Gas vs EV roadtrip: Tesla Supercharger network proves it is the industry’s best

Audi Model S Ford
Image via MKBHD /YouTube

One of the main talking points against electric vehicles (EVs) is the lack of charging options compared to refuelling an internal combustion engine (ICE) car at a gas station. As the argument goes, not only does it take longer to “refuel”, but it makes taking an EV on a road trip difficult potentially adding hours to the journey.

Tesla enthusiast and Model S Plaid owner Marquees Brownlee (MKBHD) decided to put that theory to test. He put his Tesla against a Ford Mustang Mach-E and gas-powered Audi Q5 SUV to see which could complete a 1,000 mile (1,609km) road trip in the least amount of time.

Brownlee’s Plaid was outfitted with the 21″ Arachnid wheels, giving his car a range of 348 miles (560km). The Mach-E is a California Route 1 Edition with a range of 305 miles (490km). Finally, the Audi Q5 has a range of 462 miles (743km) on a full tank of gas.

The team only had two rules – no speeding and treat it like a normal road trip, with the only required stops being at certain waypoints to get a photo and an overnight stop to break up the trip.

Unsurprisingly, the Audi Q5 came in first with a total time of 18 hours 39 minutes. The Model S Plaid crossed the finish line 1 hour 32 minutes behind, while the Mach-E was in a distant third taking another 6 hours 35 minutes.

The more than 5 hour difference between the Tesla and the Ford ultimately came down to the charging network. The Model S was able to seamlessly plug into Superchargers without a problem. Adding to the simplicity was the on-board navigation which told them which Superchargers to stop at, and how long they would need to stay plugged in.

That wasn’t the case for the Mach-E, which encountered multiple broken chargers along the way, even having to rely on a trickle charger at one point to reach their destination.

The result validates the recent award from J.D. Power which ranked the Supercharger network and Tesla’s Destination Chargers as the industry’s best.

You can check out the full video below.

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Founder and Editor-in-chief of Drive Tesla Canada | Darryn@DriveTeslaCanada.ca Have a Tesla tip? Email tips@driveteslacanada.ca, or DM us on Twitter @DriveTeslaca