Tesla may soon charge congestion fee at busy Supercharger stations

The source code of the latest Tesla software update indicates the company may soon implement a congestion fee at busy Supercharger stations.

Tesla is set to see an increase in traffic at their Supercharger stations in North America next year after more than two dozen automakers will gain have signed on to adopt the North American Charging Standard (NACS). With those deals EV owners from those brands will gain access to the Supercharger network with an adapter starting in 2024, and then from 2025 the automakers will integrate the NACS charge port into their EVs.

Tesla already has one way to combat congestion at high-use stations, and that is by automatically adjusting your charge limit to 80%. This is done because charging speeds slow down considerably once you pass the 80% threshold. This is however a soft limit as you can manually increase it after plugging in, but it is a good way to at least make people aware that it is a high-use station and to only charge above 80% if absolutely necessary.

There are also idle fees, but that is more for preventing owners from staying plugged in after they have completed their charge.

Now it looks like Tesla is going to make you think twice before adjusting your charge limit by implementing a congestion fee, according to hacker @greentheonly, who took a close look at the source of the latest 2023.38 software update. According to green the fee will be incurred when you decide to change your limit and charge above 80% at high-use Supercharger stations. It is unclear if Tesla is going to change their definition of “high-use” with the new fee, or keep it the same as it is now.

Unfortunately there was also no information about how much the congestion fee will be. It could be modelled after the idle fee which has a set fee per minute when charging above 80%, and doubles when a station is 100% occupied. In Canada and the US the idle fee is $0.50 and $1.00 per minute.

What do you think of a Supercharger congestion fee? How much do you think it will be? Let us know in the comments below.

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