Tesla addresses Coronavirus in China giving owners free Supercharging amid global outbreak

Tesla Model 3 charging at V3 Supercharger in Jinqiao, Shanghai (Credit: Tesla China via Ray4Tesla/Twitter)

Amid the ongoing public health scare in China sparked by the Coronavirus, Tesla is offering all customers in the Chinese market free Supercharging for an indefinite amount of time to help drivers travel more easily and quickly away from affected areas.

Images shared by Tesla owner @Ray4Tesla show the electric carmaker has issued a notification to its Chinese customers informing them that they will be able to charge their vehicles for free at any of the numerous Superchargers installed across the country.

“To make it easier for you to travel during the coronavirus outbreak, effective today we will temporarily open all Tesla vehicles to be free to charge at the Supercharging station until the epidemic is resolved,” notified Tesla to its customer across China. “We hope that during this extraordinary period, you will be able to replenish electricity efficiently and use your car smoothly when needed. After the epidemic ceases, we will notify you again before resetting your vehicle to its original configuration. We hope to provide you with a modest effort so you can spend this time smoothly. Tesla reserves the right to make the final decision in this event.”

This is not the first time Tesla has shown a gesture of kindness to customers in crisis. In August last year, for example, Tesla offered free Supercharging to customers in Florida who were fleeing the wrath of Hurricane Dorian. The company also delivered over-the-air updates to unlock more range and provide customers several extra miles. Tesla offered the same free Supercharging services in 2018 to customers who were affected by Hurricane Michael. In 2017, the company issued a software update to select vehicles to provide them with more range as Hurricane Irma drew near.

The deadly coronavirus has raised fears of a pandemic following reports that it has claimed at least 106 lives and infected at least 4,515 others across the globe. The US State Department has issued a travel advisory urging Americans to put off all non-essential travel to China. Meanwhile, the Chinese government has closed off the industrial hub of Wuhan, where the outbreak originated, and nearby cities.

Nicole Arce: I write about science and technology that changes the world.
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