Recharging electric cars is something many people get concerned over. How much does it cost? Where can I recharge? How long will it take?
The Telsa Model 3 is set to arrive to Australian customers any day now and based on international sales numbers, it’s likely this becomes Australia’s top selling EV. This makes the questions around charging more acute than for any other battery powered car.
With Government failing to build EV infrastructure, Tesla didn’t wait like other manufacturers, they built their own charging infrastructure, because they understood recharging would be a barrier to entry for many Australians.
Tesla now has a substantial Superhcarging network available throughout most of the east coast of Australia, where a majority of Australia’s population lives. When combined with an army of destination chargers and the included portable 240v charger, Tesla vehicles can achieve the freedom driving was intended to deliver.
As impressive as the Superchargers network is, charging for EVs is evolving rapidly. To keep up, Tesla are upgrading their Superchargers to support the new CCS Type 2 (CCS2) standard required by the Model 3. This is the first step, the second is upgrade chargers to V3, currently only available in the US, speeds up charging rates from 120kW to 250kW.
Retrofitting the Superchargers means Tesla are sending teams of engineers to each of the Supercharging locations to upgrade them. This requires the back of the charger to be removed and the second charging cable to be installed, with the plastic shroud replaced to add the additional connector dock. There’s also a couple of new stickers to help users understand which cable is for them.
Once the upgrade has been completed, the charger then needs to be tested on a vehicle, and as much as 30 minutes to connect back to Tesla HQ and reflect the new charging options on the Tesla maps (in the car).
After photos emerged online from Euroa yesterday, today was Wodonga’s turn. Previously only 2 of the 6-bays were upgraded, but today the remaining 4 were upgraded.
This is great news for those people planning to travel between Sydney and Melbourne as Wodonga will be a critical recharge location. Having only 2 CCS2 chargers would have certainly created long waiting times, while 6 should support charging needs for a while (assuming the ICEing stops).
I had the chance to have a quick chat with the Tesla engineers doing the upgrades and from what they tell me, it seems all Superchargers in Australia will become the dual connector type, supporting both Model S and Model X vehicles, as well as the new Model 3.
The idea of the new standard is that it offers faster charging, making for a better owner experience. Faster charging is one thing, but better availability is also another key important attribute. CCS2 is quickly becoming the standard for charging in Australia, so you’ll find them at Chargefox locations as well.
Naturally 3rd party chargers come with their own mobile app and cost structure, but adding these locations to your available options for fast charging, means the Model 3 will be the fastest charging and have the most charging options of any EV to date. Combine that with the best range and it turns charging from something you have to plan for, to infrastructure that just works.