Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
Tesla plans to open its charging network to other EVs later this year (reuters.com)
229 points by Corrado 8 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 339 comments

Elon has a long history of just announcing things without details or a plan, so until this is fleshed out I wouldn't get that excited.

Thanks to EU regulations, all the superchargers in europe have both the tesla and CCS combo connectors at each stall. Telsa can allow CCS cars to charge with nothing but software. They actually had a bug earlier this year that allowed non-tesla cars to charge for free for a weekend.

In north america superchargers only have the telsa connector, which would mean either Tesla will need to offer an adaptor (which would likely have charge rate limits like their Chademo -> tesla adaptor) or add CCS to all their cabinets like they have done in europe (which will take a long time).

I suspect this is an offshoot of Norway standing firm on not offering tesla any grants or tax breaks to expand their charging network unless the chargers are publicly available. It wouldn't surprise me this starts in norway and only expands as regulations force them to open up.

I don’t think it’d take a long time. They could just replace like one stall with CCS. The most time consuming parts like permitting and power installation on premises and stuff already is done.

They could convert a decent portion of their network to have one stall with CCS in maybe a couple months.

But the Tesla power adapter is superior. Smaller, cheaper, simpler, and more user friendly than the chonky CCS or Chademo plus in the US. (The European plug isn’t so bad.)

If I could turn back the clock, I’d open up the Tesla plug and mandate all EV makers use it.

Making one stall CCS wouldn't be that hard, but without details we have no idea what this will look like or the scope of what Tesla intends to do. This could easily be EU only.

I love my model 3 sr+, but am under no illusions about the company failings. Elon shoots his mouth off on twitter all the time and it wouldn't surprise me at all this is the first any tesla staff have heard of this plan, which would mean no one has any idea what this looks like in practice.

Is it superior? I have seen people on YouTube wrapping the connectors in wet rags in order to cool it down enough to charge at maximum watts.

I've never used one, our Audi is CCS but we have never had to resort to any antics even in 110f weather.

Tesla has always offered the charging network and patents for anyone to use. The other automakers chose to go another way, unfortunately. I guess it makes sense from their standpoint; you don't want your product tied to a competitor. But it does seem a bit short sighted on their part.

That was a trojan horse offer. Tesla required anyone accepting the deal to give up their right to ever sue tesla over any patent infringement of any kind. Any automaker's legal department that allowed their boss to sign that would have needed to be immediately fired.

I specifically remember Elon stating that anyone could just use the technology without even informing Tesla, so I looked it up:


Indeed, there are no documents for executives to sign, but the patents aren't exactly fully free to use either: Tesla promised not to sue any company infringing on its patents as long as they're acting in "good faith," which obviously has a bunch of caveats (one being that you can't sue Tesla over any other patent related issues).

The end result is the same: a decent idea ruined by the lawyers.

> a decent idea ruined by the lawyers.

Or, more cynically, a publicity stunt, facilitated by lawyers. A lot of "look, you can use our patents!" things fall under this umbrella; they're devised in such a way that the company gets some publicity, but no-one can realistically use the patents.

So it was essentially a cross-licensing deal that allowed other automakers to use Tesla charging tech (did this include other Tesla-owned patents?), but the others would effectively have to license their entire patent portfolio to Tesla (can't sue is not too far from a blanket license to use).

I believe the issue always was they'd have to use Tesla's billing infrastructure as there are no screens etc on the superchargers. I hear you though.

The standards based version of that is https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_Charge_Point_Protocol I've no idea if Tesla use something similar.

Certificate built into the car.

Nope.. and every other vendor is having issues implementing it. The ID.4 from VW is awaiting a software update to enable plug and charge. Tesla's is proprietary.

Ford Mustang Mach-e has plug and charge. Some users are having good luck with it, but quite a few are experiencing issues. It mostly works at EA locations.

Exactly.. it's not the "no-brainer" it should be at all yet... and it's been this way for quite some time.

Hardware people can't do software.

Tesla is more of a software company than any other car maker, that's why they'll win.

Smart. Depending on the location they might be able to just add a new stall or two with ccs poets and call it a day, and migrate the rest of the stalls more gradually.

And of course, use CCS-compatible stalls for all new builds, of which there will probably be a great many as the EV charging station land grab kicks off.

Countries should have anticipated things and standardized EV charging 10+ years ago. It's not only the plug size, it's also enabling me + my neighbors chargers to communicate so we can optimize load on the electric grid. Standardize amperage so that my experience as a user isn't variable. Etc.

Europe standardized on CCS in 2014 with a 4 year transition period. That's why Tesla's in Europe use CCS rather than their own proprietary charger.

I think that was the right approach. Let some standards battle it out so that some bureaucrat isn't designing a high voltage connector. Once a clear winner was emerging legislate everyone adopt it and allow some time to transition.

No advantage to customers to optimize load to the grid unless customers pay less. But we can barely get smart meters rolled out, and the backlash (in social media and mainstream media) against real-time electricity prices was fierce. Annoying to me that so many seemed to completely dismiss the value of real-time electricity prices after the Texas snowstorm, including a lot of people who now talk about the need to decarbonize quickly and make sacrifices in the West.

The backlash was just stupid. They kept pumping out stories about how a poor family of four ended up with bills in the thousands, but never mentioned how that same family saved thousands over years with this contract...

It seems to me that a lot of what happened was politicized just so people can trash the republicans.

Do you think people saved the extra few dollars every month for years? Were they ever told/warned that one day they might need to pony up thousands of dollars? If there is a major weather emergency and you're already under a lot of stress trying to take care of your family, do you think the sound policy is to just let electricity go up to thousands of dollars while people are just trying to survive?

This is a poor policy for something that is an essential utility, this isn't just "republican bashing".

> This is a poor policy for something that is an essential utility

It's a very useful policy that can allow both buyers to save on costs, if they're careful; and utilities to decarbonise faster and introduce more renewables. For example, I know that a lot of people are taking out their natural gas heating in the UK and replace it with electric heaters that can be charged overnight when the electricity is cheap.

I would like more demand response in the US, it's a low hanging fruit. We need better protections in extreme circumstances, but that doesn't make it less useful overall.

Because most people expect a utility to always be available and affordable. The average American would much rather pay an extra $10-20/month for their entire life for electricity than once every 10 years have a bill for $4,000 because they didn't want to freeze to death when an unexpected cold front rolled through.

If that's their preference, they should have stayed on the normal rate plan, which offers exactly that. I think the issue is misleading or fraudulent salespeople talking people into buying something they don't understand, rather than the realtime rate offering itself.

Spot prices are not for everyone.

If you have an EV or if you plan other energy intensive activities smarter (like heating/cooling, washing+drying), you can save significantly more than 20 bucks a month.

This is not a unique Texas solution to this problem. In the UK for example, a lot of people take out their gas heating and replace it with electric ones that can be "charged" overnight at cheap prices.

It's the same think with credit cards and loans: they can absolutely wreck uneducated people, but they're not essentially bad if you know how to use them, they're quite advantageous.

You're arguing for normal operations, which nobody is disagreeing with. The sticking point you hand-waved away is what happens in an emergency. Telling someone "well you saved money over the last decade, SURPRISE!" isn't an acceptable situation for a utility.

I'm arguing for not trashing the idea of spot pricing because of one emergency. They could use better regulations for emergency situations, to prevent both customers and distributors going bankrupt, but making the case that spot pricing is bad because of what happened in Texas is short sighted.

When the situation became a state of emergency, they could have stopped free trading and just provide everything they can, leaving the accounting for later. Or just capping the price to a lower level.

In the meantime, spot pricing would be a very good thing to happen all across America, as I said - it's contributing massively to the de-carbonification of UK. Demand response would help reduce a lot of the spikes in usage, and make renewables integration easier.

> ”No advantage to customers to optimize load to the grid unless customers pay less.”

Well, of course you pay less. There’s a lot of value to distribution networks in being able to flatten peak loads, so they will be paying/reimbursing you in some way for that capability.

> ”the backlash (in social media and mainstream media) against real-time electricity prices was fierce.”

Grid electricity by nature is scarce at times and abundant at others. So not offering real-time pricing is a market distortion and may not produce the best economic or environmental outcomes.

That said, unpredictable bills can be a hardship for consumers that can’t store electricity or shift their demand. The correct approach is to let customers choose if they want real-time billing or a fixed rate.

> The correct approach is to let customers choose if they want real-time billing or a fixed rate.

Wasn't that the situation that led to a mess in Texas?

The mess in Texas was caused by not having enough reserve capacity to cover a period of exceptional demand, technical failures at power plants caused by extreme weather and under-investment, and not having sufficient interconnections with the rest of the North American grid which would have allowed more power to be imported.

These problems are independent of whether you're operating a market model or a monopoly model. The market model is common throughout Europe, but widespread power shortages don't really happen because there are many interconnections between countries, and mechanisms (such as payments made to reserve generators based on their availability) which prevent market failure.

How about the charger talks to your oven, dryer, and other appliances so that you don’t need to budget the sum of everything in terms of amperage. Instead, your car can pause charging while your clothes are drying.

This kind of stuff will only happen if standard protocols are agreed upon.

True. Pricey but can be cheaper than having to rewire everything.

What was the value of the real-time pricing in Texas? (Beyond rewarding incompetence)

Wealthy people could install solar + batteries to ensure they only use grid power in the cheapest of times.

Poor people can be told they'll save hundreds of dollars on their electricity bill but often don't realize it means they need to turn off the AC when its hottest and turn off the heat when its coldest.

Right. I get the social equality aspects of the argument, but charging the fully burdened price for energy (i.e. which includes time of use) seems like a good way to get people to conserve smartly instead of wasting resources. It does make sense to turn down the A/C a bit when the grid is stressed, but there's literally no incentive to do so without some sort of realtime pricing. In fact, it makes MORE sense from an individual standpoint to turn it up as strong as it can be so if the power does go out, your house will stay cool a bit longer. That, collectively, increases the probability of the grid going out. It's a collective action problem, and without some sort of incentive to conserve use and greatest demand, it increases costs, emissions, and fragility of the grid.

It's good that wealthy people install solar and batteries to only use grid power in the cheapest of times. We literally want to incentivize wealth being put to productive use (in this case, reducing stress on the grid and--in the case of solar especially--emissions). That means more resources for others.

Of course usage policy is good. In Ontario, we have 3 tariffs, high demand, average demand, low demand. And yes, I do adjust my electricity usage based on that. But this is standard, this doesn't change every week and it surely does not go up to thousands of dollars in the middle of a climate emergency. You can reap the benefits of having higher fee during higher demand periods without having the insanity of letting the market decide the price without any cap.

You missed the part where all ratepayers get to pay off bonds for decades for a few days of incompetence-fueled crisis.

> * It's not only the plug size, it's also enabling me + my neighbors chargers to communicate so we can optimize load on the electric grid.*

It means you can use a 30-50% smaller amount of solar, wind, transmission, and batteries, roughly, enabling cheaper energy, lower embodied emissions, and a faster energy transition (meaning reduced overall emissions). (And this applies to things like nuclear, too.)

If they'd have done that, we'd have missed out on 10+ years of improvements. Now seems like a fine time to standardize, especially since adaptors are feasible.

That’s true. The standard 10 years ago was the Chademo plug. Have any of you ever used it? It is HUGE. It’s like lifting up and plugging in an entire vacuum cleaner into the front of your car. The unveiling of Tesla’s supercharger plug 9 years ago was a game changer, and no one has yet equaled it.

It's true it was the standard on early Japanese electric stuff (the Leaf mainly), but it's a bit of an exaggeration to say Chademo was some kind of industry standard 10 years ago. Chademo itself is a creation of Japanese auto-makers plus Panasonic/TEPCO. The J1772 as well as of course Tesla's connector have been far, far more common sights in North America over the last 10 years. Western auto-makers have almost completely ignored Chademo altogether.

CCS is a bit larger a connector but not meaningfully so and is just as capable as the Tesla connector feature wise really - can support 350kw DC fast charging and automated payments etc. I'd be pretty happy if Tesla switched the cars over to a standard design like they've done on the Euro cars, assuming reasonable adapters were offered to existing owners.

A group of Tesla home chargers will do that, they're wired together, so a parking lot situation.

> ”Thanks to EU regulations, all the superchargers in europe have both the tesla and CCS combo connectors at each stall.”

In fact, the newer “V3” Superchargers only have CCS connectors.

And the “Tesla Connector” is not the Tesla connector in Europe, but Type 2 connection modified. Fully compatible with Type 2 charging.

It's compatible one way - the cars (MS/MX) use a Type2 connector for AC charging (conforming to the widely spread standard) and DC charging ("DC-Mid" "standard", what's used on old V1/V2 Superchargers). This allows the cars to use Type2 to charge on any AC charger. But the DC-Mid solution is not found on any other EV, so while the connector is mechanically standardized, no other car except Teslas can charge on non-CCS-retrofitted Superchargers. Thankfully, there are only very few of those left in all of Europe - exactly one in Germany (Wiesbaden), iirc 2-3 more elsewhere, all others are either CCS-retrofitted or CCS-only V3s.

Wandering off topic (what an epic start, TIL, thanks Norway!), but I gotta say it feels very weird to me having AC charging be the standard. It feels a lot more elegant to me to put a lot of the complexity on the charging station rather than in the vehicle.

And if you have, for example, a solar powered charge station, now your charge station needs a big inverter to make AC, which the car then goes about turning back into DC.

ac charging “infrastructure” is merely a plug + a fancy breaker switch. It’s cheap and simple. ac is abundant, so adding a plug is easy. Dc on the other hand requires lots of hardware.

This. Cheap infrastructure spurs adoption more than the added cost to the EV. It also adds tremendous flexibility to the EV itself allowing it to charge off existing infrastructure not intended for EVs.

But you can easily do DC charging now.

CCS is made for DC charging, but can fallback to Type 2 AC.

All EVs in Europe are CCS

The Nissan Leaf does not use CCS DC fast charging, it uses CHAdeMO, like they do in the US. But it's pretty much the only EV that uses it in the US.


"Le temps de recharge rapide indiqué nécessite l’utilisation d’une borne de recharge rapide équipée d’un câble de recharge CHAdeMO."

Also consider that only a fraction of US Leafs can do CHAdeMO. It was not a standard option.

IMO Nissan did a lot to spur the adoption of EVs with their glorified golf cart but they've really squandered any mind share or goodwill they gained.

I saw an older Model S (still with "teslamotors.com" licence plate holder) charging at the new V3 supercharger, and it had to use an adapter. CCS FTW.

> Elon has a long history of just announcing things without details or a plan, so until this is fleshed out I wouldn't get that excited.

It's been known in Norway for a little while, since Tesla applied for some grants or something only available for publicly usable chargers. So it's not just something promised, it's been acted upon already

Edit: https://electrek.co/2021/06/24/tesla-confirms-plan-open-supe...

Electrek is interpreting a local subsidy agreement as though it were national law. Tesla can comply with this requirement simply by inviting a third party to provide chargers for non-Tesla vehicles on the site. They already have this at the Nebbenes site. See https://www.rb.no/nyheter/elbil/bil/apnet-verdens-storste-la... (you can use Google Translate just like Electrek did).

If this article is representative of Electrek's journalism I think everyone should take their articles with several pinches of salt.

For sure, but their hand was forced in Norway (well done) and european superchargers already have CCS plugs. Is this coming EU wide? World-wide? If world, how will tesla handle ~10,000 north american supercharger cabinets not having CCS plugs? How will they handle the many California and EU regs that public chargers must display the amount of power dispensed and the price since superchargers don't have screens?

The devil is in the details of both scope and execution, so until tesla clarifies the specifics I'm going to believe this is Norway only and Elon was angling for some good press without having to actually do anything tesla was already committed to doing.

Funding secured.

Just to put it on the record because so many people seem to be getting this wrong. Telsa's connector was not first, but its power delivery capabilities were better at the time.

The Roadster (2008) used a different connector than the Model S (2012) and is completely incompatible. JS1772 (2009) was already being adopted as a standard by cars like the Nissan Leaf (2010) before Tesla's current connector was being used.

Tesla's Supercharger network at the launch of the Model S was a total of 6 chargers: https://web.archive.org/web/20121124081536/http://www.teslam... . So the initial infrastructure investment was not that significant.

Further reading into that article though you can see the Superchargers were capable of delivering 90kW. JS1772 cars were limited to ~20kW L2 charging at the time which is why Chademo (2010-ish) connectors were included for faster charging on earlier EVs. CCS (2013) would become the unifying replacement that added faster charging to JS1772.

More on topic, the rest of the industry and world has moved on and standardized to CCS. No one should start using Tesla's connector on their cars now. But making an adapter to use Tesla chargers on a CCS car could make sense. But having yet another thing to lug around in the car won't be ideal. The obvious logical choice is for Tesla to start retrofitting Superchargers with CCS now that it's open and eventually ween Tesla owners into using adapters that Tesla already makes.

> The obvious logical choice is for Tesla to start retrofitting Superchargers with CCS now that it's open and eventually ween Tesla owners into using adapters that Tesla already makes.

European superchargers already offer CCS ports. Tesla started adding them in 2018 for their Model 3, which also features CCS (at least in Europe).

> All V2 Superchargers in Europe feature dual-cable posts to accommodate both DC Type 2 and CCS Combo 2 charge-ports. European V3 Superchargers feature single-cable CCS technology, which are directly compatible with all Model 3 vehicles. Model S and Model X vehicles in region can access V3 Superchargers with a CCS Combo 2 adapter.


And here is another post from 2018 showing one of the first pictures of a supercharger with CCS: https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-supercharger-dual-charge-ccs...

Tesla has invested over $600 million in their Supercharger network globally [1], and should be compensated if legacy automakers want access to it for their customers. If they don't desire access to it, they can foot the bill themselves. No sense in giving a free ride to apathetic automakers who had to be dragged to build EVs. If governments want to cut a check to open up access, compensating Tesla for their capex costs, that's fine too.

[1] https://supercharge.info/map

Tesla would be compensated, that's why you pay when you charge. Adding CSS to their chargers only financially benefits them by increasing their customer base. By opening the charging standard instead of licensing it they have also taken the morally higher ground by making it possible for anyone to charge their eventually.

Switching over to CCS is already happening in Europe because of regulation. The Model 3 is sold with CCS instead of the Telsa connector as part of that: https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/support/supercharging I would not be surprised to see similar legislation here in the US, but we are typically massively behind on things like that. And it would likely be done as it is in the EU, new chargers would be required to have the standard connector. Retrofitting old ones is optional.

The question is what they see as their business model. Part of the Tesla pitch to buy a car is access to the big Tesla super charger network.

Competing on charging networks is tough. The charging cost is determined in large parts by energy cost and rent for the space. Customers have some ease-of-use effect to get a membership at a large network, but brand reliance is low. Thus there is little to gain, but cars from all sorts of vendors blocking Tesla's chargers isn't good for the exclusivity of their brand.

I think there is a conflict of interest:

- Tesla obviously wants to have a exclusive network to boost their car sales. Vender lock in greatly helps them.

- The Government / The public want ONE charging network which can be used by anybody regardless of their car brand. In particular you don't want vendor lock in for something basic such as access to individual transportation. (Remember Tesla could easily decide that only "Tesla approved power sources" are allowed to charge your car)

I think it's inevitable that charging becomes a comodity such as fuel. Ad-hoc without registration / app download (or at most one on a national level).

> - The Government / The public want ONE charging network which can be used by anybody

While I agree with your overall point a little nitpicking:

Many certainly don't want ONE network, but compatible competing networks. (Compatible regarding plugs etc. and compatible regarding payment registration)

In concur.

Basically like gas stations. Different brands but the same products.

Maybe loyalty programs for customers, special conditions for companies etc.

I wonder if they'll charge different rates for Tesla / non-Tesla charging. Could still incentivize owning a Tesla while giving other EV users range flexibility (for a price).

The way it is done at Tesla stations at the moment in Norway is that a third party like Fortum provides chargers for non-Tesla vehicles and they have their own pricing and payment system. The Tesla charging stalls at the site are still only used by Tesla vehicles.

Since they voluntarily opened their chargers it's pretty obvious their business model is not exclusivity. Adding other cars doesn't not impinge access to superchargers for Tesla owners other than potentially more congestion.

Yes, what's good for society and consumers might not be good for one particular company. It should still be mandated.

CCS or not is not the question. You can still limit it with software.

Eventually it makes sense probably but as of now in the US, many people still recommend Tesla if you are doing road-trips. Its still a competitive advantage.

Eventually they will open it up and make money, but reality is that fast charging is a losing business strategy right now. Tons of money in, no money out. Having it as marketing and competitive advantage right now is more valuable by far then the small amount they money they would make by opening it up.

It will be years before they open it up in the US is my guess. Sooner in Europe, but not because of regulation but rather because of the competitive advantage not being as relevant and attempting to get higher utilization.

I think the market forces point in the opposite direction. With the big regions EU and China having standardized charging, they each created a market for different open charging networks to compete in.

In e.g. Germany Teslas are <10% of the new EVs sold YTD, I doubt it would make much sense for Tesla trying to maintain a Tesla-only network there, as they have to support the standardized connector and communication protocol anyway. They can only gain by opening up their charging network there.

China is far more un-standardized then the US.

In the US you have Tesla and CCS. CHAdeMO still exists but it will vanish soon, as almost no new car uses it.

I don’t see why automakers should pay up. They don’t pay oil companies to allow their customers to buy their gas, either.

It’s the customers who they should expect money from.

> and should be compensated if legacy automakers want access to it for their customers

The way Tesla will get "compensated" is that users will pay for the electricity they use. This is straightforward business, not a "free ride".

Didn't Tesla already receive a hefty amount of government subsidies? Seems like the public already wrote that check to Tesla.

Looks like they've received a total of $2.5B in subsidies and $466M in loans[0]. Feel free to compare that to GM with $8B subsidies and $50B in loans[1] or Ford with $4.3B in subsidies and $33B in loans[2].

0: https://subsidytracker.goodjobsfirst.org/prog.php?parent=tes...

1: https://subsidytracker.goodjobsfirst.org/prog.php?parent=gen...

2: https://subsidytracker.goodjobsfirst.org/prog.php?parent=for...

The subsidy per vehicle manufactured would probably be a better comparison.

Per EV manufactured, sure.

These weren't all--or even mostly--EV subsidies.

In a world with climate change, there's no reason to ever subsidize ICE vehicles. So we can count those as a total waste of money.

Why is that comparison relevant?

VW has invested $2 billion in Electrify America [1].

With every manufacturer accelerating their EV rollouts, there will soon be more CCS EVSEs than superchargers. This move isn't about giving non-Teslas access to superchargers, it's about giving Teslas access to what very soon will be the majority of EVSEs.

It also about tax incentives: the government isn't going to support a proprietary standard.

[1] https://www.electrifyamerica.com/our-plan/

VW did not invest that money. That was the penalty they had to pay from Dieselgate [1]. The network is now seeking $1 billion in capital investment [2]. DC fast charging isn't profitable due to utility demand charges (for drawing 100-300kw on demand), so networks like EA will likely eventually fail being unable to obtain capital financing [3]. Tesla runs Superchargers as a cost center, and only needs them to break even, as their business is selling vehicles.

TLDR Tesla sells an ecosystem. They are the Apple of EVs.

[1] https://www.cnbc.com/2019/05/10/vws-2-billion-penalty-for-di...

[2] https://electrek.co/2021/07/07/electrify-america-rumored-bil...

[3] https://www.utilitydive.com/news/nearly-all-high-voltage-ev-...

>They are the Apple of EVs.

Right down to the atrocious repair policies.

Say what you will, the products command a premium, and both Apple and Tesla have valuations based off of brand value and consumer demand. Consumers can vote with their wallets, and they have.

The Tesla adapter is superior in almost every way to CCS. IMHO, everyone should use it. The CCS plug, particularly the US variant, is considerably worse from a usability perspective. (It’s also more complicated and heavy and therefore more expensive to make.)

Standardizing on the US CCS plug would be a mistake that would cement a disadvantage for EVs. If we’re going to insist on a standard plug, I’d prefer the Tesla plug but even the European CCS plug wouldn’t be so bad. Look at the size difference, and tell me that lifting a much heavier plug won’t have a usability impact especially for people with a small frame or physical disability.

I'm not sure I understand that. The Tesla plug is 5 pin - as is CCS.

In terms of usability, CCS just plugs in. I've not used a Tesla plug, but I'm curious as to how that could be cheaper.

CCS doesn't weigh that much - it's a plastic shell around metal pins. The cable weighs a fair bit - but isn't that the same of any rugged cable?

It’s cheaper because it’s much smaller and topologically simpler. CCS is built like a gas nozzle with a separate handle and trigger. Tesla plug is just a smooth plug.

It also seems to frequently get stuck... I've yet to hear that happening with CCS. Lighter but less reliable != better:


“Frequently”? No. Also, all fast charging plugs have an electronic interlock, and it’s for safety reasons (to prevent flash from a manual disconnect in the middle of charging). So the problem you describe happens for other vehicles occasionally, like eTron and i3 (after a quick google).

Tesla vehicles are MUCH more common in the US and have had access to much better fast charging for a lot longer, so you’re a victim of sample bias.

I've been following tesla for years. There are people complaining of their cable getting stuck on the regular on reddit and other forums, so yes 'frequently'.

I just did a google search, I have yet to find an i3 or etron that was stuck at a charging station overnight and required a tech to get it unlocked, but maybe I'm using the wrong term. Feel free to link to the stories?

Everything I've seen using CCS, "stuck" is because someone forgot to push the trigger twice to unlock both the car and charger side.

Tesla charge ports are latched onto by the car, so when they get stuck it's because the car won't let go. You can access a manual release from within the trunk but it is by no means easy, convenient, or well-known.

That being said, I've had this happen exactly once 3 years ago. All the complaints I've seen are around the 2018 time frame which is when I had issues so I wonder if it was a software issue with the Model 3 that's since been resolved.

> Everything I've seen using CCS, "stuck" is because someone forgot to push the trigger twice to unlock both the car and charger side.

Trigger? With CCS there's usually a button which is just one side of a lever with a latch at the other end. It's purely mechanical and you have to hold it down to release.

Go listen to the experience reports from the insideev podcast. Yes the Tesla charger can get stuck, but overall the quality and reliability is far better then the competition.

They report far more problems with the CCS plugs.

The reason you hear more about Tesla issue is because there are far more Teslas and far more superchargers in the US.

How much power can today's CCS and Tesla chargers deliver?

Tesla is currently at 250kw with the v3 superchargers, but it's been said they can handle more and are about to be software upgraded to 300kw. A v2 supercharger is capable of 150kw.

Electrify America's are supposedly capable of 350kw but there isn't really an EV in existence yet that can hit it.

Can't the Ioniq 5 take 350KW? The car can be purchased today in Korea, I see many in the roads. Coming to the US in the falls.

Ionic 5 peaks at about 230 kW. Getting that much power in does require using high voltage, like the 350 kW EA cabinets.

The problem probably lies not with the car's capabilities but the charger not providing 800V?

EA and Ionity chargers are capable of up to 1000V. It’s a question of battery size. You can only safely stuff so much power into each cell along with cooling limitations. 230 kW is nothing to sneeze at and ionic 5 sustains >200 kW longer than model 3

.. yet the model 3 still charges faster due to the efficiencies of a smaller pack.

The Porsche Taycan does hit 350kw, assuming the battery is preconditioned. I charged one at an EA station last month.

Taycan max is 270 kW. It does require using the 350 kW cabinet, but it can't max it out.

Huh. The GUI must have lied to me. Annoying.

Searching for electric bus chargers shows several in use in Europe at 300-500kW.

Fair enough, I was considering personal transit. These are like the equivalent of the "megacharger" that's coming for the Tesla Semi.

Right, and Tesla does charge their Semi prototypes with an adapter that uses a few Supercharger plugs at once.

Yup.. I think its up to like 3-4 stalls' connectors used now.. crazy :)

Kind of makes sense, actually. They already mass produce the stalls and the Supercharger network already exists. A Megawatt-level plug would be pretty hefty, but just using multiple Supercharger plugs is straightforward.

I still see them placing dedicated megachargers along the pilot routes for the companies that are taking delivery initially as well as at their distribution locations, as they sell even more consumer Tesla's it won't be cool to have trucks taking up half the stalls for sure, but in the beginning no problem.

CCS can deliver 350kW.

Tesla Superchargers are currently 250kW. There are rumors about a higher output connection for the semi trucks but it is unsure if that would be a different connector or not.

> The obvious logical choice is for Tesla to start retrofitting Superchargers with CCS now that it's open and eventually ween Tesla owners into using adapters that Tesla already makes.

I disagree. I already use an adapter for L2 charging, on the rare occasion that I am at one place long enough for it to be worth it (work). I use the super chargers almost exclusively. I don’t want to use an adapter, that’s a poor experience. If others want to use the network, let them adapt.

I should have clarified that new Telsas should use CCS and existing Tesla owners would "eventually" need to use an adapter. That's the weening I was talking about. Start adding CSS to all the Superchargers. Once a significant build out is completely start selling new Teslas with CSS and an adapter for any older Superchargers that don't get retrofitted. 2-5yrs later new chargers can only have CCS.

The burden of the adapter being put on the larger market is just not going to happen. If Tesla wants to stay relevant as more automakers enter the EV market they need to adapt.

Tesla missed their chance with Model 3. EU regs forced them to support CCS in 2017. Existing Model S owners got a small adaptor and European Model 3 has always been native CCS. The supercharger cabinets have both tesla and CCS connectors. Tesla could have done the same thing in north america and chose not to.

I mostly agree with you. One of the best results of Tesla opening up its supercharger network would be encouraging other EV providers to use the much better Tesla style plug and everyone ending up standardizing on it. but I just don’t think that’ll happen.

(In the US) Tesla uses a proprietary standard. Every other EV manufacturer uses CCS for high-speed charging. (Chademo was dropped.)

The Tesla Supercharger network is just like Betamax: Tesla has a good first mover advantage, just like Sony did. But once every EV sold has a CCS connector, it's not going to make sense to buy a Tesla that can only charge at Tesla's proprietary charging network.

Once VHS was on the scene, the Betamax format struggled. And just like Betamax, there will be people who argue until they're blue in the face that Tesla's charger is better than CCS.

(Betamax was, in practice worse than VHS. It was more expensive, and because the tapes were physically smaller, feature length films used slower tape speeds, and thus had lower picture quality. Even the supposed better picture quality of Betamax was too small to notice.)

That’s a bit like saying everyone will drop IPhone once USB-C is standard on other phones. It just doesn’t work like that, cars are a status symbol for a lot of people where as VCRs are pure functionality, there will be more to the decision making process than just “other charging networks catching up”.

I get your analogy but it’s not a good one

You don't usually use other people's chargers to charge your phone. Compatibility between EV chargers would be very useful though: I've had the experience of having to carefully plan a Tesla road trip from the Bay Area to LA around the locations and distances between Tesla Supercharging stations. I can see how having, at the very least, a converter to access other charging stations would be convenient.

My friend is able to use other charging networks on their model3. I think that there is an adaptor

I think most of the discussion here is about the other way around— allowing non-Tesla vehicles access to the Superchargers.

In this case the Op was talking about arranging around super charger stations. But yeah.

The adapter is for slower charging, not CCS.

Looks like the CCS adaptor can do 350kw https://youtu.be/ZwW3UBEgyew

No, there's a Chademo adapter for Teslas in NA. I use it every week.

I charge my phones at friend's houses or in their cars all the time, though? And I don't usually keep a spare cord with me.

Teslas come standard with an adapter that allows you to plug in everywhere?

I know, because my home charger isn’t a Tesla one and yet I have use it every day on a Tesla without issue…

You can only use your adapter at slow chargers.

You can not use your adapter at high speed CCS chargers.

You can buy such chargers already and in future Tesla could easily offer official once. There is no issue in principle with fast charging a Tesla with a CCS charger.

I see. I’ve never dealt with off-brand fast chargers.

In fairness they did say the Tesla Supercharger network rather than Tesla as a brand, so it’s more like suggesting “even Apple will replace Lightning with USB-C” rather than “iPhones will go away because of USB-C”.

Tesla will not survive the weight of its stock price if the only buyers are ones who are purchasing it for the status symbol. They NEED to be part of and setting the standards.

If Apple's stock had been priced at hitting android levels of market penetration and they hit the plateau they're currently on, their board would all have been fired and the vultures would be circling.

Porsche, BMW and Land Rover would like to have a word with you.

Tesla's market cap is $658B. The COMBINED market cap of VW (Porsche parent), BMW, and Tata Motors (Land Rover parent) is roughly $233B. You are comparing Apples and Blue Whales.

Market cap has nothing to do with either sales volume or revenue. VW sells a magnitude greater number of cars than Tesla.

I actually think you proved his point because neither iPhone or Tesla are status symbols anymore. I see so many of them they are becoming mundane. I own an iPhone and could care less about the next iteration, I'll replace my iPhone when needed.

The next model of iPhone or Tesla no longer excite me, they are just a new standard of electric car, I'm not impressed by anyone who owns either like I would be if I saw a McLaren or something roll up. Well, not that I'm impressed per say, but I'm not turning heads for a Tesla like back when they first came out, but I'll always check out a super car.

I charge my iPhone exclusively with a Qi charger that is older than the USB-C spec.

Teslas are a status symbol, but they sell in volume because they also have a usable network. Given enough competitive market pressure, front-runners can and will make changes.

I don't think you can compare the network effect of people with VCRs and charging networks. Each person only needs 1 VCR, in their own home, and it's not that expensive to switch to the dominant format.

Charging on the other hand has a huge compounding network effect. Your electric car is only as good as the density of its network, and right now Tesla has a huge lead. I'd wager that the supercharger standard isn't going anywhere.

I'd also add that we already have two mutually compatible fuels for cars: diesel and petrol. In practice, every petrol station simply supports both fuels.

> Charging on the other hand has a huge compounding network effect. Your electric car is only as good as the density of its network, and right now Tesla has a huge lead. I'd wager that the supercharger standard isn't going anywhere.

I just wanna clarify something: that's not what the network effect is.

The network effect is defined as "the phenomenon by which the value or utility a user derives from a good or service depends on the number of users of compatible products."


For example, if each Tesla owner served as a charging station for every other owner, that would constitute a network effect, since the value/utility of a Tesla vehicle would increase with each additional owner.

What you're describing is just a traditional moat or barrier of entry. The Tesla supercharger network is a strong competitive advantage because it makes their product more viable for people. But that advantage isn't increased or decreased based on the number of Tesla owners out there. And that advantage certainly doesn't "compound" in any meaningful way that I can see.

I would think it'd be very hard for Betamax adopters to switch their machine and their collection to VHS, especially if they lived in an area where there was mostly Betamax retailers.

>> Charging on the other hand has a huge compounding network effect. Your electric car is only as good as the density of its network, and right now Tesla has a huge lead. I'd wager that the supercharger standard isn't going anywhere.

Tesla may have the largest network, but since all the other networks are compatible it's actually harder to find a Tesla charger than a standard one. The adapter situation for charging a Telsa on a standard plug isn't all that great either, it's hit or miss.

> Your electric car is only as good as the density of its network

Presumably this is somewhat true for marketing and removing obstacles for potential EV buyers, and in practical terms, for long trips. But short of those long trips, the network is not a big factor in the quality or usability of the EV.

having a vehicle that is not capable of long distance trips is a no go for everyone who can't afford more than one car that being said, owning a cheap(but good quality) short range ev for every family member and a regular huge car for long trips is the best way to go

https://www.aptera.us/ this might be it, though it can be ordered with 1000miles range, so not necessarily short range

Wow! I was excited about these folks way back. They completely shuttered in 2011. I'm glad to see them back, though by now I've got on the Tesla bandwagon.

> diesel and petrol. In practice, every petrol station simply supports both fuels.

In the US they definitely do not :-)

The US is a bit large. Where I’m from in the US of A they have them at every petrol station ;-)

Conversely, when I worked at a gasoline-only gas station, I had the location of the nearest diesel providing ones memorized for those who asked.

VHS also wins for network effect. Betamax doesn't allow rental tape but VHS allows.

There are adapters from the NA Tesla standard to CCS. See https://www.setec-power.com/ccs-adapter/

That said, as a Model X owner, I've never felt the need to seek out other charging in almost 4 years of ownership, and roughly 10k miles road-tripping.

So you've never needed to use another network (good for you) but advocate for an adapter that works with only about half the other chargers out there... Google compatibility issues with that ;-)

I just scanned the thread for it on the tesalmotorsclub forums. My (admittedly quick) reading is that it had lots of f/w glitches early, and that there are charging limits imposed by 3/Y and newer S/X which lead to the glitchy reputation. And that's multiplied by the general unreliability of non-Tesla chargers, so that makes things even worse.

That said, I have an older Model X where there is apparently no artificially imposed limit. If Tesla chargers become much more occupied due to non-Tesla's using them, I might pick up one of these adapters for my next road trip.

He’s stating facts. He’s not advocating.

I own a Tesla, I don't know why I should care about other charging stations. Tesla's supercharger network is more than enough for road trips and in city I live in I just charge at home. Not sure why Tesla should be worried about their connector format "losing" to competition.

Because not everyone can charge at home and in cities people will rely on curbside charging, for which Tesla has no answer.

The question will be: how big is the market of people who can afford a Tesla, but live in an apartment building with no possibilty to install a charger in the garage.

I don't think it's a live threatening issue for Tesla, but at some point they will need to solve it. I guess adapters will do.

Overnight charging will likely be a type 2 connector, and that's a small adapter that fits in a pocket, and is easy to keep in the center console when needed. Edit: this adapter already ships with every Tesla in the charger bag.

A lot of places also put both type2 and tesla chargers right next to each other. The expense with chargers is mostly running the wires to the parking spots, the end points are cheap in comparison.

There are already adapters for J1772 to Tesla, and the Teslas sold in Europe already have CCS ports because the EU mandated this. IMO it's not as big of a problem as people imagine.

What likely will end up happening, long term, is that Tesla will switch to CCS plugs in the US as well, and retrofit their older cars.

> Because not everyone can charge at home and in cities people will rely on curbside charging, for which Tesla has no answer.

Sorry, totally disagree that EVs (electric only, not hybrids) will be viable for more than a teeny percentage of apartment dwellers if their building doesn't support charging. Curbside charging just won't cut it for most people, for the simple fact that the most common time when people want to charge their cars at night, when the car is in their garage.

Assumption: everyone has a garage!

I was thinking of an apartment building garage in that statement, but all of my reasoning goes the same for an apartment building parking lot.

Mandatory parking area is not that excessive as it is inside the USoA all over the world. Those mandatory parking area laws are on the mayor contributors to urban sprawl (where every family needs a 2 car garage and therefore has one).

Why? I have friends who can’t charge at home, and just charge at superchargers. Not ideal, but they seem fine with it. It’s not like the cars take that long to charge, and their range is such that you only need to do that maybe once a week with a normal commute.

If the range of the car is 500km, in Europe most people would probably charge once or twice a week.

But I agree, we need chargers in buildings parking garage to make this work.

Because they can’t sell their cars in locations where they haven’t built out a supercharger network, which is still most of the world. The more interoperable standard will win there. Starting a supercharging station worldwide is very different from doing it in a few first world countries.

> Because they can’t sell their cars in locations where they haven’t built out a supercharger network

If they start selling their cars in a certain country they just build a few superchargers. It's not that hard.

They even have a couple in the middle of Kazakhstan for some reason.

> They even have a couple in the middle of Kazakhstan for some reason.

Vocal outreach by a Tesla fan (have met, awesome person).


Do a lot of $50,000+ cars get sold in third world countries? I'm not sure those markets are a priority for Tesla.

The district in India where my grandmother was from was the poorest in that state, and one of the poorest in India overall. In the span of the past 20 years (one generational transition), that district has transformed into one of the more affluent districts in the state, as well as the biggest car market in the country, especially for luxury cars such as BMW, Mercedes, Jeep and Range Rover.

And also 0.1% of Indians or Africans is still 1 million potential customers or 300k cars sold potentially. Or $15B each market. So yeah, it makes sense to pay attention to the third world too.

The UK has a Tesla charging network, but it's very sparse in places [1] - if you're in Peterborough the nearest Tesla charger is 40 minutes drive away. A bunch of other networks have chargers that are much closer.

I suppose you could argue the UK is a third world country, of course :)

[1] https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/trips

The UK is also tiny. You don't need superchargers in every neighborhood, because people charge the cars at home. There are ample superchargers to get you anywhere in the UK you would want to go.

Would seem that way, but yeah. A car affordable to 10% of a 100 million people and 1% of a billion people is the same market size.

In those countries they're using the CCS combo port. Usually because they're mandated to.

Not everyone can charge at home, and access to charging infrastructure is a selling point for those people.

Most folks I know without home charging charge at Superchargers at grocery stores (Meijer grocery stores, specifically, who have an arrangement with Tesla for colocating Supercharge stations, although I've also seen Tesla 72kw urban chargers at higher end groceries in urban areas such as Chicago). Their vehicle is charged back up before their ~weekly grocery shopping trip is complete, and in some cases their employer has installed a J1772 charging station for them (and provides free electricity) as a perk. Those J1772 stations are very reasonably priced compared to a DC fast charger.

As long as Tesla can continue to colocate fast chargers at places urban dwellers must frequent (which is likely based on their experience and the brand value), it's a non issue imho. I've seen lots of Electrify America charging stations, but there might as well be tumbleweeds rolling through with how rare it is to see someone charging at one.

Furthermore, an inexpensive adapter makes the issue moot both for Tesla owners and owners of other EVs.

Honestly, I suspect that most businesses like restaurants and other attractions that anyone would want to stop on during a long drive will have a high-speed charger in the parking lot.

When that happens, I doubt that it will be any format other than CCS. I also bet Tesla owners will grumble that they need to use an adapter when no one else has to.

In the EU, Tesla cars (even cars built and shipped from the US) and Tesla superchargers use CCS.

It seems like Tesla is adding CCS ports, at least to their European chargers.[0] There are also adapters to go the other way.[1] I am sure at some point Tesla might just switch over to CCS unless there is something better about the Tesla connection. I don't really know enough about this to comment on the benefits of either.

[0] https://electrek.co/2018/11/14/tesla-model-3-ccs-2-plug-euro... [1]https://www.tesla.com/sites/default/files/CCS/CCS_Combo_2_Ad...

Isn’t the CCS connector much larger than the Tesla one? If there are no big inherent advantages to it, I’m not sure why Tesla should switch in the US?

If the CCS network becomes big enough that it puts Tesla owners at a major disadvantage, then it's possible. Maybe I shouldn't say I'm sure....the Tesla network already has a major headstart so it might continue it's dominance.

In Norway, Tesla has since introducing the Model 3, added dual cables, where you can charge either your old style plug or your CCS plug Tesla. At all of their supercharging stations, while also expanding their network at a rapid pace.

I definitely do not get that what they have already done once, can't be repeated elsewhere.

My impression when it comes to fast chargers are that the most expensive parts of setting them up, is getting the power infrastructure from the grid to the station. Zoning might also be something that is time consuming. But neither of these have any impact on the plug to the car.

So maybe the current US Tesla charger network is Betamax, but retrofitting it to do both VHS and Betamax shouldn't be that hard, and they've done it once already, somewhere else. So I don't see the problem.

It's not really apples to apples since you can get adapters for these chargers.

When you mostly charge at home and mostly use supercharger on the roads its really no issue. If your really go to a place where there is no Supercharger and only a CCS, adopters exists and Tesla could easly sell them.

Btw, what you miss is that other networks can adopt the Tesla charger. EVGo for example will have many of Tesla Proprietary charger on their stations.

I'm trying to appreciate your analogy, but perhaps Tesla charges are better than the more open version unlike Betamax.

The Tesla charger is more elegant than CCS, although I anticipate the following problems:

1: With CCS, the physically larger connector communicates to the customer that it's a high-speed charger. A lot of people don't understand the difference between slow and fast charging. (You can even see it in this thread where people don't know that they can't plug their Tesla into a CCS charger.)

2: CCS has bigger pins, which means it can carry higher amperage. There's no way to work around that situation with the Tesla connector.

(The bigger pin difference also, ironically, boosts the VHS vs. Betamax analogy. Betamax's biggest problem was that the tapes were physically too small, thus cutting either playback time or picture quality.)

Better and cheaper, since it’s smaller than the CCS plug.

Unlike Betamax, the Tesla plug is cheaper to make than the Chademo or CCS plugs.

Tesla seems to be testing a CCS adapter. With such a thing, which doesn't seen like high barrier, a Tesla would be able to use both networks.

Is CCS just a physical standard? If so, can I buy a smart adapter?

you can adapter these things though so it isn’t like betamax

You may not be aware, but you've stumbled into a bitterly fought political battle with that analogy.

Some extreme free-market supporters dont like anyone claiming the better item lost out in the open market, and will go to great lengths to discredit those claims. But be aware they're not actually experts in whatever field they're wading into, they just know what the conclusion that supports their employers is and argue for that.

So, they take the side of "VHS was better than Betamax", "Climate change isn't real" "Qwerty is better than Dvorak" etc. but the various opinions are all tied to the same belief system: "don't interfere with the people currently winning in the market because they are paying me to say that".

The better market does always win in the market! Now, define "better."

you would have to include marketing of product and luck as part of the product which gets kind of weird.

It's more complicated than that; VHS and Betamax are both better than each other :)

Betamax did have somewhat better picture quality, but it had real disadvantages (in particular, as mentioned elsewhere, impractically short tape lengths when using the high quality mode).

I’m sure there are people who think that way, but I assume more think along the lines of “the free market helped replace VHS with better formats, so the superior product still won out in the end”.

Idk how you go from free-market supporters think X to "free market supporters believe climate change isn't real".

First, I'm a free market supporter. So are you. You like buying stuff, and think companies should exist and all that right? And you believe in climate change, right?

Second, most often the more zealous free market supporters don't tend to think that climate change isn't real but that the solution lies in market solutions instead of government intervention. Personally, I disagree, but I don't think it's fair to just assert that people like me don't "believe in climate change" by supporting free markets.

You're typing this on HackerNews, a forum hosted by YCombinator which is the most capitalist and free-market type of organization that exists!

The comment you're replying to is talking about people who take free-market supremacy as a fundamental axiom that is used as the basis to reject empirical evidence. As in, somebody who would think along the lines "climate change can't actually be a problem, because if it were, the market would have recognized it and be adapting to the problem." Or, "these credit default swaps must be well founded, because it would be impossible for a free market of financial products to misvalue them." Or "The Dvorak keyboard layout must be worse otherwise the free market would have chosen it over QWERTY."

These are all real opinions that many people encounter in the real world and have to fight against.

> they take the side of "VHS was better than Betamax", "Climate change isn't real" "Qwerty is better than Dvorak" etc.

Which one of these is not like the other?

The free-market isn't some entity with a plan. It can't say "well we're going to screw up the whole world if we don't reduce profits now". It also does optimize at times for inefficient local minimums in practice.

I don't think what you and the OP I responded to are saying is really consistent at all and I will stand by and continue to criticize someone saying that free market supporters "don't believe climate change is real". That's nonsense. Again, some (not all) would simply argue the market can better handle it than government intervention. I disagree with this but you can't say people who believe in free markets don't believe that it's real. And furthermore, you believe in free markets and you believe it's real right? Or do you not? I'd love to hear a reconciliation of that.

> "these credit default swaps must be well founded, because it would be impossible for a free market of financial products to misvalue them."

Well if we throw aside government regulation of banks in general (before, during, after, the Fed, the whole shebang), the market would have worked itself out here. Those who took excess risk without understanding it would have failed. It's no different than any other risk taking. Unfortunately the government and banks are socializing losses and privatizing gains here. Many are suggesting in retrospect that we should have let the banks fail, because now that they know they will be bailed out they'll engage in even more risky behavior. The free market is further distorted here. I think it's a really interesting and long conversation to have, but you're oversimplifying it to defend an indefensible position.

In other words, you don't get to double-blame the free market. The free market wouldn't have bailed out the banks. It might have created the risky behavior, but the government bailed them out, so we don't get to see the system correct itself.

> These are all real opinions that many people encounter in the real world and have to fight against.

Yep. I have to all the time talk about and defend things too. People say the second amendment should be abolished, or that we shouldn't have universal health care and they are real things that I have to fight against (I support UHC and 2ndA). Nobody here has some big burden fighting against opinions in the wild any more than anyone else does.

I don't really understand what's going on here. That comment started with:

> Some extreme free-market supporters

I'm not asking you either embrace or defend these extreme, incorrect positions. Further, I'm especially not interested in discussing the merits of them, and I don't know why you should feel a need to defend these ridiculous positions, as a free-market supporter, unless you also hold these ridiculous views.

> I'm not asking you either embrace or defend these extreme, incorrect positions

Are there multiple incorrect positions to defend?

What I've said is that you can't assume someone who is an "extreme free-market supporter" (what even is this? Maybe they mean even average free market supporters. Idk.) doesn't believe in climate change. More likely, at least based on my own experience and the literature I've read from serious "extreme" free-market thinkers is that they think the market is in a better position than the government to solve the problem.

Again I personally disagree, but I don't think that they necessarily hold incorrect, immoral, or irrational views either.

I explicitly didn't claim to know what they believed. I said they said whatever they were paid to say.

In many ways, this makes it worse. You might randomly not trust the science on cigarettes, or fossil fuels, or lead in petrol, etc. etc. But when you consistently show up to defend people who know they are ruining lives for their own private profit because they dont want to face the inconvenience of the competition that the truth would cause, then they're basically bad people.

I'm a fan of markets and Adam Smith, but not a fan of the fascism that passes for libertarian thought in the US.

> I’m a fan of markets and Adam Smith, but not a fan of the fascism that passes for libertarian thought in the US.

Idk what you’re trying to say here with the rest of your post “they’re paid to say that!” But maybe if you could clear up who you’re talking about when you mention these fascist libertarians that would help. That’s a bit of an oxymoron to me so maybe you are thinking of a different group?

> But when you consistently show up to defend people who know they are ruining lives for their own private profit

I mean I think that could be the case with many groups, I’m not sure how that’s a libertarian thing? And even so it’s not like many of them don’t truly believe that the market can solve global warming better. Like I think commies genuinely believe that what they espouse is for good, though I know it’s certainly not. I don’t think they’re lying. Do you assume everyone is lying about their motives or just the group you currently disagree with?

To be clear up front, I think American libertarianism is just another face of the Republican party and the two work hand in hand and can both be fairly, objectively, factually, and usefully classed as Fascist. (It's not a coincidence that the novel "It can't happen here" called it's American fascism Corporatism.)

It's hard to tell how much they believe it themselves, but lots of American Libertarians seem to have grown up in Republican households, logically rejected the more obviously evil and stupid parts of the platform and publicly distance themselves from it but have been unable to shake many of the subconscious beliefs they picked up and so those get expressed through the lens of Libertarianism.

This is hard to see when it comes to e.g. welfare as (conveniently) the moral framework has been set up to favour the people who already have the property, which provides a lot of overlap with conservatism, which similarly has a lot of "theory" but also comes down to "protect the wealth and power of the wealthy and powerful".

Where they most obviously break their own rules is environmentalism and climate change, where people are reducing the value of other people's property via pollution without getting a contract to allow that.

This leads to obvious hypocrisy and some flat out denial.

As I mentioned, I like free markets and agree with Adam Smith (though not the Adam Smith Institute, who are exactly the kind of people I'm calling out here), I agree with many of the arguments that Libertarians make when that stuff agrees with their basic purpose. But I continue to agree with what they claim to believe in when it gets awkward for them to do so. So it's annoying to see one get on their high-horse about principles while still supporting mainstream libertarian thought, which is generally going in the opposite direction and reducing competition and entrenching the existing aristocracy at the expense of utility, efficiency and progress.

I can’t really agree with you that Libertarians are a faction of the Republican Party. Feel like that would be untrue by definition and many libertarians are atheists, want weed legalized, disagree with war mongering, etc., and so while there is some policy overlap (just like there is with Democrats) it’s more of happenstance than being a faction. Both Republicans and Democrats tend to want to increase the size and scope of government and redistribute wealth based on their own priorities, which is something that generally is opposed to libertarian ideals. If you take more serious libertarians they’re probably saying defund welfare and the military.

> Where they most obviously break their own rules is environmentalism and climate change, where people are reducing the value of other people's property via pollution without getting a contract to allow that.

Ok so there’s a lot to unpack here and libertarians come in different flavors but it’s actually consistent. Most libertarians who actually know what they’re talking about would argue a couple of things:

First, someone else polluting the environment is a breach of contract even if it’s not formally signed. Your actions would be causing loss for another person. There’s difficulty in assessing blame, but in clear cases like pollution of an upstream river libertarian philosophy would indicate loss on the economic side. The hard part here is what to do about it, and that’s where you start to see more flavors of libertarianism emerge and get interesting.

Second, libertarians would likely say not that climate change isn’t a problem but the market can solve the problem better than the government can. This isn’t “breaking their own rules” but is instead completely consistent with libertarian philosophy and is rationally defensible. This is especially true given any study of economics shows evidence of this being the case in some or many industries. I personally disagree, but you can’t outright attribute this thought to malice. Here’s a trivial example! Why is the government subsidizing fossil fuels and oil and gas companies? Libertarians would argue that this market intervention by the government is leading the government itself to hold at least some responsibility for climate change.

I think your assessment of libertarianism is at most casual and your critiques are not wholly consistent. Comments like “this leads to flat out hypocrisy and denial” are baseless and easy to throw around. Same with “protect the power of the wealthy and the elite” - like what do you think Republicans and Democrats do??

I think you have this straw man of what you think libertarianism is and you just want to attack and blame everything on that. It’s like blaming everything on Hillary Clinton or something.

Big potential source of income here. The supercharger network stands head and shoulders above every other charging network in the US.

Some key advantages include: reliability, convenience, ubiquity, and location. I've never been to a supercharger with more than one broken stall, they all "just work". I've also tried other options, but I've actually never found one that was operational at the time.

The problem is that some of them are already pretty crowded on a consistent basis. For example, I drove from NYC to Wisconsin a few times, every time the Maumee, OH Supercharger is full. There's not really any alternatives to it without going really out of the way. I worry that opening the chargers to all EVs might make it even worse.

I think it will cause more people to use the chargers. It will only be _worse_ if Tesla doesn't react and expand (hopefully with their new-found $$$ from other auto makers).

The solution is charging higher rates for non-Tesla charging, which opens the door for even more aggressive expansion of the network.

I agree completely. The convenience of the Tesla system is the most important thing in my book. Charging my Model Y is the same at home as it is at a SuperCharger; just plug it in. It's so easy my Mom and a teenager have done it with no training.

I've used other non-Tesla chargers while on road trips (just to try them out) and the experience is much, much worse. There is usually an app do download, or you have to swipe your CC, or both. There is usually some sort of screen with instructions, but they are all different and sometimes the screen is not visible/broken. It's a real mess.

>> I've used other non-Tesla chargers while on road trips (just to try them out) and the experience is much, much worse.

Of course it is. They have to support cars from all manufacturers (except Tesla). They all have an app, but so does Tesla. The sum of all charger networks is larger than the Tesla network and growing faster too.

I do think it will be interesting to see how this plays out.

Tesla doesn't have an app for charging. The act of plugging in the car is enough to associate the car to a billable account, without requiring fidgeting with a phone to open an app to initiate charging/billing. Don't even need to authorize with NFC.

This is a significant improvement over using NFC and apps.

How do I pay to charge someone’s car I’m borrowing for a day or two then without it going to their account? Seems too restrictive. Much better to have an NFC scanner that works with Apple/Google pay services. Taking 3 seconds on a tap to pay system is not a hardship that needs to be reduced.

That is kind of a corner case unless you’re renting out your car, and not one worth making the main use case worse for, imo. Your friend can always look up the bill and you can Venmo them or hand them cash.

Have you used superchargers? I get the sense that a lot of commenters here haven’t. The current UX is nearly spot on perfect - plug in, walk off, app notifies you when it’s almost done charging. Only issue I’ve seen is needing to go back to your car to avoid idle fees, but it’s understandable.

My argument isn’t that it’s not a corner case, it most certainly is. I wouldn’t need it more than a few times a year max. My point is that the “extra hassle” of a tap to pay system is so amazingly minuscule it’s more than worth it to include the extra flexibility. Tap to pay credit cards and phone NFC payment options are so easy to use now that losing any flexibility at all to not have to use them is not a good trade off, at least in my opinion.

Why should the charging stall need an interface? All the cars have a screen that could be used for that.

Eh there’s usually still some interface to deal with in those systems, here you don’t have to do anything, it probably cuts off more than half of the interaction time. When it’s been pouring rain, I’ve been especially thankful I didn’t have to fumble for a card in my wallet.

For pretty much all the tap to pay enabled pumps I have used the process was tap payment method, select fuel grade, start pumping. Since this is electric the fuel grade choice would be eliminated. So the process would just be tap payment choice, plug in.

Also, most fuel pumps were covered so the idea of negotiating payment in the rain wasn't too much of a concern. It almost seems like a regression to me that most EV charging stations usually have no covers to them.

Really? At least around here, there’s still usually zip code entry, do you want a car wash, do you want a receipt, etc. I’ve also used some tap enabled non Tesla chargers that are on the better end (no app required, just tap payment), but even there, there’re some screens to go through to accept terms, here’s the rate, which is different from other chargers of this type, wait a little while we authorize the charge, alright now you can go. It’s fine, but it’s not totally frictionless like the Tesla method. Again, you all are arguing for making the UX somewhat worse, in order to add flexibility that’s frankly not needed. I encourage you to just try them, if you haven’t, before having a strong opinion about this.

Lack of coverings, yeah, but you’re not meant to stand around next to the charger, since they’re not as quick as gas pumps - you can sit in the car, and you’re free to “idle” it, running AC/music/surfing the web, or just go inside whatever venue the charger’s associated with. Also, presumably it makes it a good bit cheaper and quicker to deploy more of these.

On the pumps I've used, zip code entry is required for swiped cards but I don't recall a time a tap to pay pump has asked me for one. Also often the "Do you want a car wash? Y/N, Do you want a receipt Y/N" screens can often by bypassed by just choosing fuel grade but I do acknowledge some don't continue until you make some selection. That said, I don't go to too many gas stations with car washes on site so that might be the reason why I don't recall getting stuck on those screens very often.

Either way, the 5-10 seconds of dealing with a prompt or two on the machine pales in inconvenience of waiting for the car to charge, so much at least in my opinion its a rather inconsequential inconvenience. Cool, you've shaved off 10 seconds so I can hurry up and get to my 20-30min wait for the car to charge. Its not like its really saving me that much more time. I've never in my life thought "dang, my life is so hard, I had to tell the pump I didn't want a car wash. If only someone could come up with a process that would prevent the pump from even asking if I would like a wash, my life would be so much better." And I have used the plug-in and charge process with a Mach E and an EA charger, so its not like I don't know what I'm missing. Its just such a massively inconsequential change in my life and yet it gets billed as the best thing since sliced bread and clearly one of the main reasons why you should pick one expensive car over the other. And as I've mentioned elsewhere, it makes it a lot more complicated to change to a different payment method other than the default you've set up on the account. To change a payment method with traditional pumps, I just use a different card. To change the payment method on a plug and go kind of car, well, that depends on the car and how its account is set up and managed.

Also, I get why electric charging stations don't have covers, they're much cheaper to deploy. That said, you're probably going to have your car there longer, there's a higher chance you might be in the car waiting during that time, so it would be really nice especially where I live (Texas) to have that covered. That and while I realize these connectors are designed for it there's something about handling high voltage high amperage power connectors in the rain that makes me quite uncomfortable to plug and unplug in the rain.

Right? With recently updated petrol pumps its been pretty simple to negotiate payment. Tap my phone to the pump, choose fuel grade, start pumping. Since its electric, it would be tap phone, plug it in. Having it all tied to some account related with the car its now a much bigger hassle to change the payment method.

Probably any other way you'd reimburse them for charges? What are the chances that your charging correlates with usage anyway?

Just plugging in the car won't work for Non-Teslas, though, so that advantage is straight out the window.

At least until there's further standardization to allow it.

There's no reason current non-Tesla chargers couldn't support this, other than they haven't bothered to.

Apparently you can plug in a Ford Mach-e at an Electrify America charger and it "just works". You cannot yet do that with a VW ID.4 (even thought VW built the network) but since the capability is clearly there, I'd expect to see it come in later software updates for the car.

Its an improvement in some ways, a regression in others. Its now much harder to choose a different payment option. On a traditional gas pump, I just use a different card.

> The sum of all charger networks is larger than the Tesla network and growing faster too.

Do you have any stats on this? I'm not doubting you, but I often browse this which can show (crowd-sourced) changes to the Supercharger network and it is growing pretty fast:


I _think_ that table is measured in groups of chargers.

If so, comparing the brands is a bit moot since most non-Tesla normally has at least 4 (and normally much more) charging bays where as many other DC fast charging places normally have less than 4 (often 2).

No? I guess I'm not sure what you're looking at, it's all explicitly called out. First column is level 2 locations, second column is level 2 connections (aka: charging bays). Column 3 is DC locations, column 4 is DC connections per location. Column 5 they conveniently do the math of average connections per location.

I think people underestimate that simplicity. Sure, the Taycan can charge faster. In real life, the time you'll spend finding a working charger makes it far slower. Tesla makes it just work, and they do so stunningly well. They're compared to Apple for a reason.

As well as software execution. You can see queue times for superchargers, how many stalls are out of order etc, all on the map in each Tesla which is very convenient when on a roadtrip

Zapmap and carplay/android auto at least in the UK covers this.

Currently, the best chargers in the UK (for convenience, and as much as my limited experience has been) are Instavolt: contactless payment, no app.

Not quite as convenient, but familiar for most people. Parking meters are worse!

I hope other OEMs are competent enough to integrate that functionality.

Everyone should pitch in to have one system.

It will be the worst if 10 years from now every vehicle has a different ’usb’ port while your mileage count goes lower.

Tesla moved first, and that deserves some reward because anyone could have started for decades prior to Tesla.

In the EU the standard connector is IEC 62196 Type 2 aka CCS. All the public chargers I've seen have either the AC (aka Type 2) version, or the AC and DC (aka CCS) version plus CHAdeMO. Even Tesla uses that for their cars and superchargers in Europe.

I rented a Renault Zoe for a week, last May in Dordogne (a nice French southwest department). I charged the car wherever I spent the night. At a hotel, there was 2 Tesla Destination chargers: one had a small "for Tesla" plate and the other was "for EV". The "for EV" connector was identical to the one for Tesla (Type 2 I guess). Both worked with the Zoe and I managed to make a full charge (~400km) in about 2-3 hours. I didn't pay a dime. The experience was much better than with AC public charging stations where I paid 5€ for roughly the same energy and had to use a ChargeMap card (from the Zoe owner).

I mean it's not like they had a choice in the matter. Weren't they forced by law to use that connector? If not then it would have been market share I can only assume.

Have we developed the final charging standard? We’ll be using whatever we agree upon for decades.

Yes, it's called CCS is EU/USA.

For asia, it's still undecided between CCS and CHAdeMO

CCS is kind of a mess due to backwards compatibility. Tesla’s plug design is a better standard, but it’s unlikely for companies to abandon CCS.

How come? CCS is fantastic, because it's backwards compatible with Type 2 connector by default, so you don't need to have both on a car, it literally works with any Type 2 charger OR any CCS charger, using one socket. The only thing it doesn't work with is Type 1, but the last car commercially released with a type 1 socket was the Outlander PHEV, like half a decade ago, at least over here in the UK. Type 1 just doesn't exist as a standard anymore, special order only.

Sure praise be to backwards compatibility today, just realize the added costs never go away.

Tesla’s connector is lower weight among other advantages and a simple adaptor allows for Type 2 or CCS charging as well. We are very early into the EV transition to be worrying about backwards compatibility.

It’s not backwards compatible as in Type2 would be obsolete. Type2 is for AC charging (up to 22kW) and that what home chargers use. So it is not going away.

CCS just adds two large pins under the Type2 for DC charging. No sense to have those heavy pins when you’re charging from small 3.7kW home wallbox.

Type2 is over engineered for home charging, and even ignoring that it’s not a great long term solution. I doubt wireless charging will ever be popular for 150kW fast charging, but it would be convent for daily trickle charging and electrified roads for truly unlimited range. IMO, some in road charging system is the long term future of EV’s and using whatever that is for at home charging is probably going to eventually take off.

Anyway, using slightly larger pins in a home connection is trivial vs the overall advantages. It’s the heavy gage wiring and active cooling that makes fast chargers heavy and that’s where you notice the added bulk and weight of the backwards comparable connector.

Type 1 definitely still exists as a standard. In NA, every EV other than Tesla has a J1772 (a.k.a. "Type 1") charge port.


A css adapter is huge and unwieldy compared to the Tesla one. It's about double the size of the tesla adapter.

What do you mean by adapter? Adapter from what to what?

Forgive me. I flubbed.

If I were Asia, I would choose Type2 CCS in a combo with ChaoJi (the new version of Chademo). It's like the European CCS, but with its main flaw being resolved (namely, allowing you to plug upper and lower parts separately and not in one unwieldy piece).

Here is a picture: https://www.chademo.com/wp2016/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/co...

Correct, I noticed that at a lot of newly built charging stations along motorways here in the UK it's just CCS - no more Type 2, no more CHADeMO(sucks for Leaf owners I guess).

Evidence that's the best for next decades? Sorry but the word of EU bureaucracy is not enough.

What kind of evidence would you find sufficient? CCS supports 350kW charging speeds(as-is, it can support more with very minor changes to the cable/plug spec), higher than any car currently on the market. What exactly are your requirements to make a charging standard "best for the next decades"?

The Audi e-tron GT charges at 270KW. Pretty close already. A standard petrol/gas pump pushes 22MW, or ~7MW equivalent when taking into account ICE efficiency.

Right, but I think aiming for petrol pump equivalency isn't very helpful when planning a charging standard right now - this theoretical 7MW charging station would be absolutely insane in order to provide that much power through a single cable(I would love to see a calculation for how thick it would need to be to make that happen), second of all how do you cool down a battery charging at 7MW, and third of all how do you get that kind of power to the charging site(especially if we're talking about multiple charging points running at once).

Even right now the new FastNED or Ionity charging stations that have the latest 300kW chargers are very difficult to install due to the huge power requirements, especially with several of them running in parallel. Tesla Superchargers do actually slow down when multiple cars are charging at once.

So going back to the charging standard - the "default" CCS plug supporting "only" 350kW is going to be sufficient for a long time I think. And if it's not it can be made to support more with very minor changes to the design - after all it's literally just two prongs thar carry the power.

7MW is about half a high speed train at maximum power, but that's using a 25kV supply.

But running the cables is presumably easier when the railway has that convenient strip of land all across the country.

> Everyone should pitch in to have one system.

Are there any financial incentives for this? Even if a technical solution exists, are there incentives for EV manufacturers to support it?

This is one of the big things I'm looking for before committing to buying an EV as my next vehicle. Even if Tesla "opens" their charging network, that's not the same as having a single, universal charging standard which anyone can build out themselves. A "USB for cars" would be the ideal solution.

This actually seems to be mostly done already. EU mandated CCS and China GB 20234. So if Tesla has to support these anyway, it doesn't really make sense to maintain a Tesla-only charging network in these markets.

As I doubt the US will adopt GB 20234, my bet would be on CCS.

Yes, one system would be nice.

Second-best is carrying a bunch of adapters in your frunk and having charging on different standards (that you can adapt) available widely.

I think the latter is more likely, given that everyone these days wants to build/own their own platform. As long as you can adapt it and pay to charge, it's a step in the right direction.

Literally everybody other than Tesla is using the J1772 connector with CCS for fast charging. CHAdeMO was around for a while but nobody is using it on new vehicles anymore.

"everybody other than Tesla" doesn't count for much just yet. It certainly will in the future. Tesla's level 2 connector lines up electrically with J1772 anyways, hence the tiny adapter.

In Europe it accounts for the majority of the BEV market. Hence Tesla uses CCS only on their Model 3 since 2018 (and probably all future cars)

This isn't by choice.. this is by mandate. A damn good decision none the less.

Applications are open for YC Winter 2022

Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | API | Security | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact