Perhaps one of the most compelling answers to the limited-range of electric vehicles, the Tesla Supercharger network now makes it possible to travel across the country without burning a single drop of gasoline.
Of course, the Tesla Supercharger network is only compatible with the Tesla Model S 60 kWh and 85 kWh versions, so buyers of other pure electric vehicles, such as the Nissan Leaf or Honda Fit EV, can’t take advantage of it. Still, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk’s insistence that electric vehicles are the path forward is being exceptionally demonstrated, and the installation of a network of free-access electric vehicle fast-charging stations is part of that demonstration.
The beauty of the Tesla Supercharger is that it bypasses the onboard charging system, feeding up to 120 kW of electricity directly into the Tesla Model S battery pack. Some of these are even solar-powered. In just about half-an-hour, up to 80% charge and available range, can get your car ready for the next leg of the trip. Incidentally, this is about the same amount of time the typical human pit-stop requires, judging from the average family’s refueling, bathroom breaks, and souvenir-buying needs.
Last year, Tesla Motors announced that some 98% of the United States, as well as parts of Canada and Mexico, would be accessible by the Tesla Model S and the Tesla Supercharger network, by 2015. Tesla Motors’ rollout of the network has been lagging, but one significant milestone has been reached. When all is said and done, there will be hundreds of Superchargers across the country but, with the 70th station installed, a fully-electric Tesla Supercharger-enabled trip is possible, albeit perhaps not the most direct route from New York City to Los Angeles.
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