White House throws its support behind NACS as Tesla’s charging tech gets closer to SAE standardization

Tesla’s North American Charging Standard (NACS) is one step closer to becoming just that as the White House has thrown its support behind Tesla’s charging technology after SAE International released its Technical Information Report (TIR) on NACS.

SAE, formerly known as the Society of Automotive Engineers, announced earlier this year it was putting NACS on the fast track to standardization to ensure that any supplier or manufacturer will be able to use, manufacture, or deploy the NACS connector on electric vehicles (EVs) and at charging stations across North America. The announcement came after a slew of automakers signed on to adopt Tesla’s charging technology, wiping out the Combined Charging System (CCS) almost overnight.

On Tuesday SAE announced it has completed its next step in the standardization process, publishing the Technical Information Report (TIR) for NACS, referred to as the SAE J3400 standard. While this does not make NACS the standard, it is a significant step in the process and means that key engineering and development details are now clear, allowing “developers to proceed with certainty about many critical aspects of deployment and commercialization of the NACS connector.”

With the release of the TIR, the White House has also thrown its support behind NACS to help get it across the finish line. In a statement by the Joint Office of Energy and Transportation, the Biden administration acknowledged the TIR as “a key step in the standards development process,” adding that achieving NACS standardization will improve the charging experience for EV owners.

“As the Biden-Harris Administration supports the buildout of a convenient and reliable national charging network, open standards are crucial to ensuring that every EV can charge at any station,” said Gabe Klein, Executive Director of the Joint Office. “We appreciate the commitment and knowledge of SAE and its experts from the automotive, EV charging, academic, and government sectors to make the charging experience easier and more accessible for Americans nationwide.”

With NACS one step closer to standardization, the first automakers who signed on to adopt Tesla’s charging technology will soon gain access to the Supercharger network. Starting in February owners of Ford and General Motors (GM) EVs will be able to plug in with an adapter. Other automakers will gain access through the year in a phased approach to ensure the network isn’t overwhelmed.

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