Tesla is famous for doing things differently. That’s not just because the company likes to be contrary, but because it often believes it’s found a better way, and that’s certainly the case with the company’s proprietary fast charging standard. Tesla is steadily building its own network of Supercharger DC fast charging stations across the US and Europe.
However, there’s already an extensive network of public chargers that use the CHAdeMO fast charging standard, which is used by the LEAF, i-MiEV and a few other EV models. There were 160 CHAdeMO fast-charging stations in the US at the beginning of 2013, and Nissan has announced plans for hundreds more.
To allow Model S drivers to tap into these charging points, Tesla has announced plans to offer a CHAdeMO adaptor. The plug adaptor is expected to go on sale in the US this winter at a price of $1,000. Adaptors for European and Asian markets will be introduced later.
A third fast charging standard, the Combined Charging System (CCS, aka SAE Combo) is just beginning to come on the scene – the first CCS-compatible charger recently opened in San Diego. American and German models such as the 2014 BMW i3 and 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV will use CCS. Presumably, Tesla will also offer a CCS adaptor at some point, but it has said nothing about it yet.