Dual USB plug installed on Ducati Multistrada

Powerlet USB Conversion

Ever since the Germans introduced the Powerlet plug (or DIN or Hella or ISO4165 or Telefunken, or whatever you prefer to call it) the motoring public has been trying to adapt them to something useful.

This dual USB plug is designed to replace the Powerlet plug on BMW motorcycles. But with the right connectors it can be adapted for use on other motorcycles.

But now it’s easy to change your motorcycle’s DIN power outlet to USB. No adapters needed!

The Powerlet Connector

Popularized by BMW motorcycles, the connector was a standard on German vehicles during WW2. For some odd reason the 12mm two-pole plug is still found on many European motorcycles. Don’t get me wrong– the Powerlet has definite advantages over the common cigarette lighter power outlet. But these days what do we typically plug into these things? A USB adapter! In this century it makes more sense to just provide 5VDC via the USB outlet that most electronics require.

There are a number of adapter cables to make a Powerlet outlet useful. Some riders modify their accessory’s original cord to add a Powerlet plug. That’s fine for a heated vest or radar detector. But in the modern age 12 volt output of the accessory plug is unusable for smartphones, tablets, etc. USB outlets operate at 5 VDC, so a voltage transformer is required.

USB Power Outlet on Ducati MTS1200
USB outlet installed on a Ducati Multistrada.

This tidy little gadget is designed as a direct replacement for the Powerlet plug-in on most BMW motorcycles and provides two USB power outlets. It even came with a wrench! With a little connector swapping it’s a simple upgrade for any Ducati, KTM, Triumph or Indian originally equipped with the telefunky plug. Factory style connectors can be found at Mouser Electronics to make it all nice and spiffy.

Dual USB Outlet Powerlet Conversion

Prefer to keep it simple?
There are a variety of adapters that plug directly into the Powerlet connection. This example rotates to allow easy access or avoid obstructions.

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