad.
I'll guess these would be residential-only installs, as the ~L2 charge rates would be impractical for public charging if only from a point of relative cost of installation.