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Fixed or Variable Supercharging Costs?

Discussion in 'Supercharging & Charging Infrastructure' started by MajorCuddles, Nov 13, 2019.

  1. MajorCuddles

    MajorCuddles Member

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    Hi! I'm sorry for the newb question; I didnt see a recent intuitive post when searching this forum... I transitioned from Model X with unlimited supercharging to Model 3 and just trying to understand the pay per use pricing model.

    1. Tesla Support seems to show a fixed USA Tier 2 Rate of $0.28/kWh here: Supercharging
    2. This third party Teslanomics page shows state-variable pricing: Tableau Public
    3. And just for giggles, this Tesla page shows an assumed cost of $0.26/kWh: Supercharger | Tesla

    Not trying to bash Tesla pricing at all! I think the business model is fair and more about the service of high speed charging... I'm just trying to understand how pay per use is billed today... Thanks! :)
     
  2. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Well-Known Member

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    It is kind of confusing.
    It's not. Unfortunately that page is terrible in not explaining what that is. That is an average across the country.

    When they first made Superchargers for pay, they did make the rates different per state. And that page on Tesla's site above used to show a drop down box with state by state what the pricing was in each one. Now, they replaced it with just averages, which is less useful.

    What they actually have now, is different pricing per each location, even within states. This can make some sense in some areas where different regions of a state have different utilities with different energy sources and pricing. These prices are not listed on the website, but they are displayed in the car when you are approaching or at a station.

    Well, with each site having different pricing, someone has to pick some number that is kind of an average of the averages.

    Unfortunately, they can't be completely consistent and straightforward with this, because of annoying state laws that affect all of the charging network companies. They would like to be able to charge directly metered per kWh of energy. But there are still several states that have stupid laws that say only the electric utilities have the right to sell electricity within this state. Other private companies are not allowed to--period. So Chagepoint, Tesla, and others have to charge per minute for use of their resources, so they are getting around that forbidding of "charging for electricity".

    That can make quite a difference, though, if you are paying a rate per minute, but you are getting drastically different power levels delivering different amounts of energy per minute. So Tesla has tried to make that reasonable by having a lower cost if you are at a lower power level (below 60kW) and a higher cost if you are above that 60kW. So that is what the Tier1 and Tier2 cost rates are. But they only have those in states where they have to charge per minute.

    Clear as mud?
     
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  3. mociaf9

    mociaf9 Active Member

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    #3 mociaf9, Nov 13, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2019
    1. The numbers directly from Tesla on the "Supercharging" page now are national averages, so some sites will have higher and some lower prices. Unfortunately, the only location to find the exact pricing for any individual location is by clicking on it in the car's navigation system.
    2. Tesla used to price supercharging on a state by state basis but they have since changed to individual location pricing. Teslanomics' page is just out of date.
    3. Some jurisdictions have laws which dictate that only electric utilities, which are regulated, can legally sell electricity. For superchargers in those areas, Tesla has avoided the major hassle and restrictions of trying to become a regulated utility by selling access to their charging service on a time spent basis instead of selling the electricity that is delivered. This is why some supercharger locations are billed on a per minute basis instead of by kWh delivered. But the amount of time spent charging is highly affected by the charging rate (kW), which is variable. If not accounted for, this could lead to some very unfair pricing where two different cars were charged the same amount but one got 50 kWh and the other got only 10 kWh of charge just because the second car was on a slower supercharger. To adjust for this, Tesla uses the pricing tiers.
    4. For locations that charge by the kWh delivered, there are no tiers. It doesn't matter whether you charge fast or slow, they are just measuring the amount of energy delivered.
    5. The $0.26/kWh used in the savings calculator is probably also just a bit out of date. I think that's what the national average for kWh pricing locations was before the last price hike. But when taking a true average of all locations which includes the effective pricing of most supercharging sessions at per minute locations it's still a fair number.

    Edit: I see I basically just repeated what Rocky said above.
     
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  4. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Well-Known Member

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    Yeah...so I'm wondering why I got a disagree from someone else for explaining the rates. It didn't seem controversial.
     
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  5. mociaf9

    mociaf9 Active Member

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    Easy enough to click on the wrong icon without realizing.
     
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  6. MajorCuddles

    MajorCuddles Member

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    Thank you all! I feel a lot smarter!
     

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