Earlier this year, Tesla updated its goal for Supercharger deployment to reach 10,000 Superchargers by the end of the year – virtually doubling the number of Supercharger stalls in 2017.
After opening a few more stations over the last week, Tesla has now 6,000 Superchargers around the world, which means that the company will have to add 4,000 more Superchargers within the next 6 months.
Is it even possible?
For context, that’s more Supercharger deployment over 6 months than Tesla did over the first 3 years of the Supercharger network.
It sounds almost impossible, but the company has definitely improved its deployment efficiency and its new strategy will help. Though will it be enough?
As we reported this week, Tesla is now working on a new kind of Supercharger station with higher numbers of stalls. We reported on a new station between Los Angeles and San Francisco that will have 40 Superchargers. That’s twice as many stalls as Tesla’s current biggest stations.
The company would technically only have to open 100 of those stations within the next 6 months in order to achieve its goal. That would only be a marginal increase in the number of stations since Tesla just reached 900 Supercharger stations, but the company’s goal was related to the number of chargers, not stations.
We started 2017 with over 5,000 Superchargers globally and by the end of this year, Tesla will double that number to total more than 10,000 Superchargers and 15,000 Destination Charging connectors around the world. In North America, we’ll increase the number of Superchargers by 150 percent, and in California alone we’ll add more than 1,000 Superchargers. We’re moving full speed on site selection and many sites will soon enter construction to open in advance of the summer travel season.
Of course, Tesla keeps also opening other stations with fewer stalls so there will not actually be 100 of those larger stations.
But even those regular stations are featuring higher than average numbers of stalls. Here are the most recent new stations opened over the last week via Supercharge.info:
Tesla’s current average is 6.7 Superchargers per station, which means that all those stations with between 8 and 16 chargers are increasing the average and once those new 40+ stalls stations are coming online, the average will go way up.
As we reported yesterday, a second one is already reportedly planned in Norway and they now have over 100 stations either under construction or with permits ready.
Nonetheless, deploying new stations involves a lot of different factors and if just one is late, it creates delays. Tesla has to ramp up production of the chargers themselves, but that shouldn’t be too big of an issue since those are made from the same chargers found in Tesla’s vehicles. Yet, there are also a lot of other equipment involved.
Then there are construction contractors, city permits, electric utility work and connection, and any of those can result in delays.
Furthermore, Tesla’s strategy for its regular 8 to 20 stalls stations is not the same as its strategy for its new stations with 40+ stalls.
Tesla was approaching businesses with fairly simple long-term contracts to have access to some parking spots and an area to install its chargers, but for the new stations, Tesla needs to acquire or lease entire parcels of land in order to build its new parking with Superchargers, solar canopy, and “customer lounges.”
In order words, those 4,000 new Superchargers by the end of the year will be difficult to deploy.
What do you think? Can Tesla deliver on this goal? Let us know in the comment section below.
Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.