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Tesla's new 'V3' Superchargers could charge vehicles at rates of up to 1,000 miles per...

By Polycount · 15 replies
Mar 7, 2019
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  1. Despite Tesla's recent struggles, the company is still doing its best to improve the lives of its customers. For now, that means completely overhauled superchargers.

    Tesla is beginning to launch the first set of V3 Superchargers - these likely won't be upgrades to existing superchargers, but the new locations will boost charging speeds from a previous maximum of about 120kW to a whopping 250kW.

    Assuming these speeds can be maintained, Tesla owners who visit a V3 Supercharging station should find that their cars will charge at rates of up to 1,000 miles per hour. Thanks to some other changes Tesla is making to charging on the vehicle software side, the process may be even faster than that.

    An upcoming update will "prewarm" Tesla vehicle batteries when a driver draws near to a Supercharger. In theory, this could make charging times about 25 percent faster on average.

    In addition to faster charging, Tesla's V3 Superchargers also allow for more consistent charging - the stations effectively eliminate the power-sharing tech that is present at existing Supercharger locations. In other words, your charging speeds shouldn't be affected by how many other vehicles are plugged in around you.

    As exciting as this news is for current Tesla owners, it may be wise to temper your expectations. It will be quite some time before V3 Superchargers are widespread enough to make them a viable alternative to their regular counterparts.

    Furthermore, only the Model 3 will have built-in support for 250kW charging - other Tesla models will require a future software patch before they can take advantage of the same features.

    However, the first location is already open in San Francisco's Bay Area. If you happen to live there and own a Tesla car, give it a whirl and let us know how it goes in the comments.

    Permalink to story.

  2. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 2,670   +2,432

    This may be useful if they ever build batteries that can actually take advantage of that range. I still have no idea why we aren't transitioning over to fuel cells. The oil industry could adapt to this very rapidly and hydrogen splitting is more convenient and efficient than pure electric and just as clean - more clean, actually, because far less electricity needs to be generated by large power plants. If the main issue with the wrongly-named "fossil" fuels is the environment as the activists and carbon scammers all claim then this is the tech they should be supporting.
    IAMTHESTIG and p51d007 like this.
  3. Vulcanproject

    Vulcanproject TS Evangelist Posts: 714   +1,006

    Fuel cells are extremely expensive. Producing hydrogen on a large scale without using fossil fuels is expensive. Moving and storing hydrogen is expensive. Basically the whole thing is complex, expensive and requires vast swathes of new infrastructure.

    Whereas with electric cars, you plug into the existing grid perhaps with lightly modified outlets, and charge. You capture the power from source, say solar, and it goes straight into the battery. Efficiency is very high. Hydrogen chain efficiency is much, much lower. Moving energy through multiple steps, losing each time.

    The primary problem with electric is really charging speed. You can build cars now with impressive range. If charging them to 90+ percent of that range takes hours, it's still not really fast enough for most people who might want to top up with fuel in 5 minutes and drive off again. Convenience was key to the spread of the motor car.

    These superchargers are a step closer to fast, on demand charging. If you can add 100 miles range in 10 minutes, then it's starting to get to the point where if these chargers were everywhere like gas stations, driving around would be stress free from range anxiety.

    An issue (besides the big one- availability) is that at the moment most likely you won't be able to use them all the time without risking faster battery wear. Even now supercharger speed is limited when people use them frequently, to try and reduce battery wear.

    However we are closing in on mainstream adoption of electric cars. I think it's only 10 years before a very significant percentage of new cars sales are electric.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2019
    treetops and ForgottenLegion like this.
  4. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,943   +1,208

    Yeah, when I'm on a trip, I LOVE waiting around for an hour or more, to "recharge" the battery.
    Nope, I'm one of those that fills up with gas, and GOES!
    I think the most "convenient" would be to put charge stations near restaurants, and what not,
    so when mom, dad and the 2.3 kids are eating breakfast/lunch/dinner, they can charge up the
    I'd prefer fuel cells, would be like filling your gas tank. Top off and go.
  5. QuantumPhysics

    QuantumPhysics TS Evangelist Posts: 1,180   +859

    #1 I leased a Model S and a Model X - a full charge does take about an hour on their supercharger.

    #2 Most people do not fill up their car with gas each and every time they stop at the gas station.

    #3 Many Tesla owners have an electric charger at home - they may get enough energy just to get home and then recharge the car over night.
  6. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 5,304   +3,708

    Lots of advantages to electric vehicles but until they can extend the range greater than 600 miles on a charge, charging time of no more than one to two hours, and get the price down to comparable cost / size as fossil fuel vehicles it's fighting an uphill battle. What is truly ludicrous is the fact that we had electric cars just about the same time as gas vehicles came out, but these failed for nearly the same reasons.
  7. brucek

    brucek TS Maniac Posts: 151   +188

    Couldn't they just say "now with double the charging speed" instead of the ludicrous "1,000 miles per hour!!!!" marketing speak?

    Miles per hour implies movement, when the actual speed here is zero because the car isn't moving.

    Furthermore, "1000 mph" in the context of automobiles implies an extreme rate of speed. But there's nothing extreme about this, if anything, it's still very slow compared to a gas car at a gas station. My ordinary SUV probably gets something like "2500 mph!!!!" under this same ridiculous terminology.
    IAMTHESTIG likes this.
  8. brucek

    brucek TS Maniac Posts: 151   +188

    Really? I can think of like twice in my entire life I did not fill the tank. One was because the car was about to be shipped over the ocean and they require you to keep the tank near empty, and the other was when I forgot my wallet and only had the few bucks I could scrounge from my glove compartment.

    Is there some benefit to not filling up? I would have assumed that most people do not prefer extra trips to the gas station, extra times to go through the start and end of the filling/purchase process, etc.
  9. QuantumPhysics

    QuantumPhysics TS Evangelist Posts: 1,180   +859

    #1 Some people don't fill up because:

    a) time
    b) debit card/ credit card limits
    c) weight reduction
  10. Plutoisaplanet

    Plutoisaplanet TS Booster Posts: 92   +71

    What’s cool about this is this is going to apply retroactively to all S/3/X vehicles with supercharging. As an owner of a 2015 Model S, I NEVER expected Supercharging V3 would benefit me. I don’t know if I’ll get the double peak charging rate but that’s completely fine by me.
  11. Excepts it's not.

    You don't say your Tesla gets 100 MPG, because there is no such thing as gallons in an EV. The rate at which your charge your EV is measured in miles and how fast... hence "miles per hour."

    You also wouldn't say your EV charges 100 gallons per hour, because that also makes zero sense.
  12. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,943   +1,208

    I never let my tank go more than 1/4 empty, just from the fact that most gasoline stations have sediment that can get in the tank, and, if you run it all the way to the "low fuel light" you take a chance of that garbage eventually plugging up the fuel filter.
    The problem I have with pure EV's is the charging issue. You have to carefully at times, plan where, when you will be near some place to recharge. At least a hybrid can "get you by", but a QUICK refill would be why I would be MORE in favor of an hydrogen cell powered vehicle, unless the EV's can "quick charge".
    But, as we know from decades of quick charging, that can have an impact, over time in battery life & performance.

    IAMTHESTIG likes this.
  13. Lew Zealand

    Lew Zealand TS Guru Posts: 610   +495

    While I've heard this many times, I just never followed that advice. Laziness alone, nothing more than that. Ran my tank dry only once though, not too bad for 30+ years of driving, eh? Of course maybe that's what finally did my engine in but I'll take 35 years of service I suppose...
  14. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 7,387   +617

    I also try not to let my tank go less than 1/4 full but for a different reason. Most modern cars have their fuel pump inside the tank and the fuel keeps the submerged electric motor cool. When there isn't enough fuel in the tank, the electric pump tends to run hotter and it's life can be shortened. For the pedantic it doesn't run so hot as to be fire hazard though. Regarding the sediment issue, the fuel pickup is fixed at the bottom of the tank already so you can't avoid picking up sediment anyway.

    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 1,702   +788

    1,000 mph?!??! What an annoyingly stupid way to say that. Why not just say "a full charge in 15-25 minutes, depending on which battery capacity you have."?

    I agree with a lot of you though battery-powered electric cars will NEVER have 100% market penetration until you can fully charge the battery in 10 minutes or less. Sure these cars are probably fine for about 90% of city dwellers, but those taking cross-country trips or who live in very rural areas are not going to be comfortable with the potential of running out of juice and having no where to charge up quickly, or at all for that matter.

    Hydrogen really can be the answer, and it can be generated at home. And we already have storage and transportation infrastructure for gasoline and diesel, that could be adapted to handle hydrogen. There are those out there trying to c*ck block hydrogen, likely for reasons of greed.

    Personally I'd like to see a hybrid battery/hydrogen powered electric vehicle (assuming ability to refuel hydrogen with the same availability as gasoline is now). I really think that could be a case of having your cake and eating it too.
  16. yRaz

    yRaz Nigerian Prince Posts: 2,864   +2,169

    I usually throw in $5-10 every morning when I get my morning coffee. I fill up my tank maybe once a month, if that.

    I'll hand them a 5, 10 or a 20 dollar bill and just tell them to "pit the rest on pump X" or "just give me 5 back"

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