Tesla to Offer CHAdeMO Adaptor on Model S Sold in Japan; Is U.S. Next?

By · January 14, 2013

CHAdeMO connector

The CHAdeMO connector.

Tesla Motors recently announced that the Model S will go on sale in Japan in mid-2013 and when it launches there, the electric sedan will be equipped with a connector that allows owners to use Japan's vast network of more than 1,900 CHAdeMO quick-charge stations.

The news was first reported by the Japanese blog MONOist, and then picked up by Greencarreports.com.

CHAdeMO is standard equipment on most electric vehicles sold in Japan, but Tesla elected to use its own proprietary connector, which means that U.S. owners of the Model S have not been able to use CHAdeMO chargers. Tesla touts its Supercharger network as far superior to CHAdeMO.

Model S connector

The Tesla Model S connector.

Tesla has not indicated if it will make the CHAdeMO adapter available in the U.S., but with the part soon to be in production, it would be a logical step.

Meanwhile, German and American automakers are beginning to roll out plug-in vehicles with their own "combo cord" connector and protocol. There's little evidence that the debate about Quick Charging standards will be resolved anytime soon.

The availability of the Tesla CHAdeMO adapter reveals not only the technical feasibility of adapting various Quick Chargers to different cars, something that has been disputed, but the possibility that eventually EVs will come with adapter kits (much like those used by world travelers plugging in electrical devices when traveling overseas).


· · 5 years ago

Good to see, and an interesting combination of news. If Tesla makes this available in the US, I wonder if they will allowed access to Nissan's chargers.


In the "QC War", it looks like CHAdeMO isn't going away any time soon.

· · 5 years ago

I would have been happy if they just offered a no cost changeout of the TSL-01 with the roadster and had a no cost option of a 30 amp j1772. I've already had to changeout my adapter cord seeing as a few times the thing has gotten stuck on it.

· · 5 years ago

I'd like to see Tesla release the CHAdeMO adaptor in the US (or worldwide). If they have gone through the trouble of developing it for Japan, I see no reason not to make it available (for a cost, with appropriate caveats) to anyone willing to pay for it.

We currently have 40 CHAdeMO stations here in Oregon with three more "planted" and about to power on. Tesla will not install their network with this density. You could argue that they don't need to because of the range and short charge time. But if I have to make a 30 or 40 mile detour to swing by the supercharger, that is not convenient. This would be especially frustrating, if there were CHAdeMO stations along the direct route.

The same goes for the SAE Combined Charging System (CCS) when it is deployed. If Tesla are thinking about customer convenience, then I think the right thing to do is says, "We support all of them. We think ours is the best (fastest, free, solar powered, no adaptors needed, no access cards needed...) but our customers are free to use any that they want to."

I don't see this as undermining Tesla's Supercharger network; rather, I see it as supporting their customers. And think about how they could market this coup:

"The Japanese cars can charge at CHAdeMO, but not CCS or Supercharger. The 'Detroit' cars can charge at CCS, but not CHAdeMO or Supercharger. The Tesla vehicles can charge up at ANY of them." The way to win a standards war is to support them all and be the best.

· · 5 years ago

As odd as it may seem. This move by Tesla could breath life and further solidify the Chademo standard in the US if they introduce the connector here. If they don't I'm sure someone will import them anyhow. The more cars using the Chademo L3 units the more likely they will survive.

· · 5 years ago

I have a Tesla S mid-range and am frustrated that I cannot use the high speed charging network already available here in the NW because Tesla has seen fit to create their own proprietary charging system. I got the mid range (60 kw, supposedly 230 mile range) model, expecting that the 90 mile drive to and from the airport to pick up my son should be a breeze. Even with all of the range extending adjustments and driving slow (65 on a 75 mph highway) passed by everything but the semi's I had to hang out at a slow charger for half an hour to squeeze 13 extra miles into my battery to limp back to my garage with just 10 miles of charge left. Tesla needs to get with the system so that it's underperforming battery has something to bail it out on the road.

· · 5 years ago

Vanderk, I have a question for you please. When you say a 90 mile drive, is that the total mileage or is it 90 miles each way? I am purchasing a 60kwhr Tesla (it's on order). Other than that how do you like the car?

· · 5 years ago

To fourex62: It is 90 miles each way to the airport, so 180 miles total. I feel pretty safe driving my 60kw battery S about 150 miles without a lot of worries (as you know, its original rating was for 230 miles). I do try to avoid charging in the Max Range setting to avoid sapping battery life. Using the standard charging setting, it tells me that I have 185 mile range, but I find that the way I drive, I get about 20% less.

For anything more, I would need to have a plan- i.e. extra time and location to have it sit for recharging. The planning is getting easier, as there are several smart phone apps like Recargo and Plugshare that make it pretty easy to figure out where the charging stations are. (I didn't get the Tech package... an on board search may have been available if I had.)

Other than that I do LOVE the car. It took a bit to get used to the straight torque curve acceleration / regenerative deceleration, but now that I am used to it I am addicted and don't like driving with a combustion engine. I also love how quiet the interior is. And that I can accelerate into any available space in a flash. It really is a remarkable car. I cannot imagine any reason that the technology in the Tesla should not someday be a part of virtually every vehicle on the road, at least as a plug in component even of vehicles that want to retain an engine for longer distances.

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