Tesla's Supercharger Network: Next Stop, World Domination

Tesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA  ) opened its second supercharger station in North Carolina last week, making it possible for Tesla Model S owners to travel for free between Charlotte, N.C.; Richmond, Va.; and Washington, D.C. without ever needing to stop for gas. The electric-car maker is rapidly expanding its supercharger network, which lets Model S drivers charge their EVs free along major highways throughout the United States and Europe.

Source: Tesla 

Charging ahead
Tesla's superchargers are the fastest EV-charging stations available today, and promise to recharge half the capacity of a driver's Model S battery in as little as 20 minutes. For those keeping score at home, that's 20 times faster than most public charging stations. The North Caroline and Virginia stations come on the heels of another supercharger milestone. Last month, Tesla officially launched its West Coast Supercharger Corridor .

This means that Model S drivers can now drive gas-free between San-Diego, Calif., and Vancouver, British Columbia. Now, "more than 99% of Californians and 87% of Oregon and Washington owners are now within 200-miles of a Supercharger," according to Tesla. These stations are also strategically positioned near restaurants and shopping centers, so owners aren't just waiting around for 20 minutes while their cars recharge.

SolarCity (NASDAQ: SCTY  ) is providing the solar panels for each supercharger station. On top of this, SolarCity and Tesla specially designed these solar power systems to put more energy back into the grid than is consumed by Tesla drivers recharging their cars. Cool, right? Better yet, it's also cost-effective for Tesla. Thanks to its partnership with SolarCity, and the existing charger capabilities in its electric cars, Tesla can deploy supercharger stations inexpensively .

Electrifying the switch to EVs
Tesla currently has 34 supercharger stations up and running in the United States, and six so far in Europe. Additionally, the California-based company is on track to have stations covering 80% of the U.S. population and parts of Canada as soon as next year. In 2015, Tesla's supercharger coverage will reach 98% of the U.S. population, as well as parts of the Great White North.

Tesla is also expanding its network globally. The automaker now plans to cover 100% of the population of Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium, Austria, Denmark, and Luxembourg with superchargers by the end of 2014 . In addition, 90% of the population in England, Wales and Sweden will have stations nearby.

This is an incredible feat for Tesla, particularly because it's only been a year since the EV maker first introduced its supercharger concept to the world . One of the main reasons more drivers don't switch to electric cars today is the fear of running out of charge. However, the global expansion of Tesla's supercharger network should continue to erode so-called "range anxiety" in the years ahead.

Supercharge your portfolio
It's no coincident that Tesla is one of the best growth stocks this year. The company has beaten incredible odds to get to where it is today, and it should give shareholders more reasons to smile as it ramps up production of its Model S in the quarters to come. However, with the stock having gained nearly 300 % year to date, investors can find more rewarding growth stocks elsewhere.

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  • Report this Comment On November 19, 2013, at 10:21 AM, CaptainLee wrote:

    Jump on this train. Ignore the nay sayers ! Tesla is the way of the future !

  • Report this Comment On November 19, 2013, at 11:29 AM, hunter3203 wrote:

    So what's the time for a complete charge? A half charge will get you a further 130 miles in the 85kwh version of the Model S. What if you aren't travelling on major interstates? Would we really consider having 50 or 100 gas stations as having coverage for the US?

  • Report this Comment On November 19, 2013, at 12:38 PM, pondee619 wrote:

    hunter3203:

    If you could refill your gas car at home every night, how many times would you need to go to a gas station? How many gas statiions are there in your neighborhood? On my way to work, a 15 minute drive on local streets in northern NJ, I pass no less than 6 gas stations. Refuling each night at home, no competing stations looking for my business, 250 miles between "fill-ups", 100 stations just might cover the country. Remember, you only need the station when you are going more than 125 miles from you home (on a round trip). How many times a year does the average driver do that? A 250 mile round trip each business day during a year is over 60,000 miles a year. Who puts that kind of mileage on their vechile?

    Again, how mant times would you need a gas station if every morning you started the day with a full tank?

  • Report this Comment On November 19, 2013, at 2:06 PM, chuckbob57 wrote:

    There are CNG refilling stations that allow a person to refill at home and go 250+ miles and with dual fuel get another 350 with gas. See 2014 CNG Impala

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