China is the world’s largest automobile market, with carmakers considering the Asian economic powerhouse as one of the holy grails of the auto industry. This is one of the reasons why America’s premier EV firm, Tesla, has been hard at work in its attempts to breach and saturate the massive and undoubtedly lucrative Chinese auto market.
Unfortunately for Tesla, a small problem exists with its vehicles — the charging ports for the Model S and Model X are incompatible with China’s GB/T DC fast charging standard. Thus, while Tesla’s EVs are famous for their capability to be charged quickly, they simply do not work with the majority of China’s standard fast charging stations.
That is, of course, until now. In an announcement on Monday, Tesla announced that it would soon be rolling out Model S and Model X units in China that are equipped with not one, but two charging ports. One of the ports is for Tesla’s proprietary Supercharger network, and the other is for China’s GB/T DC fast charging standard, as noted in a Teslarati report.
In a lot of ways, simply adding a dedicated charging port to the Model S and Model X is a simple and direct solution to an otherwise needlessly complicated problem. China, after all, is ready to be saturated with electric vehicles, with the Asian economic powerhouse announcing that it would eventually be phasing out ICE vehicles altogether. Thus, for all intents and purposes, Tesla’s cars are practically tailor-fit for the country — if only its chargers were compatible with the country’s standards by default.
Fortunately, this particular inconvenience has been completely addressed by the American EV firm. With an additional charging port in place, Tesla owners in China could either charge their vehicles through the carmaker’s Supercharger network or through the common GB/T DC fast charging stations installed across the country.
The addition of another charging port for the Model S and Model X does have some trade-offs, however. The Model S and Model X’s motorized charging port that’s cleverly hidden in the EV’s taillight housing, for one, has been removed. Fortunately, customers who have already purchased a Tesla in China would be given charging port adaptors at no extra charge, as stated in a Gas2 report.
China is heading full speed ahead into an ICE-free future, with the Asian economic superpower expecting to install as many as 12,000 electric vehicle-charging points nationwide by 2020. Tesla, for its part, has also committed to building as many as 1,000 Superchargers in the country by the end of this year.
While Tesla has already announced that Model S and Model X vehicles released in China would adopt the dual charging port feature, it remains unknown if the Tesla Model 3, the company’s mass-market EV, would also have the same charging port setup.
[Featured Image by AuKirk/Shutterstock]