Rising Supercharging Fees Suck, but they are not the end of the world… cough… autoevolution…

I understand why drivel like this hackjob from autoevolution titled “EVs No Longer an Economic Alternative to ICEs As Supercharging Rates Go Through the Roof” exist. The answer is clicks. So usually I ignore the poor math, logic, reasoning, and improper use of data because it’s generally better to just ignore stupid, than engage with it. But today, I’m rolling off the opiates, so generosity of spirit isn’t a priority ATM.

It’s tough to know where to start with this one (I’m not linking it, but have included the title if you want to find it).

  1. There are non-Tesla EVs <gasp/>. This might be the hardest thing to wrap your head around, so sit down Cristian. Superchargers only work with Tesla BEVs (battery electric vehicle). So if you have a BEV (or PHEV) from ANY OTHER OEM, rising Supercharger rates have exactly zero direct impact on your charging experience. Now, it is true that Tesla absolutely dominates the BEV market, so I guess we can sort of understand where the sentiment might come from, but that doesn’t make it any less ignorant.
  2. If your primary charging approach is using a Supercharger, or frankly any DC fast charging, you are doing it wrong. It’s not awesome for the battery, and it is more expensive than it needs to be, even before the rates started creeping up. But more importantly, it demonstrates a terminal fixation on the legacy model of fueling. You know, where you go somewhere special, periodically, to hang out for a while (usually 10-15 min), while filling up. There is definitely a place for that model with EVs, but it should be the exception, not the norm. Generally, it’s better for everyone (you, battery, wallet, etc) to do either Level 1 or Level 2 charging while the car is hanging out in a place it’s going to be for a while. Like your home, office, the mall, a public library, restaurant, coffee shop, whatever. Often times, these chargers are free (to you, there is a not-free cost that someone is absorbing). The vast majority of my charging is done in my driveway. I generally spend about $20-25/month charging my car. Rates are low where I live ($0.08kWh) so that helps make my point, but even if we doubled that number its still hella economical Cristian. I mean, have you looked at gas prices lately?
  3. Talking about gas prices, let’s do some math. Cristian uses $0.58kWh, and I don’t feel like fact checking that number because it doesn’t really matter. If I were to fill up my car; 80kWh * $0.58 = $46.40. If gas is $5/gallon, that’s 9.28 gallons. Which in a car that gets 25 MPG = 232 miles, which is either less than I would get from 80kWh, or if we’re being generous, about the same (2.9miles/kWh), unless it’s really cold, but that would impact ICEmobile’s economy as well so lets just ignore it for now. That’s not armageddon; even ignoring point number 2 (please don’t ignore point number 2 :)).

Where it does hurt, is for those who can’t (or decide not to) do Level 2 charging, and there are valid reasons why someone might not be able to conveniently. Like living in an apartment in a charging dead zone. That’s an infrastructure problem that we need to fix, and hopefully will get fixed fairly quickly. It sucks that we aren’t yet at a point where EV ownership is as net convenient as ICE for apartment dwellers. We need to fix that. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find the percentage of people who have an EV and live in an apartment (the more important number would be those who have an EV, live in an apartment, and don’t have L2 charging onsite), so it’s hard to say how widespread that issue is, but it feels pretty niche in the grand scheme of things.