Charging monopoly

Charging monopoly

This question doesn't apply to the present, but the future; we are still in the early days, so it makes sense that Tesla currently has the only large supercharging network.

In the future, will we see independent charging stations, so we have choice and competition? The recent rate hike should wake us all up to the fact that we are wholly dependant on Tesla for fuel prices, at least when away from home.

hokiegir1 | January 22, 2019

Only if you confine yourself to "fast" chargers at the moment. And the S/X have use of chademo, which will likely come to the 3 at some point, which would then eliminate the monopoly. Granted, public stations are still lacking compared to the supercharger network, but they are out there.

TranzNDance | January 22, 2019

I see various charging stations in the Bay Area, and sometimes there is one a few feet away from Superchargers. Tesla has a superior product so people would gravitate toward it.

Mozart | January 22, 2019

Tesla supercharging is a bargain when compared to the other DC fast chargers out there. They charge a lot more than 31 cents per kilowatt hour

gballant4570 | January 22, 2019

At some point there will be a standardization for charging. Its already starting to happen in Europe. Of course one of the perks of EV ownership is charging at home.

Lots more possibilities when compared to gasoline and ICE vehicles. Very few people have gasoline delivered to their residence, zero automated deliveries - as is always the case with electricity.

andy.connor.e | January 22, 2019

That being said, the rate hike was reduced to a 10% increase.

You wanna talk about a monopoly? We have one choice when it comes to fuel. Gasoline. We dont have multiple fuel options for our cars. Know whats also similar to that? In some regions where there isnt a gas station for 50 miles, the price can be nearly 2x higher than normal.You should only be supercharging for long distance travel, and not for general charging.

What you are saying is true though, that we rely on Tesla for long distance charging. -> That being said, the response to that is "NO KIDDING". Thats why Tesla has Americas best selling car. Because they are the only ones doing it right. Thats why people buy Tesla. The electric vehicle charging infrastructure is in its infant stages.

CharleyBC | January 22, 2019

Andy nailed it. We bought a Tesla largely because of the Supercharger “monopoly”. Chevrolet couldn’t support us on a long-distance trip, so they didn’t get our business.

It’s not a nefarious monopoly of exclusion, but rather one of being the first in the field.

andy.connor.e | January 22, 2019

"It’s not a nefarious monopoly of exclusion, but rather one of being the first in the field."


CST | January 22, 2019

@CharleyBC - you couldn't find one of the many level 3 chargers for the Bolt? I know that there are quite a few chademo and CCM chargers around.

TranzNDance | January 22, 2019

Some places have gas prices that are twice as high as some other places. Rural stations particularly have gouging prices. Where is the outrage there? People just have different expectations thanks to Tesla.

rxlawdude | January 22, 2019

@C S T, you realize that the Bolt doesn't even come with Level 3/DCFC standard?

mabuck | January 22, 2019

Not really a monopoly. Look at the plugshare app. There are literally thousands more chargers than what Tesla has in the US and Europe. Tesla even gives you an adapter so you can use those chargers. If they wanted a true monopoly, why give you the adapter? lol. No one forced you to buy their car

kcheng | January 22, 2019

"andy.connor.e | January 22, 2019
That being said, the rate hike was reduced to a 10% increase."

Confused, because in my neck of the woods, the increase went from 22c to 31c, a 41% increase, then dropped to 28c, so a 27% increase net. Did they only increase your rates 10%?

andy.connor.e | January 22, 2019


Dont take that to heart. I saw a quick article when i went to my general news feed that used those numbers. Know that it was reduced. By how much? Probably depends where you are.



sowa.greg | January 22, 2019

@andy.connor.e - Tesla backpedaled and *reduced* the intended increase amount (originally around 30%) by about 10%.

CharleyBC | January 22, 2019

@CST: It's not that I couldn't find ONE charger for the Bolt. But I couldn't find a convenient network of many that would reliably support our travels around the country. Maybe I didn't look hard enough, but it wasn't apparent to me when I was doing my research. I mostly found stuff like this when I was hunting for Bolt fast-charging options:

slingshot18 | January 22, 2019

It's not a monopoly. I make my own electricity and charge at home.

SteveWin1 | January 22, 2019

An increase of 33% followed by a 10% decrease from that new higher price is just under a 20% net increase. So it's still a decent increase. 5% increase per month over several months would have gone mostly unnoticed. It was the abruptness of the increase that caused problems for them. I'm sure if the 33% higher price is what they want, they'll end up raising it again one this news dies down.

kevin_rf | January 22, 2019

The monopoly is with the power companies. Any commercial charger is going to repackage what the utilities are selling them. They may use a battery to charge off peak, but still it's just a repackaging.

The danger occurs when the power companies look at chargers as additional revenue streams and decide to play the long game and cut out the middle men like Telsa, Chargepoint, EvGo, ect...

ODWms | January 22, 2019

Guys, I’m new to the whole experience, so excuse me if I sound it. But do those chademo and other chargers actually charge efficiently enough to facilitate real world usage? I mean, can you charge a Bolt at these Chargepoint places and be on your way on a trip for, say 200 miles until the next charger?

I ask because I hear these arguments all the time in favor of other EVs and their ability to take one in a real, interstate trip.

andy.connor.e | January 22, 2019


Then we should simply be smarter than to ever feel the need to use them. Utility companies will realize eventually that everything cannot be a business.

CorkChop | January 23, 2019

Dependant. I think you mean dependent and no you are not because they have you an adapter and you can use it anywhere you want, not just Tesla chargers. And as far a the rate hike, you might want to look at the alternatives and tell me who is cheaper/faster. I've done the leg work already but check for yourself and you will find that even with the 33% rate hike that was lowered to 10%, they are a lot cheaper.

One of the reasons I bought a Tesla was because of the SC network. Have you seen and used the alternatives? They are all crap.

ajbutler45 | January 23, 2019

I live in Minnesota and there aren't many fast charging options other then Tesla Superchargers here. Other manufacturers are just commuter cars.

Tuning In | January 23, 2019

By the time this whole theoretical exercise could possibly be a remote reality, I think that it'll be time the replace the car anyhow. If the charging infrastructure is an issue, then I could easily make it a non-issues by not getting a Tesla.

jordanrichard | January 23, 2019

ODWms, welcome to the mad house. Some of us are on meds and some others aren’t........... :-)

Seriously though, fast DC charging cars other than Teslas is only found a relatively limited number of locations and the connector on those chargers is what is called Chademo. Not all EVs can utilize one of these. As a mater of fact, for a Tesla to use one of these non supercharger DC fast chargers, one needs to buy the Chademo adapter.

RES IPSA | January 23, 2019

@Jordan... Can one buy a Chademo adapter for a Tesla Model 3 (or any Tesla for that matter)? I cannot find one on the Tesla website

jimglas | January 24, 2019

@RES: adapter only available for MX and MS currently

jordanrichard | January 24, 2019

RES, presently there is no Chademo adapter for the 3, and I don't know why, but it is and has been available for years for the S and X.

PhillyGal | January 24, 2019

In my limited experience with non-Tesla chargers their price is very high!

CorkChop | January 24, 2019

Electrify America charges $1.00 to connect regardless of how long you need to charge plus $.30 to .35 PER MINUTE.

majassow | January 24, 2019

@corkchop: OMG. I just supercharged for 20 minutes, and it cost me only $6.40. but, I guess that's $0.32/min. (And I was only getting 45kw... It would have easily been double that if not sharing). Not sure what you are upset about. Seems pretty reasonable if you get above 40-60kw charging. Yeah, the $1 fixed price makes those 5 minute stops costly.

RES IPSA | January 24, 2019

@Jordan & @Jim... thanks

kcheng | January 24, 2019

@ODW, independent charging networks are just starting to roll out faster DC chargers, like EVgo. Still in the demo phase, as these ultra-fast chargers are free, while they're being tested.

ReD eXiLe ms us | January 25, 2019

I really despise the word 'monopoly' being used incorrectly.

BL!NK, Chargepoint, Electrify America, Sun Country Highway... I think most of these began before the Tesla Supercharger network. In times past charging networks were often either free or gouged for the price of electricity supplied to electric vehicles.

No one has a monopoly on charging electric vehicles, nor should they. There is no captive audience or walled garden for electricity as there is for petroleum fuels. There is no specified or regulated maximum or minimum cost for electricity. You can make it yourself if you want. Water, wind, sunlight, geothermal... There are several different ways of generating electricity.

When it comes to convenience, some charging locations are sponsored by a local municipality or even State government. Some are set up as a courtesy by local businesses. Some companies are set up to sell charging hardware, called EVSEs. Sometimes that hardware is leased to whatever entity that supplies the power.

There is no equivalent of 'Standard Oil' when it comes to charging electric vehicles, and no 'Ma Bell' either. To my knowledge, Tesla has neither acquired nor 'forced out', nor prevented or discouraged others from building charging networks. If you'll remember, when regulators were considering punishment for Volkswagen, it was Elon Musk that suggested that rather than expanding fines, the offending company be allowed to show their remorse for Dieselgate by dedicating funds to the installation of an electric vehicle charging network. The result of that was the creation of Electrify America.

No one is forced to buy anything from Tesla, including electricity. No one is limited to a singular choice for electric vehicles. Tesla made their vehicles in a manner that allowed them to use every charging standard available by 2015. Tesla took their own charging standard to the SAE before the Model S was released. They demonstrated its use for both AC charging at up to 80 A and DC Fast Charging beginning at 90 kW in a simple, sleek plug, then proposed it become a standard for charging all electric vehicles. Tesla was told they didn't know what they were doing, that they would go out of business 'any day now', and that they should shut up, sit down, let the REAL automotive companies decide what to do, or get the [FLOCK] out.

So no, it was not Tesla's intention to create a moat, walled garden, or exclusive charging experience at all. Since 2013 Tesla has said the Supercharger Network would be open to any automotive manufacturer that chose to join it, but that would only be for those who did so in good faith. Meaning, no hybrids, only long range fully electric cars, and participating companies would pay their fair share for the upkeep and expansion of the Supercharger Network. Originally it was said there would be no direct cost to third party end users of the Supercharger network either, so no biling or extra cost, it would be a strictly business-to-business transaction. But no, the Superchargers would not 'slow down' to deliver less power to smaller capacity, sub-40 kWh battery packs either. It could only be used with long range EVs capable of accepting the full rate of charge, so as to promote the convenience of the Supercharger Network for long distance travel. Tesla will not become... 'The NeXT EXXON!!!' by establishing a 'charging monopoly'.

andy.connor.e | January 25, 2019

To add to that, it isnt Tesla's fault that no one else wants to build a fast charging network across the country. Which i believe is what you're really frustrated about, that Tesla is the only one that currently has this.

Iwantmy3 | January 25, 2019

Forget Chademo adapters. We need CCS or CCS2 adapters. The European fleet will all be on this standard. It must be possible to supply us an adapter for it in NA.