Will Tesla's New Supercharger Membership Hinder Rival Networks?
After telling the Biden Administration that it would open the US Tesla Supercharger network to non-Tesla EVs by the end of 2024, Tesla started opening it this week. The US EV maker also set up a new non-Tesla membership plan for charging, which, while somewhat pricey, may draw folks away from rival DC fast charging networks.
People will often pay more for something that’s considered the “gold standard,” and there’s no secret that Tesla has the most widespread and reliable EV fast-charging network across the globe. There are several other companies that have joined the growing list, but none have proven they can offer an experience quite like Tesla offers.
We see media coverage and reports on social media on a regular basis about broken public EV chargers, a lack of charging stations in general, units that seemingly lack adequate power, and most of all, constant and ongoing reliability issues. Interestingly, however, almost none of those reports ever include Tesla’s Superchargers as part of the problem, rather, they tend to be seen as examples of the way public charging should be.
Most EV owners are likely aware of the above, and whether or not they like Tesla, if they can charge their car in convenient locations on a regular basis without issue, you’d better bet they’ll opt for the Tesla Supercharger network. Even if they don’t plan to commit to it, most EV owners will probably be very compelled to at least give it a try.
Tesla’s membership plan for non-Tesla owners is a bit expensive, but it will save people money. The company is charging $12.99 per month, which guarantees people a lower charging rate (about 25% cheaper per session). This type of membership is common among rivals, such as Electrify America and EVGo, though the monthly rates at the rival network are lower, as is the chance you’ll be graced with a hassle-free and successful charging experience.
Once people try to Supercharger network and realize its worth, they may pay the monthly fee. Meanwhile, there’s a good chance these EV owners already have paid memberships at multiple networks, since non-Tesla owners typically need to rely on several different public charging options to get the job done.
If an EV owner is concerned about the higher price of the Tesla Supercharger network monthly fee, they could simply cancel all their other memberships, which would more than cover it, and then they’d have one fee and one network to rely on. How do you see it all playing out? Leave us your thoughts in the comment section below.
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