Two major US automakers have chosen to streamline their new vehicle offerings and make them compatible with Tesla’s Supercharger network following the company’s decision to relinquish its exclusive charging port patent. This move marks a significant industry-wide reconciliation and is anticipated to generate a substantial increase in Tesla’s charging income.
Traditionally, the proliferation of EVs has been marred by a myriad of charging plug standards, creating consumer confusion and escalating infrastructure costs. This problem is particularly evident in areas such as Taiwan, where the EV adoption rate is relatively low, yet the region is home to three slow-charging and four fast-charging standards. Third-party charging companies are now ensuring that new fast-charging stations are equipped with at least CCS1 and CCS2 plugs to accommodate this diversity and meet consumer demand.
Meanwhile, the situation in the US is reversed. Tesla’s recent decision to make its charging port patent public, along with rebranding itself as the North American Charging Standard (NACS), signals a shift in the American auto industry landscape. Automotive giants such as Ford and General Motors have adopted NACS, with all their EVs produced from 2024 onwards being equipped with this standard plug, to easily facilitate the use of Tesla’s extensive charging network.
The NACS plug, in addition to its lower cost and more streamlined design, provides the added benefit of allowing owners to access Tesla’s globally dominant Supercharger network. This breakthrough resolves a problem for many EV owners—without incurring significant costs—making it an excellent move for the industry’s leading manufacturers.
Although Tesla’s opening of its Supercharger stations may seem counterproductive in a competitive market, the company’s mission has always been to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport. This substantial industry compromise aligns well with Tesla’s ethos. Moreover, increasing the utilization of Superchargers translates to tangible benefits.
Piper Sandler analysts project that as the two auto manufacturers ramp up their EV production in the coming years, with annual sales forecasted to surpass one million units, Tesla’s revenue from these non-Tesla EVs could increase by US$3 billion by 2030. This figure is expected to ascend rapidly, potentially reaching US$5.4 billion by 2032.
This projection could even be a conservative estimate, given the current trajectory of the EV industry. Auto manufacturers who fail to equip their EVs with the NACS plug for the US market would miss out on 12,000 charging stations. Following the same logic, Tesla’s plans to open its charging ports and Superchargers in other markets could entice more manufacturers to adopt NACS, subsequently driving more revenue from Supercharger stations.
Tesla’s relentless commitment over the past decade to expand its Supercharger network is proving fruitful, with worldwide growth reaching a rate of 1,000 Superchargers per month. The progress is particularly noticeable in Taiwan, where the number of stations has soared exponentially from fewer than 20 to over 70 in just the span of two years, with projections to exceed 100 soon. This impressive network expansion has established Tesla’s formidable position in Taiwan’s EV market, presenting a steep challenge for competing automakers.
(Image Source: Tesla)