Elon Musk has, once again, utilised our age of social media to its fullest extent this week, taking to Twitter to disperse a little information on what may be in store for Tesla.
When Electrek writer Fred Lambert queried the Tesla boss about solar panel installations at existing Supercharger stations on Twitter, Musk used the opportunity to include “Supercharger V3,” the first mention of an update to the Supercharger product.
Pressing on, the reporter then asked Musk about possible power outputs. As it stands, Tesla’s Superchargers are able to provide 145kW of juice. Recently, several automakers banded together to develop a fast-charger network for Europe, with a targeted power output of 350kW. So when the matter of output was posed to the CEO with that figure, he responded by saying, “A mere 350kW… what are you referring to, a children’s toy?”
Musk’s cockiness aside, Tesla has been aiming to reduce the amount of time needed to juice-up their cars since the introduction of the Supercharger in 2012. The amount of time needed to recharge an electric car tends to be the second bone of contention to EV owners (after range anxiety, of course), and Tesla CTO JB Straubel spoke then about dramatically reducing recharge times. “It’s not going to happen in a year form now. It’s going to be hard. But I think we can get down to five to ten minutes.”
The new Supercharger may be able to achieve those times, depending on just how much power will be flowing through them. Musk’s ‘tweetstorm’ even mentioned Australia, with one user asking about off-grid chargers for “remote areas” of our country. Musk responded by alluding to that possibility, pairing solar arrays and Powerpack power storage devices.
Should ‘Supercharger V3’ be as revolutionary as we believe it could be, it would likely explain why Tesla has discontinued the ‘battery swap’ service (allowing a depleted battery to be swapped with a full one) that was previously offered to consumers.