Tesla’s new charging network will halve waiting times


The company says that thousands of new Superchargers will come online in 2019; it doesn't stipulate that all of these will be V3 Superchargers, but it would be unlike Tesla not to deliver its most advanced version. The next-generation charging station looks identical to the company's existing Supercharger V2 stations, save for thinner, liquid-cooled cables on the newer units. It's called the V3 Supercharger, and it can support up to 250kW per vehicle, from a cabinet that's rated at 1MW.

Tesla said V3 is an entirely new architecture for supercharging, and aims to cut down the amount of time customers spend charging by 50 percent. Boiling that down to real-world rates, the new chargers will push 75 miles of range into a vehicle in just 5 minutes.

Tesla says that only the Model 3 will be updated to support the maximum charge rate of 250 kW, at least for now.

The first non-beta V3 Superchargers will break ground next month in the U.S., with Europe and Asia-Pacific regions to follow in the fourth quarter of the year. 145 kW is the charging rate of a current shared pair of Tesla's Superchargers, so the fix seems to be a simple software unlocking of the max speed of a single vehicle charging on a shared pair.

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Supercharging V3 isn't as quick as CEO Elon Musk suggested when he called the 350 kw peak of CCS charging at the time "a children's toy". The Model Y SUV, due to be revealed next week, will likely also be able to use the system because it shares technical elements with the Model 3 saloon.

Tesla's Supercharger V3 was unveiled on a rainy night at a private event in Fremont, California on Wednesday.

The rollout of the V3 Supercharging network will take until the end of the year and allow twice as many cars each day to charge. The first V3 Supercharger sites in Europe and Asia are due in the final quarter of the year.

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