Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) is planning to open its charging network to other vehicle brands later in the year, and this will mark a huge inflection point in the EV sector. Should the move come to fruition, it will accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles.
Tesla is not dominating the EV charging network space anymore
The electric car maker has been controlling its plugs because it could, considering that there was no incentive for those building or operating chargers when it ventured into the market. As a result, Tesla made its own with the understanding that electricity was a critical as the electric car. In short, plugs sold EV cars, and as long as other EV makers such as Nissan and Chevrolet didn’t have them, then consumers had more reason to purchase a Tesla.
However, with the coming Tesla parade fighters, there was a surge in competing EV charging networks such as EVgo and Electricity America. And although Tesla’s charging network is one of the best compared to rivals, it is not by much.
For instance, in Canada and the US, Tesla has 1,176 fast-charging stations relative to 5,113 stations run by rivals, according to the Department of Energy’s recent tally. But Tesla plugs are 20% more and scattered widely across the country.
Tesla facing growing competition domestically
However, it seems the place where Tesla is likely to ease things is in Europe, where there is intense competition and stands to benefit subsidies for agnostic plugs. Currently, Tesla controls 16% of the fast-charging network in Europe, which is not surprising considering most of its cars in Europe have generic CCS charging ports instead of the proprietary Tesla dock.
In the home market, competitors have forced Tesla’s hand as rivals establish partnerships through interoperability agreements allowing customers to plug into any network. For instance, Ford’s hodgepodge called FordPass has over 16,000 stations that include those run by EVgo and Electrify America.