Rumours had been circulating for a while that Tesla was planning to open up their expansive Supercharger network for other electric vehicle (EV) owners to use. Earlier this month CEO Elon Musk finally confirmed the rumours, saying other EV owners will be able to plug in later this year.
On today’s Q2 2021 earnings call, Musk provided further details and confirmed how exactly the system will work.
While responding to a question from a Tesla (TSLA) shareholder, Musk explained that other EV owners will first have to download the Tesla app. From there, they can visit a Supercharger and use the app to indicate which stall they intend to plug in at and how much energy they plan to use. Payment for the charging session will take place within the app.
For non-Tesla owners in North America, they will also have to purchase an adapter since only Tesla’s proprietary plugs are used in Canada and the US. Those in Europe and China will be able to use Tesla’s multi-port Superchargers that also have CCS plugs.
During the call Musk also said that Tesla will provide the adapters at Superchargers, so long as no one steals them. It was at that point that Drew Baglino, SVP of Powertrain and Energy Engineering at Tesla, said they have a good solution for that problem, but did not provide specific details.
Other details provided included the use of time-of-use charging fees to limit charging sessions to shorter durations since many EVs are not able to charge as fast as Tesla vehicles.
The automaker will also use the revenue to help expand the Supercharger network further, something which critics of the plan said must happen to make it worthwhile. Musk added the expansion needs to happen at a faster the Tesla vehicle production.
Something that wasn’t mentioned during the call was whether the automaker was going to finally release a CCS adapter in North America. This would finally allow Tesla owners to use other fast charging networks, something which could be important if Supercharger traffic increases with this new plan.