A Tesla owner in China was surprised with a ~$600,000 bill after a stop at a Supercharger station.

The automaker says it was a bug.

For years, Tesla never charged anything for its customers to charge at Supercharger stations.

It was part of the owner’s experience and included in the price of its vehicles.

This has changed over the last few years as Tesla moved to a paying model in order to accelerate the deployment of Supercharger stations across the world.

The automaker had to build a payment system that doesn’t affect the seamless experience of using Supercharger stations.

It has succeeded, for the most part, but we have heard of some issues every now and again. None as big as this one though.

A Tesla Model 3 owner in China got a very bad surprise after he was charged 3,846,306 yuan, the equivalent of over $600,000 USD, after a relatively short session at a Supercharger station.

Filter Crusher reported on the incident:

“Some netizens reported that when they were driving a Tesla Model 3, they charged for 20 minutes on February 27. Today, the vehicle was suddenly banned from Supercharging, and received an app prompt to pay a supercharging fee of 3,846,306 yuan. Filter Crusher called Tesla customer service, and the customer service responded that there was an error in the background system of some vehicles, and the technicians are repairing it. Not yet resolved.”

It’s not clear what the bug was, but it was quite strange since it involved several aspects of the Supercharger app.

In screenshots of the Supercharger tab in the owner’s Tesla app, it shows that the owner had free Supercharging miles from the previous Tesla referral program, but the last 2,286 km (1,420 miles) were all used in the last charging session even though there’s no way that Tesla could have delivered that:

After exhausting the miles, the owner’s car was blocked from the Supercharger, but since it was still plugged in, it started to incur idle fees at an exceptional pace.

Idle fees occur when people stay parked at a Supercharger station when they are not charging. They are there to incentivize people to quickly remove their cars from the station after being done with charging.

But in this case, a bug made them go out of control and faced the owner with a giant $600,000 bill.

If anything, it serves as a reminder to keep an eye on your Supercharger bills, because a lot of people have been conditioned not to pay too much attention to them.

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Fred Lambert

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