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Tesla Motors to drop battery swap program

Tesla Motors to drop battery swap program image

Text: Marcus De Guzman / Photos: Tesla | posted June 16, 2015 06:30

Tesla Motors to abandon battery replacement program, Superchargers fast enough

Battery swapping in future Tesla automobiles may not happen after all as the company plans to abandon the program since their Superchargers are fast enough to replenish a vehicle's battery.

According to company CEO Elon Musk, their Supercharger stations are quick enough to completely recharge the battery that the swap program will just be redundant and senseless.

“The Superchargers are fast enough that if you're driving from L.A. to San Francisco, and you start a trip at 9 AM, by the time you get to, say, noon, you want to stop, and you want to stretch your legs, hit the restroom, grab a bite to eat, grab a coffee, and be on your way, and by that time, the car is charged and ready to go, and it's free. So, it's like, why would you do the pack swap? It doesn't make much sense,” said Musk.

First launched near the end of 2014, Tesla Motors' battery swap pilot program was intended to allow users to have their depleted battery replaced with a fully charged unit in as little as 3 minutes. Customers will have to schedule an appointment beforehand while the cost of the battery replacement will be “slightly less than a full tank of gasoline for a premium sedan” according to Tesla Motors.

The company originally invited select Model S owners in California for a demonstration on their battery replacement program, but the company has now invited every Tesla owner in the USA to check out the program. Elon Musk is however still sure that only a few customers will be interested in the program.