Superchargers opening up to other EVs later this year

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shareef777

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Remember when I mentioned that I suspect there's a quiet battle in the Tesla board about whether to remain an exclusive luxury automaker or go mainstream and compete with Ford, GM, Toyota, etc? The mainstream push is being led by Elon Musk. His overarching goal is to make EV's affordable and commonplace, and he's willing to opensource the Tesla charging connector and the Supercharger network to get there. So an order to open up the Superchargers to other manufacturers would come directly from him. It's not particularly a good business decision, but it fits with his personal mission.

But there's still that battle going on at Tesla, and there is a pretty good chance that without Elon breathing down their necks, some of the board members will find some way to sabotage the deal and keep the Supercharger network proprietary and closed.

I don't see how opening up the SC network is going mainstream. If Elon's "personal mission" is spreading EVs (which I don't believe is his ulterior motive), then ensuring Tesla's continued success should be his only goal. There's still A LOT of growth happening at Tesla. The new S/X aren't fully caught up, the 3/Y are going further and further backlogged, and then there's the yet to be released CyberTruck/Semi, not to mention the still undefined "$25k" Tesla. There's just far too many unknowns to open up the SC network to non-Tesla vehicles.

If Tesla didn't exist, every ICE manufacturer would only have EVs on a drawing board somewhere in a basement, and they'd be perfectly content with going back to that.
 

garsh

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If Elon's "personal mission" is spreading EVs (which I don't believe is his ulterior motive)...
He's on the record several times that this was his goal.
It's even spelled out in the Master Plan.


"...the overarching purpose of Tesla Motors (and the reason I am funding the company) is to help expedite the move from a mine-and-burn hydrocarbon economy towards a solar electric economy, which I believe to be the primary, but not exclusive, sustainable solution."
 
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shareef777

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He's on the record several times that this was his goal.
It's even spelled out in the Master Plan.


"...the overarching purpose of Tesla Motors (and the reason I am funding the company) is to help expedite the move from a mine-and-burn hydrocarbon economy towards a solar electric economy, which I believe to be the primary, but not exclusive, sustainable solution."

He's also "on the record" every two weeks for you know what ;)
 
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MicheleDFrankie

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This right here. I completely agree with @Bigriver. If we truly want EVs to become the new normal, we need to drop the "us vs them" elitist mentality when it comes to charging stations.

I prefer to view this news as another step towards the Tesla Supercharger becoming the industry standard. I know it probably won't but I can always hope.
Yes, all true, but I would hope that Tesla’s are able to jump the line if it’s crowded and maybe even get charged a lower rate. That would be nice.
 

JasonF

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Yes, all true, but I would hope that Tesla’s are able to jump the line if it’s crowded and maybe even get charged a lower rate. That would be nice.

This may be the right time to bring up an idea I had again:

My idea is that when you navigate to a Supercharger in your Tesla, the same system that tells you how many stalls available should automatically reserve one for you (or a spot in line) when you arrive. To everyone else, it will show as "Reserved", and won't allow them to charge at that station - or when your turn comes up in line, the system grabs a station for you and immediately "reserves" it so only you can charge there. You'll have a certain grace period to start charging, so if you change your mind and drive on, the reservation expires.

That can be the exclusive Tesla feature. If anyone with another manufacturer of car arrives, they would just see stations reserved, or they have to wait in the standby queue.
 

garsh

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Yes, all true, but I would hope that Tesla’s are able to jump the line if it’s crowded and maybe even get charged a lower rate. That would be nice.
I disagree. Playing favorites has a whole other list of downsides.

I'm sure there were also some Model S and X owners who were thinking that they should get preferential treatment at superchargers compared to all of us Model 3 owners.

My idea is that when you navigate to a Supercharger in your Tesla, the same system that tells you how many stalls available should automatically reserve one for you (or a spot in line) when you arrive. To everyone else, it will show as "Reserved", and won't allow them to charge at that station - or when your turn comes up in line, the system grabs a station for you and immediately "reserves" it so only you can charge there. You'll have a certain grace period to start charging, so if you change your mind and drive on, the reservation expires.
That's exactly how ChargePoint stations work. It's an optional feature, but our company turned it on once contention became too great at our office.

The best solution to these issues is
  1. Continue to increase supercharging speed/power - cars will finish charging more quickly, allowing other cars to finish sooner too.
  2. Install more capacity where contention still happens.
 
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Bigriver

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For those who are concerned about having to wait in line behind non-Tesla’s, are you worried about waiting in line behind the 300,000+ new Tesla’s being sold in the US this year? As more EVs hit the road, of course we need more superchargers. The non-Tesla portion is still small, as @garsh showed, and cannot be the primary driving force for SC crowding.

For those who are worried this is a bad business decision because they are giving up their competitive advantage, what if Tesla were collecting $1000 (for example) royalty from the other manufacturers for every EV they sell? I would love to see the balance sheet line item for Tesla’s profit from every EV sold by any manufacturer!

Teslafi tells me that I have been to 79 different supercharging locations, and hundreds of supercharging sessions. I have never waited. I have been the only car many more times than being at a high usage SC. For reference, this is the no trouble zone I have travelled in for the last 3.5 years.
B06BD189-4605-44D8-8691-FC10E0F7D2F4.jpeg


My idea is that when you navigate to a Supercharger in your Tesla, the same system that tells you how many stalls available should automatically reserve one for you (or a spot in line) when you arrive.
I think Tesla definitely needs to improve the info available to the user about SCs, and guidance on which stall is among the things that would be helpful. I’m not so sure about giving Tesla’s priority or a better price, as I don’t know that does anything to help the non-Tesla EV community feel any better about Tesla and those who own Tesla’s. I would wish to lessen, not increase, the image of us as entitled.
 

shareef777

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This may be the right time to bring up an idea I had again:

My idea is that when you navigate to a Supercharger in your Tesla, the same system that tells you how many stalls available should automatically reserve one for you (or a spot in line) when you arrive. To everyone else, it will show as "Reserved", and won't allow them to charge at that station - or when your turn comes up in line, the system grabs a station for you and immediately "reserves" it so only you can charge there. You'll have a certain grace period to start charging, so if you change your mind and drive on, the reservation expires.

That can be the exclusive Tesla feature. If anyone with another manufacturer of car arrives, they would just see stations reserved, or they have to wait in the standby queue.

That's assuming people use navigation to get to the SC station. I've just pulled up on numerous occasions, and it'd be pretty difficult to know if a stall was reserved or not.

Additionally, the "grace period" would likely be as long as some people need to charge. On my road trip this past weekend, I went from Chicago-> St Louis and stopped off at Springfield. That lone stop off only required a 10min charge. Would suck if I couldn't plug in and be on my way in 10min because the stalls were reserved.
 
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FRC

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I see any type of priority system causing more problems than it would solve. I foresee other drivers trying to utilize a reserved stall unsuccessfully, causing confusion and frustration. I'm also trying to imagine the reaction of drivers waiting to charge when a reservationist whips it into the first available stall, apparently breaking in line.

The solution to the possibility of supercharger overcrowding is to:
a) Build enough SCs to stay ahead of the demand, or
b) Increase the cost at overcrowded SC's to drive down the demand.
 
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JasonF

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I see any type of priority system causing more problems than it would solve. I foresee other drivers trying to utilize a reserved stall unsuccessfully, causing confusion and frustration. I'm also trying to imagine the reaction of drivers waiting to charge when a reservationist whips it into the first available stall, apparently breaking in line.

That's how reservations work!

Ultimately the solution is not to let superchargers get really overloaded with drivers, but there are still bound to be times when it's busy.
 

bwilson4web

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Tesla creates a CCS1-to-Tesla-Supercharging adapter
The risk is an adapter would have two connectors for each power wire: (1) cable-to-adapter, and (2) adapter-to-vehicle. These are notorious for having small resistances that generate heat.

Complicating the problem, I can see future, higher power SuperChargers making sure there is active, conductor cooling within the Tesla vehicle side. Other EVs, especially after seeing the Munro videos, not so much.

Bob Wilson
 
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garsh

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I’ll feel better if there was a cost per minute that over rode cost per kWh … I don’t want slow chargers clogging things up.
By "slow chargers", do you mean "vehicles that are charging more slowly than what the charger will support"?

I agree, that's an issue. I would hope that Tesla will require some "minimum charging speed" in order to allow cars to use the supercharger network. A Taycan could easily use the full speed, but a Nissan Leaf could clog things up at its 50kW max.
 
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slasher016

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I've waited in the midwest on holiday weekends. But the truth is, they need to expand the number of superchargers even if it's only Tesla using them. Hopefully this will accelerate that. There needs to be a v3 supercharger every 50 miles or so along major routes. With V3 speed and that depth of chargers, no one will be waiting.
 

Bigriver

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I would hope that Tesla will require some "minimum charging speed" in order to allow cars to use the supercharger network.
Absolutely. Tesla opening the network doesn’t mean Tesla accommodating everyone in whatever state they are at, but Tesla will be in control of defining specs.

I would also note that not all Tesla’s can charge at the highest speeds. Model 3 SR and model S/X 75D’s used to be limited to around 100 kW peak. I don’t know if that has changed. The peak on my 2017 model X 100D is 150 kW.
 
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