In a recent interview with the Financial Times, Elon Musk confirmed that Tesla’s Supercharger network in the United States (and North America, in general) will open up to non-Tesla electric vehicles.
This will expand the non-Tesla Supercharger driver, which launched last November and is currently available in France, Norway and the Netherlands.
Although Elon – being Elon – didn’t divulge a specific timeframe, he did hint at the addition of a different connector:
“It’s a bit trickier in the US because we have a different connector than the rest of the industry. But we will add the rest of the optional industry connectors to Superchargers in the USA.
This can only indicate the CSS Type 1 plug, the standard charging connector in the North American market.
It is unclear how this change will be implemented, but it will surely require an infrastructure change.
Supercharger stands could end up having a double header, with Tesla’s own connector and a CSS1 connector. We may also see a special adapter from Tesla to CSS1.
It’s a bit trickier compared to Europe, where all new Tesla models come with a CSS2-compatible charging socket — the standard connector in the European market.
Either way, it’s safe to assume that non-Tesla EVs will also be able to use the company’s network through the Tesla app.
When asked if the choice puts the company at risk, Musk displayed his usual “savior of the world” attitude:
“We are trying as best we can to do what is necessary for the advancement of electrification; even if it diminishes our competitive advantage.
But if we get past his messianic comment, the expansion of the Supercharger network is definitely a good thing. Better access to fast-charging sites is essential to facilitate the adoption of electric vehicles, regardless of the supplier.
And no, we’re not going to cry over the “loss” of Tesla, because it’s going to take advantage of charging tariffs.
You can watch the full interview below, but start at 1:03:40 if you don’t have an hour and 20 minutes to spare.