November last year saw the launch of the non-Tesla Supercharger pilot in the Netherlands, through which it wanted to ascertain the viability of the project. This was then expanded into France and Norway in February of this year and, in March, Transport Minister Trudy Harrison spilled the beans that a UK pilot was due before the Summer.
Well, we now find ourselves at the end of spring and Tesla has confirmed that not only is the UK starting its own non-Tesla Supercharger pilot, so are Spain, Belgium, Sweden and Austria. This leaves just a few of the big western European nations without all EV access to Tesla’s enviable charging network.
In the UK, the pilot will see 15 stations and 158 individual chargers opened up to any EV which uses a CCS connection. These stations can be located on Tesla’s website, but in case you’re wondering, they are the following Supercharger stations from south to north:
All stations are capable of 150kW+ supercharging and are among the most reliable and highly rated of any charging network, regularly topping satisfaction surveys in the UK and overseas.
Those who want to start using them should start by downloading the app which offers guidance to the various available locations. Users can then select to pay a £10.99 membership fee via the app to gain a lower price per kWh, whilst non-members can still access the chargers but will pay a higher price of £0.60p per kWh on average, with variances per location.
According to Tesla, it has always been the brand’s ambition to open the Supercharger network to non-Tesla EVs, encouraging more people to go electric and expand the network faster than if it was only being supported by Tesla owners. Their plan is to “learn and iterate quickly, while continuing to aggressively expand the network, so we can eventually welcome both Tesla and Non-Tesla drivers at every Supercharger worldwide”.
Enabling owners of EVs from other brands to use Tesla’s Supercharger network is a huge bonus. Whether you live close to a Supercharger or simply need to top up whilst traversing the country, the 15 locations are placed strategically enough to make it convenient for either scenario. Reliability and speed from Tesla’s infrastructure really is top-notch. Obviously, Tesla owners might feel this is an encroachment on their previously ringfenced space, but let’s be honest – Tesla is going to be way ahead of ensuring that the experience isn’t sullied by opening up its network and would do something about it if it was.
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