Tesla Model S Buyers Get Free Universal Mobile Connector In China


Tesla UMC - Model S (US)

Tesla UMC – Model S (US)

In an effort to boost struggling sales in China, Tesla Motors will toss in a free Universal Mobile Connector with all Model S purchases.

The UMC, along with a long list of available adapters, allows the Model S to charge from virtually any outlet.  This is especially important in China were finding a proper place to plug in can be challenging.

As Car News China reports:

Tesla China has issued a press release, announcing every Tesla Model S in China will be equipped with a new ‘Universal Mobile Charger’ for free. Tesla says the charger is developed especially for China, and that it is part of a new effort to adjust Tesla products to the local Chinese market.

The set is meant to enable Tesla drivers to charge their Model S everywhere in country in case of emergencies, including in shopping malls and hotels. Tesla says it wants to alleviate the “charging worry” (充电无忧) among current and potential-future Tesla owners. The set will become available this summer, it will be standard on new cars and free for current owners.

Obviously, the UMC available in China differs from the U.S. version show above.

Source: Car News China

Categories: Charging, Tesla


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23 Comments on "Tesla Model S Buyers Get Free Universal Mobile Connector In China"

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Of course, it would help if there actually were places in China where you can plug in an EV. The lack of reserved parking spots for potential EV owners to install their own private EV charger is actually a bigger problem for Tesla than the lack of public chargers. Most people in China live in large apartment buildings. Some apartment complexes have underground parking lots, but many don’t. And very few if any have reserved parking. The initial spate of Tesla orders from China apparently came from the rich, who own their own detached houses, so had no problem installing an EV charge point on their own property, and no problem with reserving that for their own use. Expanding beyond that tiny market segment is going to be very difficult for Tesla. Of course, the initial hope was that even a relatively tiny market segment in a country with as huge a population as China would still result in very significant sales. But clearly it hasn’t worked as well as Tesla planned. Altho I hope that Tesla does figure out a way to expand its sales in China, I very much fear that won’t happen for some years; won’t happen… Read more »

Well, if the Chinese want to support EVs, it is time for them to address this. Time to pass a law requiring assigned parking and the ability to install chargers. And mandate pre-wiring for new apartment buildings.

Well, it would be great if the Chinese central government does decide to do this. But China has a unique political structure. It’s an oversimplification to say it’s a centrally controlled, totalitarian government. The regional Provinces retain some political control and local influence… along with influence-peddling and other entrenched corruption. (Well, “corruption” from our Western viewpoint. For the Chinese, it’s more just a normal part of how things get done.) That’s been a part of Chinese culture for thousands of years, and no mandate by the central government will erase that overnight.

If the central Chinese government mandated that all EV owners be assigned a reserve spot in the nearest parking lot to their home, and that they be allowed free access to install an EV charge point there, would the Provincial and local officials actually go along with it? Or would most of them take the attitude of “Okay, it’s the law and we’ll get around to that someday, but it’s not real high on my priority list at the moment (but if you bribe me, that ‘someday’ might get a lot closer)”?

I have a suspicion the latter might be a lot more common. It is, after all, China.

They need more articles like this:

“Tesla gives free Model S UMC’s in Ny, Cal, Oregon, Wash, Fla, ALA, NJ,VA, Ont, BC, Que,NFL,Sas,Alb

They won’t deduct the price of the thing if you don’t want it either.

Unless you mean ROADSTER UMC’s. Those things Burnt out so fast I’m surprised they don’t give those things away. But their cost is still $1500 a pop.

I mean really, what is a Model S owner going to do with a TSL-01 connector used on the Roadster?

THe next upgrade to this kind of thing will be an “S” connector on the Roadster, not a TSL-01 on the S.

Eric, hehe do you sometimes feel people are playing jokes on you?

“..Obviously, the UMC available in China differs from the U.S. version show above…”

The US version differs from that shown as well.

Whoops Bill, there was supposed to be the Roadster graphic and the current UMC as well…kinda doesn’t make sense without it. Thanks for the heads-up

Seriously? You guys can’t get a picture of a UMC that is remotely similar to the one actually delivered with the Model S in China? At least the EU one would be similar, but the adapters would be all different.


Glad you provided that Link Mike I.

I learned something today, but then it makes sense.

Norway, France, Spain, and, presumably Britain and Australia also get AMERICAN single phase ‘connectors’ as standard equipment.

Now the question is, does the CAR connector look like the American or is it a Mennekes compatible in those countries?

Some countries such as in Germany, Tesla would have to provide 3-phase ‘connectors’ standard since 32 amps single phase wouldn’t be allowed. And then of course the 11kw ‘single’ charger model would be the 16 amp model and the ‘dual charger model’ would be the 32 amp 22kw (somewhat larger than stateside offerings).

Bill – US, Canada & Japan are the only countries that use the Tesla proprietary Model S inlet with single phase on board chargers. Everywhere else has the Tesla customized Mennekes Type-2 compatible inlet and three phase on-board chargers. The mobile connector I linked supports single phase and three phase power up to 7.4kW single phase (230VAC 32A) and 11kW three phase (400VAC 16A). The included equipment varies by market. The other interesting thing is that there is no three phase HPWC (High Power Wall Connector) available for the overseas cars. It is supposedly going to be available sometime this year. In the UK, Tesla does not include the UMC at all. A 22kW capable Type-2 to Type-2 cable is included with the car there and a Mennekes branded 3-pin (BS1363) EVSE is available at extra cost. There is no UMC adapter made for UK household outlets. However, the UK government has a “home charging point subsidy scheme” where you can get a single phase EVSE installed at your home for little or no cost. That is what Tesla suggests for home charging. The rest of the EU has the UMC included, with Norway getting a special version that is… Read more »
Tesla also does not deliver the UMC with the car in Hong Kong or Australia. Those markets only receive a Wall Connector and a Type-2 to Type-2 cable. The single phase Wall Connector is delivered in advance of the car so the owner has the opportunity to install it before the car arrives. Hong Kong uses the same outlets as the UK, so the same Mennekes EVSE is available there for extra cost too. Australia is also a unique situation because they have some public J1772 stations. There is no commercially sanctioned adapter for this situation with a Type-2 car and a J1772 station, but there is a Chinese vendor that makes such a cable. It works, but it does not have all the safety mechanisms in place. The problem is that anybody can walk up and yank the J1772 station handle out of the adapter and the charging won’t stop when the button is pressed, instead it stops when the pilot and presence pins disengage just before the AC power pins. The Australian situation does not happen in Europe because most of the public charging stations do not have captive cables – the station has a socket for the… Read more »

Mike I it would be constructive if you learned to read your own link.

It is decidedly difficult to run 3 phase power on 2 wires.

“…Socket: Blue 3-Pin IEC 60309, 2P+E, 6h
• Voltage: 1 phase, 230 VAC supply, 50 Hz
• Current: 32 A
• Power provided: 7.4 kW
• Potential L – N: > 200 V….”

There is plainly no 380-416 volts associated with this connector.

Bill, you should realize from all the detail in the above posts that I might know what I’m talking about. This is the same UMC with the RED socket adapter fitted.


Strong volume does not make up for a weak argument. Your link clearly says the unit is a single phase unit.

Many people here I thought knew what they were talking about, but then they get a bit too detailed, showing ultimately they are clueless as to what is going on.

“…The mobile connector I linked supports single phase and three phase power up to 7.4kW single phase (230VAC 32A) and 11kW three phase (400VAC 16A)….”

The above paragraph is clearly nonesense disproved by your own link I quoted Verbatem.

Here you go again. I’m just going by the LINKS YOU PROVIDED. That link talked about the red connector, and I quote: “…The red adapter is included as standard equipment in The Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Italy and Eastern Europe…” . Your initial link talked about a blue connector, “….Summary sheet Model S includes a 6 metre Mobile Connector cable for home charging. A blue adapter is included as standard equipment in Norway, France and Spain. To take full advantage of your Mobile Connector, work with an electrician to install a blue utility socket where you plan to park your Tesla. This summary sheet will provide all the necessary information for an electrician to install the blue socket….” Not to belabor the point, but tesla says in certain countries the single phase blue connector is standard, and other countries the 3-phase RED connector is standard. I’m not going to bore everyone with the fact that Teslas are only arranged for WYE (STAR) connections commonplace these days and are only minimally compatible with DELTA (MESH) connections that used to be popular in the US and Canada, although the portable (travelling) superchargers can run just fine on… Read more »

I understand clearly how the Tesla Mobile Connector works overseas. You seem to be confused. It is a single unit that can accept multiple different adapters, much like the one in the States that allows several different kinds of NEMA outlets and adjusts the pilot so that you can’t overload the circuit. For the European Mobile Connector there is a “Schuko” adapter that allows 13A on a 16A circuit, a Blue “Commando” adapter that allows 32A single phase, and a Red “Commando” adapter that allows 16A three phase.

The Model S in the rest of the world (except USA, Canada, Japan) has a customized “Mennekes Compatible” inlet. The customization allows higher current for the Superchargers.


Well you claim you do, but the question of the UMC “EVSE replacement” could realistically have been done either way, and the Blue Plug only countries, which tesla says for the electrician to hook up a 32 amp single phase circuit to get “FULL USE” of the adapter, would imply that ‘UMC’ is a single phase unit, since if it could also take a ‘red plug’ (not likely since the blue extends beyond the plug), it would be contradicting what Tesla just said.

But without being there, and not having the serial #’s of the ‘umc’ I can’t say for sure one way or another. But if I’m mistaken its only because I’m taking Tesla at their word.

Bill, you don’t have to believe me. Maybe you should watch this video.


Also, look at the English EU page here. Pay particular attention to the “Adapter Guide”. The first three lines are the adapters for the UMC.


Anyway, no one ever did answer my question. It appears all European “S” ‘s are equiped with Mennekes compatible jacks on the taillight. But apparently those with Blue Jacks standard in a few countries could run an American style Tesla with an adapter. Similiar to Roadster operation since all Roadsters were always single-phase, to the consternation of Germans, Swiss, and other countries who had to suffer along with slow charging speeds even though the car could go much faster. Of course, an enterprising European could come up with a semi-ballanced three-phase to single phase transformer connection (rarely used in the States any longer, and only where a huge singlephase load (such as an induction heater) had to be kinda ballanced across a 3 phase supply. Perfect balance is impossible with a static connection, of course a Single phase roadster could be run at the full 70 amps 240 volts thru use of an ac drive, since the 3 phase ac input is converted to DC prior to the inverter, and of course the input loading could be perfectly ballanced. But I would suspect few Europeans actually did this and most just suffered along with the single phase Roadster, 32 amps… Read more »

The Model S in the rest of the world (except USA, Canada, Japan) has a customized “Mennekes Compatible” inlet. The customization allows higher current for the Superchargers.


Finally, China catches up to the U.S.

UMC should be standard equipment for all BEVs. I wish ClipperCreek made a UL version of the Jesla.