A Tesla Supercharger in Tennessee was blocked by a Mercedes-Benz EQS owned by a local dealership amid a busy travel time for Thanksgiving Day.
Was it a publicity stunt or a clueless customer who didn’t know how to use the electric car?
Scott Hall, a Tesla owner, stopped by the Tesla Supercharger station in Knoxville, Tennessee, yesterday, like many other travelers for Thanksgiving.
When he arrived, he found a Mercedes-Benz EQS, a performance electric sedan, parked in a way that blocked two chargers at the station.
Non-Tesla electric vehicles, like the EQS, cannot yet charge at Tesla Supercharger stations, nor was the vehicle attempting to. Rather, it was clearly intentionally parked to block access to both chargers at the end of the station amid an otherwise mostly empty parking lot (pictures via Scott Hall on Facebook):
It also happened to block a Supercharger stall reserved for people with disabilities.
The vehicle was equipped with a dealer’s plate and stickers for the local Mercedes-Benz of Knoxville dealership, which means that the vehicle is owned by the local dealer. Mercedes-Benz of Knoxville dealership is located just a mile down the road from the Tesla Supercharger station.
Electrek contacted the Mercedes-Benz of Knoxville dealership to ask them if they have a comment about their EQS being left to block two Supercharger stalls. We will update if we get a response.
Update: Mercedes-Benz of Knoxville told Electrek one of their customers did this without their knowledge. The car is actually still there. They claim that it ran out of charge and was left there, and an employee will be sent to get it today.
Update 2: Electrek has now confirmed that the car was indeed low on charge, but it was able to be moved away from Supercharger on its own power at 10 AM this morning.
The Mercedes-Benz EQS has been the German automaker’s response to the Tesla Model S, which had been taking sales from the Mercedes S-Class for years.
It looks like the local dealer or one of its employees thought it would be smart to use one of its fleet vehicles left unused during a holiday to partly block the local Tesla Supercharger in order for Tesla owners to see the Mercedes-Benz EQS.
Top comment by Edward Wong III
I think it's time for stricter legislation to punish "icing" a charging stall. Make it both a fine and possible towing to a holding lot which would generate even more fees to the offender when they go to retrieve their vehicle. Make it painful enough for offenders to hopefully curb future occurrences.
If the goal was publicity, it was successful, but it’s not good publicity. They are blocking charging stations meant for long-distance travel during an extremely busy travel time. That would only succeed in frustrating the Tesla owners stopping by – not spark their interest in the EQS.
For that, they could have just parked the car in front of the Supercharger station, which is in the middle of a giant mall parking lot with plenty of empty parking spots.
Update: the dealership now claims it’s a customer who did this. That’s their story and they are sticking to it, but I am skeptical. Conveniently, it’s an employee of the dealership that is going to pick it up at the Tesla Supercharger today.
The dealer claims that a customer who happened to have a brand new EQS on loan on Thanksgiving decided to weirdly park the car to block two Tesla Superchargers in a giant mostly empty parking lot because they ran out of charge a mile away from the dealership. That’s a suspicious explanation, but not impossible.
FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.