The first Tesla Model 3 owners are starting to discover the costs associated with using the company’s fast charging Supercharger network.
Unlike Tesla’s flagship Model S and Model X vehicles that come bundled with roughly 1,000 miles of free Supercharging each year, unless the vehicle was purchased through Tesla’s referral program which would entitle the buyer to free unlimited Supercharger use, Model 3 buyers must pay for the amount of energy being used at each Supercharger stall.
Early Model 3 owner PTFI shared on Twitter their associated cost for charging at the popular Harris Ranch Supercharger station, located halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. The ‘Supercharger fee’ being charged by Tesla varies by region and by charging tier.
For North America, pricing is fixed within each state and charged per minute and based on a per killowatt-hour rate. For Model 3 owner PTFI, one can see from the tweet that their charge session in California cost $8.60 based on energy usage billed at $.20/kWh. The 43 kWh of energy drawn from Tesla’s Supercharger backs into roughly 167 miles of range, still cheaper than the amount of gas needed to travel the same distance.
Tesla’s Supercharger pricing structure also takes into account a vehicle’s battery state of charge at the time it’s Supercharging, also referred to as a charging tier.
Despite Model 3 drivers needing to pay for Supercharger usage, the convenience of having access to a fast and reliable charging network: one that Tesla has committed to rapidly scaling on a global level, makes it a compelling option to have especially if the price point for charging is cheaper than the cost of refueling a comparable gasoline car.
“Supercharging is simple and convenient—just plug in and charge up. Supercharging history is automatically populated in your Tesla Account showing the credits used or, if applicable, the amount billed. Tesla is committed to ensuring that Supercharger will never be a profit center.” says Tesla.