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Cost of electricity for Superchargers

Discussion in 'TSLA Investor Discussions' started by MartinAustin, Feb 12, 2015.

  1. MartinAustin

    MartinAustin Active Member

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    Is this posted anywhere, like in their shareholder letters?

    I looked for it in the latest PDF but couldn't find anything that sounded remotely like it. Perhaps it is just hidden inside operating expenses.

    The cost of supplying all the electricity will surely climb year on year; perhaps it's so cheap they have eliminated it from their list of risks, but it seems to me that with S, X and 3 all using them, there could be an enormous bill each year.
     
  2. uselesslogin

    uselesslogin Enthusiast

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    At one point they were tweeting monthly usage and I calculated it out to about 100 miles per month per car. With battery storage at the busier stations I'm sure they can buy lots of cheap power at night and supplement with solar power during the day.

    In theory electricity will be getting a lot cheaper with grid storage and solar panels. It will become a capital expense and then basically free after that. If that doesn't happen they will build the cost of providing electricity at the Superchargers into the cost of replacement battery packs. I think that is the big reason it isn't a huge risk. The batteries will wear out eventually.
     
  3. cpa

    cpa Member

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    It is all a matter of materiality. With revenues in 10 figures, a mid-six figure expense for electricity (which some have posited is really advertising and marketing expense disguised as electricity) is, as we accountants would say, immaterial.
     
  4. jordanthompson

    jordanthompson 2010 2.0 Sport, VIN 0683

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    My understanding is that Tesla will be converting all of the Superchargers to solar, leaving maintenance as the only expense, probably covered by the surplus sold back to the power companies.
     
  5. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

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    It has been discussed in other thread about how the Supercharger solar canopies cannot provide anywhere near enough power to charge large numbers of Teslas per day. They are likely being used to supplement the power supply during the day and for "peak shaving" to reduce utility charges.
     
  6. cpa

    cpa Member

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    Jordan, Cottonwood posited on another thread that the current solar canopy recently installed at Barstow does not even come close to fulfulling the demand to charge there. I agree with you that solar canopies will be installed at many, many sites over the coming years, but I truly believe that their efficacy in charging automobiles will be better suited for augmenting battery back up storage while Tesla charges batteries from the grid during off-peak hours. This smooths out the demand charges, leading to a much lower electricity charge.
     
  7. MikeC

    MikeC Active Member

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    I wonder at what point it would start to make sense to make mini solar farms, kind of like Apple but on a smaller scale. Most inter-city Superchargers are in places where land is pretty cheap.

    Any guesses what their rate per kWh is on average? With the energy storage advantage, maybe they could become a distributed utility, maybe in partnership with SolarCity. Would love to see Tesla take on Edison.
     

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