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Question for non-Nav folks re Supercharger range

For the folks who don't have turn by turn navigation in their Model S can you:

1. Select a destination and at least get information about which superchargers are on the way and how much charge you'll have when you arrive? Or.

2. Directly input a supercharger that you know is on your route and get the same info.

It may be a dumb question but it seems without this basic function, range anxiety would be a real issue.



Moderator, Supercharger Hunter
Global Moderator
Mar 17, 2015
Lafayette, CA, USA
I imagine you wouldn’t have either of these without turn by turn directions, but you could get much of the information in your two points by using one of the various third party trip planning tools. In fact I usually don’t use the in car trip planner farther than the next charging stop.

Not having the tech package might be fine for a car that’s only being driven locally.

No, you can't get directions to a supercharger (or anywhere). You have a map to look at (assuming the car has cell service), but no directions, or state-of-charge forecasting. You can however use abetterrouteplanner.com (slowly) on the browser and get routing and SOC prediction.
I have a car with the non-tech package. the MCU is literally just a big google map with destination information. The stat was something like 3% of all Teslas produced (when this was an option) didn't have tech package.

you can pay/maybe request? for Tesla to enable it, its an option within the firmware, all cars have access to it... some just have it disabled. If you're buying CPO for instance, perhaps make it a point of sale.
The navigation system requires additional hardware: a gyro board and SD card with the Navigon maps... and the software change you suggest.
I am 99.99999999% sure that all comes on the boards in pre 2013 models where the navi was a build option. I'd be interested to learn otherwise (after cracking open two MCUs, including my non-tech one)


Well-Known Member
Jun 5, 2013
Austin, TX
I am 99.99999999% sure that all comes on the boards in pre 2013 models where the navi was a build option. I'd be interested to learn otherwise (after cracking open two MCUs, including my non-tech one)
No, the boards were different in cars without tech package. (That’s what I was told in 2013, anyway). That’s why enabling nav was never an option similar to enabling autopilot.
I also have no on-board nav.
Even though the superchargers deemed out of range are grey, remember that all offered distances are straight-line; or "as the crow flies." It will usually be a further drive than the reported distance, so pay attention if the distance your aiming for is close to your remaining range.

A couple things people with nav may not know about non nav cars:
The "Where is..." voice command works great even without nav.
I was surprised that my car can issue a warning similar to, "You are about to drive beyond the range of known chargers." I was not expecting that, and it scared me a bit the first time. (It was overly conservative and I had enough to reach my intended supercharger.)

As far as hardware goes, I heard early on that the MCU was different between tech and non-tech, but admittedly just hearsay.

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