Tesla Confirms Model S CHAdeMO Adapter For US Coming This Winter; Pricing Starts at $1,000

4 years ago by Eric Loveday 70

Tesla to CHAdeMO Adapter for North America

Tesla to CHAdeMO Adapter for North America

It’s official.

Tesla to CHAdeMO

Tesla to CHAdeMO

Rumors have persisted for some time now that the Tesla Model S would be able to charge at CHAdeMO stations soon.  Tesla confirmed this to be true for Japan, so we suspected the same would be the case in the US.

Tesla Motors has now made it official.

If you hit up ShopTeslaMotors.com, you’ll see that the CHAdeMO adapter is listed under Model S.

Here’s the description that goes with the adapter:

Take advantage of CHAdeMO’s network of 50 kW charging stations by enabling onboard hardware and purchasing an external adapter. CHAdeMO stations charge at the rate of approximately 150 miles (UPDATE: previously the website states 70 miles) of range per hour of charge with locations primarily in the Pacific Northwest.

This adapter is specifically for North American Model S. A separate adapter is required for European and Asian Model S. For Model S without Supercharging enabled, onboard hardware must be activated to use the CHAdeMO adapter. Every 85 kWh Model S is already Supercharging enabled.

CHAdeMO Charger Me

CHAdeMO Charger Me

For Model S with Supercharging enabled
Available online this winter

Adapter + Onboard Hardware Activation
For Model S without Supercharging enabled

To order before your Model S delivery, email buildmymodels@teslamotors.com.
After Model S delivery
Available online this winter

Source: Tesla Motors Club

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70 responses to "Tesla Confirms Model S CHAdeMO Adapter For US Coming This Winter; Pricing Starts at $1,000"

  1. David Murray says:

    Cool.. This will help establish Chademo as a standard outside of just the Leaf. Now we can say it works with Nissan, Mitsubishi, and Tesla.

    1. GeorgeS says:

      Yes David. Especially since those new SAE chargers are so rare.

      It is especially good for me here in AZ. The supercharger network is non existent for me on the east side of Phx and the little town I live in 150 miles to the NE of Phx. This adapter would allow me to get to Phx and back. Good work Tesla.

      What do you suppose a Nissan dealer would do if a Tesla S showed up to use their charger??

      1. Eric Loveday says:

        Rare is an understatement. Only 1 SAE CCS exists in the US

        1. George B says:

          Eric, there is definitely more than just one, although that’s often the number which is named in this context. That said, the number is still negligibly small, which is true.

        2. George B says:

          Here is the one at VW ERL in Belmont. Let’s see if this works:

          1. George B says:

            Can’t use the tag, apparently, here is the link:

            1. Jay Cole says:

              Without login the site is a little slow to show pics, if you just drop the link in there and give it a few minutes, it will show up, (=

              1. George B says:

                Will do, thanks again, Jay!

                1. io says:

                  “Reserved parking – Charging for GM vehicles only”
                  (also, it doesn’t look powered up, but maybe it’s just the picture…)

                2. George B says:

                  Way to beat a dead horse. The original claim was that there was only one CCS installation in the US. That is evidently not true.

                  While you continue to thumb your nose, let me remind you again that the first CHAdeMO installation in California was at Mitsubishi HQ in Cypress. It was a very similar arrangement to the sites in Long Beach and in Belmont.

                  Many early LEAF drivers got their first quick charge at Mitsubishi. And the VWERL site was the first CHAdeMO site in Northern California. It was for research purposes only, obviously, since VW does not intend to sell CHAdeMO cars.

                  Apparently, the hundreds of quick charges administered for free to LEAF owners do not count, because it’s a test facility, which apparently does not fit into your belief system.

                  I would advise to make an effort to see the forest despite the trees, if possible. This is my last post on this article.

          2. io says:

            Well, it’s not open to the public (not that it matters, no compatible car is available to the public yet either).
            On the other hand, the CHAdeMO QC just next to it is…

            1. Josh says:

              It is a fitting picture considering there are no cars that could plug into it.

              1. George B says:

                Interesting you should say that. I’m under the impression that none of the commenters lived in the area and knew anything about this installation beyond what could be gleaned from the web. I would therefore urge you not to jump to conclusions too soon.

                Same goes for CCS and its future. I’m under the impression that nothing is set in stone yet. I omitted the CHAdeMO port when I ordered my LEAF based on an “insightful” news story. This was a mistake, as I later learned. Although I did not have any chance to use the network, I did my part to help with CHAdeMO infrastructure in California. I feel the same way about CCS.

                I’m not a fanboy of either camp; it all serves the same purpose. In fact, I would prefer if the automakers, and this includes Tesla, could agree at least on a common communications protocol, even if everyone has the urge to reinvent the plug. That way, simple “dump” adapters could be used.

            2. George B says:

              I continue to be amazed the amount of negativity and downright bias when it comes to certain topics. CCS is one of them. There are multiple claims that there is only one installation in the US. This is not true. I would have no argument if someone said “few installations” or a “negligible number”, but to use incorrect or misleading facts to portray topics in a certain light does not help. Same goes for the accessibility or the purpose of an installation.

              1. David says:

                Doesn’t seem like bias, seems like reality.

                CHAdeMO and Tesla’s supercharger are already on the scene. SAE/GM comes out with yet another incompatible quick charge port for use only in the US (Europe uses a different connector even for CCS). They want everyone to deploy this new “standard” even though they haven’t sold a single car with it yet.

                Most importantly, they lobby to STOP deployment of CHAdeMO. Does this help anyone? Or is it a stall tactic to stop quick chargers in general?

                GM doesn’t seem genuine. Spark doesn’t have CCS yet and will be sold only in California, yet stop CHAdeMO nationwide roll out?

                GM doesn’t bother to offer any public charging at their dealerships, unlike Nissan.

                Regarding the number of CCS installations, when the number is ONE public station and there is big press around it, that is hardly incorrect or misleading. Its not a rounding error. When your talking 1, another public one would double the number of installations. It would be big news. If there was another public one available, it would be well publicized.

                1. George B says:

                  David, I have no problem with reality. Whatsoever. What I do have a problem with are emotionally and otherwise loaded statements, which do not appear to be very constructive or help anything.

                  There are at least two public stations in the US: one in San Diego, CA, and another one in New Berlin, WI. That is a fact. While I appreciate your sentiment and POV, I really don’t need to read another comment claiming a different number in all-caps. Thank you.


                  There are several other sites in the US, which were set up primarily for test purposes. That said; let’s recall that the first and only CHAdeMO station in California, the largest market for the LEAF, was an Eaton QC at Mitsubishi HQ in Cypress. And it took quite some time, almost a year, before other alternative stations were opened.

                  Despite the fact that the Cypress QC was primarily an R&D facility, many LEAF owners got their first quick charge there. Including some more prominent ones like Gary “GID” Giddings, who is now helping build an open-source CHAdeMO.

                  I think the lessons of the past are easily forgotten. I think those wishing a quick death of the SAE standard are not helping things. As a former LEAF driver, I can certainly relate, but how will it look like to Spark and future i3 drivers when they read these comments? We are one big EV community, or are we?

                2. George B says:

                  One more thing, the first CCS installation I mentioned above was publicized by InsideEVs a month ago. I remember it well:


  2. pjwood says:

    I bet even Monster Cable is jealous of Tesla’s adaptor margins.

    1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:


      People should note that the adapter is limited to 70mph. Don’t know whether that’s a physical adapter limitation or Tesla’s evil plan to have Model S drivers hog all of the CHAdeMO chargers.

      1. Eric Loveday says:

        At 50Kw, that’s all the Model S will get…70 miles per hour of charge. CHAdeMO standard is capable of well over 50 kW, but most of the installed units in the US only put out that amount.

        1. Mint says:

          50kW is more than half as much as current superchargers, so 70 miles charge per hour is a bit low.

          Even at a low 80% efficiency, it should get 125 miles of range per hour. Think about it: in 2 hours, chademo can output 100kWh of electrical energy.

          1. vdiv says:

            Not to be a stickler, but the Nissan CHAdeMO stations installed by eVgo are rated to 44 kW max:

            Compared that to an upgraded Tesla Supercharger capable of delivering 120 kW that is almost a third, not more than a half.

            1. Jay Cole says:

              Just as a note vdiv, we can make regular link pics actually show in threads as pictures, but dropbox is evil and won’t let you access the images directly.

              Not that you have to adjust…just saying, (=

            2. io says:

              Nope. The chargers max output power is only very indirectly related to charging speed: the current the battery can accept tapers off as it fills up, and its voltage is typically significantly below the max supported by the charger.

              Example: Blink CHAdeMO units put out 60kW (125A at 480V max). You’d think a Nissan’s 44kW would be 1/3 slower, but nope, it can pump almost the same current into a Leaf battery: 120A.

              Fuji measured that its 25kW CHAdeMO QC was obviously slower than its 50kW offering, but nowhere near 2x.

              All in all, today’s typical 44 to 60 kW CHAdeMO units will of course be slower than a supercharger, but as they will remain at max power for much longer, the difference won’t be that great.
              Tesla apparently reckons 1.6 (60kW*h pack) to 1.7x (85kW*h pack), indeed far less than 2x.

              1. George B says:

                The tapering observed in this context is a function of the charging protocol, and not necessarily of the battery or its state of charge, even though that’s how it has been implemented.

                1. io says:

                  “Charging protocol” as in “this is how to charge this battery without making it blow up”, yes.
                  Nothing to do with the BMS, CHAdeMO or whatever else.

                  The charging algorithm for Li-ion is dead simple: constant voltage, with obviously a limit on current. Once this target charging voltage is reached (e.g. 4.1V per cell on the Leaf), current naturally starts to decline. This tapering off is directly dictated by the battery, which simply accept charge slower and slower.

                2. George B says:

                  Yes, agreed. However using terms such as “this is how to charge this battery without making it blow up” is bit simplistic.

                  Like with anything in the engineering world, there are different ways of accomplishing the same thing, and the generally accepted practice or rule is typically a tradeoff and a compromise in more ways than one.

                  I would not go as far as to say that how a typical CHAdeMO station is set up is the only way to charge a lithium-ion battery or that it would “blow up”.

        2. io says:

          Indeed 70mph didn’t seem right, and fact is Tesla updated that and now states 150.

          @Eric, you might want to update your article to reflect this.

          @Mint, spot on. Efficiency should be 97%+ as neither the adapter nor the car does any power conversion (the charger connects directly to the battery), and Li-ion exhibits very good coulombic efficiency (typically around 98%).

          1. Jay Cole says:

            Yupe, thanks io, got it fixed up now to reflect Tesla’s changes on the fly

      2. scottf200 says:

        I wonder if the infrastructure/installation of the chademo chargers are *mainly* setup for ~25kW max charging which seems to be what the LEAF (and i-MEV) does? See this chart:
        Charging Power as a Function of Time – EPRI LEAF
        EPRI – Elect Power Research Institute – http://www.epri.com

        1. Dave R says:

          By far most installed CHAdeMO stations are of the 50kW variety than 25 kW. Only a few 25 kW stations exist in the USA that I am aware of…

        2. io says:

          Blink’s are 60kW.
          AV, Eaton… the majority indeed, are 50kW.
          The only 25kW station I know of is the EvOasis/Chargepoint Fuji unit in San Juan Capistrano. One unit.

          Note that those numbers don’t directly translate into charging speed anyway; see http://insideevs.com/tesla-confirms-chademo-adapter-for-us-coming-this-winter-pricing-starts-at-1000/#comment-175080

    2. David says:

      You realize of course that this isn’t a simple cable adapter, moving this wire to that wire. Its more complex than the EVSE you pay $1000 for. It has to understand each protocol and convert between them, likely with a microprocessor and good bit of circuitry. It then needs to manage the flow of 40kw of power which requires massive and expensive components. Its a expensive adapter to design and make. Margins might not be that great especially considering limited quantities that may be sold.

      1. Dave Williams says:

        It doesn’t have to regulate anything. The CHAdeMO charger would still do all the regulating. It just has to do the protocol conversion.

  3. Brian says:

    Did Tesla just cement CHAdeMO’s standing as the public QC of choice? This allows CHAdeMO to fill in the gaps between Superchargers (which make a great looking map, but leave many routes out of the question). The trouble is, there are practicallly no CHAdeMOs in the northeast. I say bring on the chargers already.

    1. Eric Loveday says:

      I believe Tesla did. Let CCS now die off.

      1. Taser54 says:

        Not going to happen.

        1. George B says:

          Exactly, while I don’t appreciate the diverging standards, and the apparent competition among automakers to come up with new proprietary tweaks on such fundamental things as the DC plug, I also don’t really understand the animosity. If I counted right, so far are three AC plug types, and three DC plug design worldwide, which could see significant support and deployment in the field.

    2. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

      I’m not sure.

      CHAdeMO chargers are only 50kW, and still expensive enough that they’re really only a nice emergency charger, not a long-distance charger.

      For the Model S, the 70mph limit means the Supercharger will still be the go to charger, but it might help bridge some gaps and allow people to push the range a bit while the network is built out.

      1. Eric Loveday says:

        What’s to say that Tesla won’t pay for some CHAdeMO installs here and there now?

        1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

          I don’t see why they’d do that, unless they’re thinking about selling small CHAdeMO-enabled drivetrains to other manufacturers.

          Their model’s long-range BEVs at 60kWh+ with Supercharging at 120kW*(60/85) or more.

        2. Suprise Cat says:

          Well, when Model S drivers use the chademo chargers regularly, they will finance the installation of more.

        3. JakeY says:

          Why would they do that when they can spend the money on the far superior supercharger stations and also build their brand (having exclusive chargers for their cars).

      2. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

        Although, I guess that if cheaper CHAdeMO units are $10k and continue to fall in price it could become an “event” (2-4 hours of charging) standard.

    3. Aatheus says:

      Once more than one public CCS station exists in California, I am sure that Tesla will offer a CCS->Model S adapter. But there are currently a lot more CHAdeMO stations in CA. It will be interesting to see where we are in a year or two.

    4. JakeY says:

      Not really, all Tesla has to do is to release CCS adapter (which they are almost guaranteed to do once enough chargers are installed) they are back to being a “neutral” party.

      And I do note they waited until a couple days after the first publicly operational CCS station was turned on before announcing this adapter. Could be a coincidence, but could also be Tesla trying to be neutral in the “connector wars”.

  4. kdawg says:

    Wow, that looks huge. Maybe it’s just the scale. Is there an SAE adapter yet?
    How much does this thing weigh? Is that cord flexible? How much stress are you putting on the little Tesla port?

    1. Eric Loveday says:

      SAE is not possible, according to Tesla…Communication issues can’t be overcome…at least not with the Model S

      1. Dave R says:

        Just the opposite. Tesla has said that SAE combo is simple to adapt to compared to CHAdeMO for them. But the adapter will probably be similar in size and cost.

        1. Eric Loveday says:

          Yes…my bad Dave…You are correct…Though the main push for CHAdeMO capability comes from the thousands of quick chargers in Japan. The Model S is headed there soon.

        2. JakeY says:

          “But the adapter will probably be similar in size and cost.”
          Actually I think it would be much smaller and less expensive, similar to the existing J1772 adapter (which is soda can sized and $95). Tesla’s connector is 5 pin and SAE Combo also only needs 5 pins to do DC charging, plus Tesla’s CTO already recently mentioned they are 100% compatible with all the latest SAE standards, so a simple pin-to-pin adapter is all that’s needed to make it work (no translating/emulation necessary).

  5. Taser54 says:

    Meet the Godzilla plug adapter. Good move by Tesla given that they already built it for the Japanese market Teslas.

    1. George B says:

      Yes, I believe it’s the Japanese market, which prompted them to complete work on this adapter and start marketing it.

  6. Bloggin says:

    So Tesla’s away from home and with no Supercharger available, can use a Japanese standard as a backup to charge if necessary. And help sell cars to consumers who don’t live near a Supercharger station.

    As the roll out of SAE Combo chargers kick in for 2014, SAE Combo adapter will be next. Clearly it would not make sense for Tesla to offer an adapter today, with only 1 SAE Combo charging station available.

  7. Ocean Railroader says:

    This sort of changes the game rules in that I had always thought that Tesla would come along with their superchargers and make this type of plug obsolete do to it being faster. But now it starting to look like you would see tons of these types of plugs locally and see the Tesla supercharger which might make these local chargers used far more then the superchargers do to them being very common. Now the question is could the existence of this charger raise the number of users a great deal in that there are now over 14,000 Teslas out there that can now use these networks.

    1. Taser54 says:

      IMHO, Only a small portion of existing Model S owners will purchase this adapter. It is far more likely to be sold to new Model S owners at the point of initial sale (where accessories are normally purchased).

      1. Josh says:

        There are actually a lot of people on the TMC forum that have been dying for this. There will at least be a large number of purchases after it goes on sale.

        1. Ocean Railroader says:

          What is nice now is that if I have a reason to say that adding one of these things to say a local parking lot can now allow it to charge a Tesla.

          There are many places in the county where there are many of these types of chargers and Nissan wants to build hundreds of them along with several public charging companies. This is very ground breaking news in away.

          1. KenZ says:

            Well that’s an interesting thought to be sure. Say you’re the owner of a network of CHAdeMO chargers. You buy a bunch of Tesla adapters, in bulk, from Tesla, possibly even just about cost (since you’re effectively helping Tesla here). Now you tether it to your chargers (with an overmold or something to make it relatively unstealable), and… bingo… now you have more customers. Get Tesla to list those in the car’s nav system as secondary “medium rate” pay chargers. Customers with the disposable income to pay your rates, too, regardless of the relative slow charge rate compared to a supercharger. Interesting. Good idea O.R.

  8. Tom says:

    It’s a little odd since, when I use QC on my Leaf, it charges at a nearly 50Kw rate… I wonder why Tesla is limiting it to 25Kw… There are some QCs that are limited to less than 50Kw due to power issues primarily, but they are the exception…

    1. io says:

      I was wondering about the same thing. I think they got their “70mph” number wrong.

      It would be embarrassing for Tesla to enter the Japanese market with a luxury car that cannot charge at least as fast as much cheaper EVs…

      1. io says:

        AHA! As a matter of fact, Tesla fixed its website, it now states “150 mph”.

        So yes, the adapter passes 50 kW. Good.

        Remaining question now, is it capped at that power (or more likely, some other limit, like the 125A commonly seen today for CHAdeMO connectors), or could it go higher too, like Blink’s 60kW, all the way to CHAdeMO’s 200A, 100kW max?..

  9. io says:

    Something interesting re pricing: after SC activation, the CHAdeMO adapter is only 400$.


    Tesla leverages one to push the other, nice!

    1. George B says:

      That is a GREAT price. Wow.

  10. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

    I still think they should have a barn door ‘grille’ behind which there’s space to put in one or more optional alternate charger ports, so you don’t have to worry about carrying adapters around, losing them, etc.

    1. JakeY says:

      The inverter/motor/charger and high voltage cabling is all in the rear (12V accessories are in the front), so it’s not really practical to add a barn door like the Leaf has in the front.

      1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

        Run some extra cable, much easier and lighter than an exhaust or fuel system..

        1. JakeY says:

          Then you have to run another high voltage cable through the middle of the car and that’s a pretty long wire run (~15 ft, effectively doubling the length of the cable that comes out of the DC charger). That’s in general not preferred (voltage drop considerations probably), which is why the front-motor/inverter Leaf has the charge ports in the front, and the rear-motor/inverter iMIEV/i3 has it in the rear. I take it there’s also emergency responder considerations (you can cut into an exhaust system with no harm, can’t do the same with a high voltage cable).

          An adapter with a short wire is much simpler.

  11. Dan Frederiksen says:

    That’s all kinds of ugly