Elon Musk has mentioned that the use of Superchargers will be free for owners of ALL (future) Tesla EV models (S, X, Gen3, etc.)

Elon Musk has mentioned that the use of Superchargers will be free for owners of ALL (future) Tesla EV models (S, X, Gen3, etc.)

I remember having heard him say that in one of his interview's.

But I just cannot remember which particular interview that was (must be several interviews actually).

Therefore I would like some help of you guys to find that particular interview in which we can actually hear him say that.

Thank you for your help

Benz | 22 September 2013

As far as I know all the new Supercharger stations are equiped with 120kWh chargers.

PapaSmurf | 22 September 2013

There are not going to be many swap stations. Probably only one swap station for promo and testing purposes.

The costs for land and buildings (think Jiffy Lube size building) is just not realistic for Tesla to build these all over the place. It was purely a demo for other reasons. Tesla will be one to test whether anyone uses it enough to justify the expense, it will be hugely cash flow negative, then the concept will die.

We can forget about swap batteries being used for buffering on superchargers. It is financially illiterate. The grid doesn't need it. Wasted money for tesla to do it that way.

Pungoteague_Dave | 22 September 2013

+1 JamesM. Swap will never be rolled out - it is marketing optics and tax strategy only, with huge logistical and financial hurdles. The existing cars are not set up to have automated swap - would require modifications, and then the swap stations would have to be staffed like a jiffy lube, as the coolant has to be flushed, bled, bolts replaced, torque values verified (the battery is a stressed part of the chassis). The demo was PT Barnum stuff at its best - way more happened there than what you could see. The tech who did my battery swap said it is specified at 3 hours and actually requires 5 hours.

Benz | 22 September 2013

I think it's much too early to start talking about swap stations yet. But eventually, they will be there.

gill_sans | 22 September 2013

The tour guide at the Tesla factory tour in Fremont told me last week that Tesla Motors is currently working on logistics around pricing, who owns the battery, etc., and when that's all figured out then battery swap will go forward.

Benz | 23 September 2013


There you have it. Thanks for posting this info.

Benz | 23 September 2013

The new Superchargers at Gilroy (expansion) are all 120kWh chargers.

Benz | 24 September 2013

The next Supercharger to go live is Silverthorne, Colorado.

SamO | 24 September 2013

The swap system needs a nut-runner (robot), a space to hold the batteries and a place to park. Not a Jiffy Lube. A space the size of a single Supercharging slot and battery storage. Enough with the FUD.

Agree with Benz and Gill Sans that they are coming.

tes-s | 24 September 2013

Yes, the space the size of a supercharging stall, and the underground space under the entire 16-stall supercharger station to store the batteries and chargers.

Very doable, just no ROI at any swap price that would

5 mins and a swap for $x, or 45mins and a charge for free while you pee and stretch your legs.

I'd love to see them put one at Gilroy where there seems to be high demand to test the market.

Benz | 24 September 2013

They will do so when the time is right.

Brian H | 24 September 2013

The charges are to be local price of 15 gal of gas, and an additional fee if the swap is an upgrade and you decide to keep it.

Benz | 26 September 2013

That sounds reasonable, although most people will prefer a free fast Supercharge, I think.

tes-s | 26 September 2013

Has Tesla announced the location or timing of their first battery swap location?

I think that will be the only way to really assess whether people will make use of swap of supercharge.

Benz | 27 September 2013

First things first (Supercharger stations), and battery swaps isn't one of them.

Benz | 27 September 2013

I even think that the first battery swap station will not go live before 2015, but it might go live in 2015.

tes-s | 27 September 2013

There have been skeptics of battery swap, saying the 90-second-swap video was all smoke and mirrors.

Since Tesla spent all that money developing the automation, why not use it? They could put it on a popular route (heading from CA to Vegas?) and see if people would swap in one direction, and swap back in the other.

It could double as their battery replacement center for people that want to upgrade or replace their battery, or that need a warranty replacement. I have seen it reported that it takes 5 hours to do it manually - 90 seconds is a nice labor savings.

They could easily do that in 2014. If their swap program is active, they would. My guess is they never had plans to do anything beyond the announcement and demo. And if they did, my guess is they would be rethinking it based on their difficulty with supercharger rollout. Swap stations are a MUCH bigger challenge:
1. Capital
2. Zoning / Permitting
3. Power
4. Commercialization of the technology. Even assuming the demo was legit, taking it from demo to a commercial installation is a big step.
5. Paid on a use basis, vs Superchargers that are paid for in advance with the purchase of the car.
6. Competition. Superchargers are free; it is difficult to compete with free.

#5 is the biggest challenge. If nobody ever used a supercharger, Tesla would be ahead of the game with some savings on electricity. But if people don't use the swap stations, they have built costly infrastructure with no revenue stream.

Benz | 30 September 2013

We might indeed see a few swap stations on certain popular routes. But the priority lies surely with making progress on the layout of the Supercharger network. A small percentage of owners of a Tesla Model S will be interested in battery pack swapping. But on the other hand, even a small percentage can turn into huge numbers if the total number increases (of annual sales of Tesla EV's). That will happen when Generation 3 comes around (2017).

Jolinar | 30 September 2013

nick, why do you think so? 100,000 Model Ses would give Tesla $2,000 * 100,000 = $200,000,000 just for building supercharger stations.
I think you just come back to spread slander again :(

Benz | 30 September 2013

All future Tesla EV's will have the Supercharger capability (standard or as an option), just like the Model S. The cost of the Supercharger capability will be priced in the price of the EV. There will be no per-use charge for charging at the Supercharger stations. That's what is unique about the Supercharger stations: free forever.

Benz | 1 October 2013

Silverthorn (the second Supercharger station in Colorado) will go live on Thursday October 3rd, 2013.

Every time when a Supercharger station goes live, that means that the Supercharger network expands and reaches more and more people. That results in more and more sales of the Tesla Model S.

It's in the favour of Tesla Motors themselves to have the Supercharger network built out as planned (or even better: as soon as possible). A certain percentage of demand of the Tesla Model S depends on the progress of the Supercharger network.

Benz | 2 October 2013

The Supercharger network actually is a project on its own as well. It actually is a message to the world. Elon Musk wants to show us that there is another way/path that we can choose besides the way/path of fossil fuells. We now have to show the will to choose that way/path.

Benz | 2 October 2013

The Supercharger network is a pretty smart investment, much better than advertising.

Benz | 19 October 2013

This photo of the Tesla Supercharger Dashboard shows a lot of interesting information.