electrek:

As Tesla prepares to bring the Cybertruck to roads in the US, it seems like Tesla’s charging network is not ready for the pickup truck.

The Cybertruck is going to be a fresh new entry into Tesla’s lineup.

So far, the automaker is only selling sedans and SUVs. A pickup truck is a whole new segment for Tesla, and it comes with its own set of challenges, especially when it comes to charging.

The most obvious is the fact that even though you could tow with other Tesla vehicles, it’s likely going to be a lot more popular with the Cybertruck.

Tesla’s Supercharger stations are not well-designed for parking with a trailer.

In the vast majority of cases, Cybertruck owners towing a trailer will have to unhook before being able to park at a Supercharger stall to charge.

Tesla is clearly aware of the issue, and it is building new stations with a few “pull-through” stalls where you can charge with a trailer without blocking other stations.

They look like this (picture by @VanquishAZ):

This is a perfect solution, but it’s going to be a problem for a while because they are right now located at only a small fraction of Tesla Superchargers in the US.

Hopefully, Tesla enables to search for Superchargers with those stalls in the navigation systems in order to make things easier, but you will still be lucky to find one that is convenient for your route until they become standard at most stations, which could take a few years.

The other problem is the charging speed.

We don’t know yet the size of the Cybertruck’s battery pack, but it is undoubtedly going to be the biggest battery pack Tesla has ever included in a consumer vehicle to date.

That will make charging longer.

The good news is that Tesla confirmed that the Cybertruck works with an 800-volt battery system rather than the current 400-volt system in existing Tesla vehicles.

However, Tesla’s Supercharger network is not 800-volt. The new V4 Superchargers are supposed to enable 800-volt charging, but the new V4 stalls spotted in the US all appear to be connected to V3 400-volt cabinets.

This means that Cybertruck owners won’t be able to take advantage of the faster charging capacity at Supercharger stations.

Like the pull-through issue, I am sure Tesla plans to address that with new 800-volt V4 Supercharger stations, but it is going to be a problem in the meantime.

And that’s a problem that will affect not only Cybertruck owners, but also everyone who uses the Supercharging network because they will keep chargers busy for longer periods of time.

Electrek’s Take

This is not a deal-breaker problem, but it is also not something that Tesla can solve overnight.

I am hoping that Elon addresses it a bit at the event today so we know what Tesla’s plan is, but I think this is going to be a bit of a problem for at least the first year of Cybertruck production.

The good news is that there shouldn’t be that many Cybertrucks produced in the first year, which should help manage the problem.

But either way, it’s something to take into account if you are considering Cybertruck ownership.


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MuskWire TLDR:

As Tesla prepares to release the Cybertruck in the US, it appears that the company’s charging network may not be fully equipped to handle the pickup truck. Unlike Tesla’s current lineup of sedans and SUVs, the Cybertruck presents new challenges when it comes to charging, particularly due to its popularity as a towing vehicle. Tesla’s Supercharger stations are not designed for parking with a trailer, meaning that Cybertruck owners will have to unhook their trailers before being able to charge at a Supercharger stall. Tesla is aware of this issue and is constructing new stations with “pull-through” stalls that allow charging with a trailer without blocking other stations. However, these stations are currently only located at a small fraction of Tesla Superchargers in the US. It is hoped that Tesla will enable a search function in the navigation systems to locate Superchargers with the appropriate stalls, but this may take several years to become standard at most stations. Another challenge is the charging speed. While the size of the Cybertruck’s battery pack is not yet known, it is expected to be the largest ever included in a Tesla vehicle. This will result in longer charging times. While the Cybertruck works with an 800-volt battery system, Tesla’s Supercharger network is not yet equipped for 800-volt charging. The new V4 Superchargers are supposed to enable 800-volt charging, but the ones currently spotted in the US are connected to 400-volt cabinets. This means that Cybertruck owners will not be able to take advantage of the faster charging capacity at Supercharger stations. It is likely that Tesla plans to address this issue with new 800-volt V4 Supercharger stations, but in the meantime, it will be a problem for both Cybertruck owners and other users of the Supercharging network, as it will keep chargers occupied for longer periods of time. This is not a deal-breaker problem, but it is also not something that Tesla can solve overnight. It is expected to be a challenge for at least the first year of Cybertruck production. However, as there will likely not be many Cybertrucks produced in the first year, this should help to manage the problem. Nevertheless, potential Cybertruck owners should take this into account when considering purchasing the vehicle.