There was once a time when some might have said that there are already enough Superchargers on the road. But with now over half a million Teslas driving around, it seems like the company is having issues expanding their network fast enough.
We first saw Tesla take action by almost doubling Supercharger costs. This worked as intended and had owners reconsidering charging at home since it would cost less. But with more and more electric cars being delivered, they took action once more and implemented over-time fees. $1 for each minute your Tesla is connected after it has already reached 100%. This was drastic and had many upset. You no longer had time to leave your car charging and go eat at the nearby restaurant. This rule and fine is only in place when said Supercharger location is full or close to.
These steps were necessary as lines at stations started to form. For a while, Tesla offered free lifetime Supercharging with some of their vehicles. That was later changed for new purchasers and now stands at 5,000 miles free for every referral earned.
Things started to get worse once Tesla slowed down their network expansion. More and more cars were being built with the network almost at a halt. We now know that was due to the imminent Supercharger V3 and expansion should be back on track. But even with V3 and its x2 charging speeds, it seems like Tesla is still worried about lines at stations starting to form.
The latest news comes from an internal memo obtained by Electrek. Tesla will cap your max charge to just 80% of its capacity at busy stations.
Today, we released a new Supercharger feature that will limit owners’ State of Charge (SOC) to 80% at select high-traffic sites.
This will only affect 17% of stations in the U.S. 8% of which are permanently limited and the other 9% will be dependent on its traffic.
“80% SOC Limit will be enforced 24/7 at all impacted sites. Please note, some sites will have 80% SOC limits enforced on a permanent basis while others will only be enforced on national holidays and to accommodate large regional events (e.g. Coachella).”
The majority of Tesla owners will not be affected much by this. You should not really ever go above an 80% charge regardless if you want to maintain battery longevity. That comes recommended by Tesla themselves.
But it seems like some have been abusing the system and their battery since Tesla sees this as a major factor. The company claims that with this new charge cap and the implementation of Supercharger V3, this should result in a 34% improvement at affected stations. Its hard to say how much of that is the new charge speed and how much is the new charge cap.