Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA) To Expand Supercharger Network In UK To 20 Locations
It was not long ago that Tesla decided to bring its electric car recharging stations to the UK, with the automaker expected to construct nine Supercharger stations in a span of six months. But, it looks like the company will be fulfilling its promise in just three months, as the Palo Alto-based automaker recently decided to expand its UK presence by covering 20 locations for its Supercharger stations.
To expand electric vehicle (EV) business internationally, Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk been promoting the Model S. The billionaire hopes that the electric sedan will be driven all across the world, which would benefit from Tesla’s amazingly quick charging stations.
It looks like Elon Musk has learned his lesson from the recent debacle in China. While the demand for Model S has been high in they country, drivers have complained about the limited Supercharger stations available. This concern was highlighted by Mr. Musk at the Detroit Auto Show earlier this month, as the mastermind behind the all electric Tesla revealed that the company would not be able to meet its 2020 profitability outlook due to the disappointing performance in China.
This update evidently didn’t please investors, as the Tesla stock dropped 6% during the following day trading. In response, the Tesla CEO has redoubled his efforts to construct more charging stations for the company’s EVs.
Providing additional support and infrastructure for these stations is probably the biggest growth hurdle for the US automaker – similar to the chicken and egg problem. EVs are useless unless they are supported by fast charging facility.
It takes two to three hours for electric cars to replenish their lithium ion electric batteries from standard public charging station – a little bit too much of a wait. However, at Tesla’s Supercharger stations, EV owners can charge 80% of their car batteries in just half an hour.
According to the latest reports, Tesla is extending its Supercharger facilities to several areas in the UK, including Exmouth and Northampton. The automaker will also be building Supercharger at Sainsbury’s locations in Winchester and Bristol.
This could be seen as a move to scare off other EV competitors in the emerging market, especially General Motors Company (NYSE:GM), who is set to release the Chevy Spark later this year. GM recently expanded the availability of city car Chevy Spark EV in Maryland, after it proved to be a success in Oregon and California. By expanding its charging station network, Tesla might win over the UK population and help Elon Musk achieve his goal of selling mass market electric cars. The automaker has plans to release the low-priced Model 3 by the end of 2017, which will have a starting price of $35,000.
Tesla stock traded down 0.78% on Friday, closing at $203.60.