From zero to 2,832 in less than 3 yearsIf Elon Musk has superpowers, they are Thinking Big and Actually Making Stuff Happen. Over the years, countless interesting concepts and computer-generated graphics and mockups of cool ideas have crossed the TreeHugger editorial desks, and we've written about a lot of them, but most never actually saw the light of day. Or if they did, they were only made in small numbers and never really had a big impact.
Musk had a big vision - change the whole transportation industry so that it runs on electricity rather than fossil fuels, and meanwhile, he wanted to also clean up the power grid with SolarCity - and for the past decade he's been executing it step-by-step, making things happen. At first many people were confused about the ultimate goal, thinking that he was just making toys for rich people, but the sports cars were just the best way to bootstrap the next phase of the plan, and the luxury sedan is just the way to bootstrap the next phase of the plan (Model 3) and finance battery Gigafactories and worldwide networks of clean-powered, free-to-use, super-fast-charging stations...
If you're a startup like Tesla was, it's impossible to start with a low-cost, mass-market EV. You don't have economies of scale, batteries were still too expensive 10 years ago, you don't have a charging infrastructure, people don't trust that you can do it... So they've been building up to the real goal over time. One big piece of the puzzle is the worldwide network of Supercharger stations, which has just passed a new milestone: 500 stations (and 2,832 actual superchargers, for an average of 5.6 per station).
Above is the map of the location of all the stations right now. As you can see, they are clustered in the markets where Teslas sell right now. If you are outside of those areas, you still have access to regular charging stations, but long-range travel might require a bit more planning and patience.
Here's a zoomed-in view of the US. At this scale we can see the various "corridors" where most long-range travel takes place.
Here's Europe, with a nice view of how far North into Scandinavia the stations go. Norway is the country with the most Teslas per capita, so it's not surprising.
Here's Asia, with China and Japan being the host of the current stations, unsurprisingly.
All that is missing from the maps above are the 2 Stations located in Australia (Sydney and Melbourne).
The graph above shows how the power output of the 120kW Supercharger compares to the other most common "fast" charging methods... The red bar speaks for itself.
The new Superchargers being installed are likely to be the new, liquid-cooled version that we wrote about here. Here's a video showing it: