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Supercharging and Road Trips...

I’ve owned a M3SR+ for about 10 months now, but my wife and I have not been on any long hauls. We briefly and casually considered a Philly-to-Naples, FL trip (1200 miles each way) in November, but life got in the way (feels like the births of grandchildren have been non-stop for the last 2 years - make hay while the sun shines, I guess). I was a bit concerned about the area around Savannah, GA. I’ve seen posts in various places that characterize this location as “troublesome,” either due to traffic (because it’s in the airport) or Tesla congestion (stalls full, waiting lines depending on arrival time). Apparently, the spacing of the super chargers in that part of the I-95 corridor makes Savannah practically obligatory at least for SR+ owners traveling between Philly and Florida. We might give that trip further consideration this fall. It was in planning the trip that I learned the wisdom of more frequent charging stops and charging just enough to reach the next SC with a bit of safety cushion so as to maximize charging current, thus minimizing total charge time for the trip. This strategy appeared to cut an hour off our travel agenda (I think I used “A Better Travel Planner” to plot out our trip - by default, it uses this strategy to minimize charge hours).

In the mean time, we did get a chance for a day-trip to Cape May, NJ (a beach resort community historically popular among Philly-area residents) in early September, made much more convenient by the recent and much-anticipated opening (early- to mid-summer 2019) of the Cape May Courthouse Supercharger. This allowed us to take our traditional trek down Rt. 47 (the more rural and scenic bay shore side of the southern New Jersey peninsula) instead of having to take a less scenic route down the eastern (ocean) shore to access the supercharger near Absecon or Atlantic City. We’re about 100 miles from Cape May, in round numbers. As a fairly recent Tesla owner, my range anxiety had not yet entirely faded, plus we intended to drive to quite a few places in and around CM, making the trip a bit tight on a nominal 240 mile charge without a supercharger visit. The charging station is a bit off the beaten path, in a suburban shopping center a few miles off Rt. 47 a bit south of Reed’s Beach. There is a bank with an ATM (very high fees, though - I think it was $4.00, IIRC), a supermarket, and a number of other stores. There is a McDonald’s nearby (bathroom facilities). There was no one else there in the morning, so we got a fast charge rate. I stopped back again in the evening on the way home (as I said, range anxiety at that point) and it was more than half full, so slower charging. That was the first time I’d had to sheepishly back in next to someone and share their power (V2 charger - sorry, Dude).

Finished our day with seafood at The Crab [email protected] Island, sunset at Sunset Beach in Cape May Point, then on the way back up Rt. 47 we stopped at Little Danny’s just north of “da Villas” and got milkshakes to drink at the charging station before our final leg home. I’m actually looking forward to a really long trip now more than ever. It feels like embarking on an adventure.
We did nearly the same trip, DC area to Winterhaven, Fla, via Orlando, this past Spring Break in our Model 3 mid-range with our kids in the back seat. Best road trip car, Kids loved the glass roof and had fun spotting the super chargers. Road trip with kids means more breaks anyways which can be timed with charging stops and it really does not make the trip longer.

The only tight stretch is on 95 from Santee super charge to Kingsland super charger (~207 miles) we skipped Savannah airport super charger midway because I read on PlugShare that it gets crowded. Make sure your at 100% SOC when leaving Santee and get the Fried Oyster Po’Boy at Clark’s, you won’t be disappointed. We took lacrosse sticks and tossed the ball around if we had an extra 10 min at a charging stop. Kingsland has good take out BBQ.

You can leave Santee with 100% SOC and see if you need to stop at Savannah. I see there are other level 2 options near Savannah - Or time your travel so you over night in Savannah at a hotel with level 2 charging. That way your ready to go in the morning.


Active Member
Aug 26, 2019
In my SR+, 210 miles would be a nail-biter depending on temp and wind. I drive conservatively and generally get between 170 and 180 Wh/mi on my I-95 trips from the southwest Philly burbs to the northeast burbs in calm air at 60F. I might make it.

There is no problem the SR+ doing road trips. You will in some cases need to lower your speed to 55-65 miles per hour, if there is a large gap in chargers. The car does warn you what speed you need to take.

Use this tool to calculate the stops.
A Better Routeplanner
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I was a bit concerned about the area around Savannah, GA.

This route appears to have just gotten a lot easier. → New Tesla V3 Supercharger Unlocks Southern I-95 Travel

I’m actually looking forward to a really long trip now more than ever. It feels like embarking on an adventure.

Mixed feelings here… Taking a long trip in my original 2010 Roadster was a bit too much adventure, with about 200 miles range from its aging battery, no access to Supercharger stations whatsoever, plus the general noise and harshness of the vehicle. It’s an incredibly fun car to drive on twisty little roads, but a long stretch on the highway just becomes tiring after a while.

And now I have the Model S Long Range Plus with 402 miles, and it doesn’t look like there’s going to be any challenge whatsoever. It was made for road trips.

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