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Snake Chargers and Autopilot interaction.

While the snake charger is a nice toy for Elon's garage and I'm sure they could sell them even at pretty high prices it wasn't immediately obvious to me what serious purpose might be served by saving the 30 seconds or so it takes to manually plug the car into a charger.

Later it started to seem like a critical technology. If you have a fleet of truly autonomous Teslas you need a way for the fleet management software to put cars on and off chargers without human involvement.

That's still at least several years off, but as soon as the Auto Pilot is upgraded for low speed "Valet Mode" operation without a driver (on private property) there is an important use. Right now, Superchargers are dependent on humans to plug in and move cars. That creates inefficiencies. The more cars Tesla sells the more crowded Superchargers may become, despite reasonable efforts by the company to add stations to accommodate demand. If Tesla cars could simply park near a Supercharger slot (with the system notified of a charging request) the system could itself move cars as needed and plug/unplug them. Drivers could be updated on their phones about their cars current status. This might be even more useful for urban chargers (which might be separate from the free Supercharger system). This would allow a paid parking location to also handle charging without providing chargers at every parking space (which would of necessity spend most of their time inactive). Some kind of urban charger system is important to places where owners often don't have private garages like China (or NYC).

Snake Chargers + Autopilot would allow the cars to queue up and charge themselves when parked nearby. Just as important they could unplug and free up the space by the charger when finished. It would work on private property under controlled circumstances so it might be an appropriate early practical application of driverless autopilot. It would definitely be cool to watch.
Last edited:


Active Member
Nov 3, 2012
My bet is the "snake chargers" will make it possible for people to push a button that tells their Tesla to go to the nearest charging station for a recharge. This will reduce the amount of time a person "needs" to spend at a charging station to 0 minutes. The same function will allow people to "summon" their Tesla when it is needed.

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