Published on November 5, 2019 |
by Dr. Maximilian Holland
5. November 2019 by Dr. Maximilian Holland
The latest Tesla software update (2019.36.1) has unlocked the full DC charging potential of the Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus (SR +). With this update, Model 3 SR + has a charging peak of 170 kW, up from the previous peak of 100-105 kW. This means that the SR + battery charge rate (C rate) is now roughly in line with that of the Model 3 Long Range variants, albeit scaled for the different battery size.
Confirmed! 2019.36.1 increases peak supercharging power for Model 3 SR + to 170kW. Source https://t.co/MTX9QHYj6P pic.twitter.com/fadz41eBlE
– Tesletter (@tesletter) November 3, 2019
We recently covered several of the new features enabled within the 2019.36.1 software update. A completely new feature for Model 3 Standard Range Plus owners is the significantly increased direct current charging power. We do not yet know the exact shape of the new SR + charging curve, but it is very likely to be a scaled down version of the charging range for its Long Range (LR) siblings.
For background, current TMC forum estimates put SR + battery pack of 54.5 kWh usable, and LR of 74.5 kWh usable. The respective top supercharging of 170 kW and 250 kW suggests that the LR battery can still be allowed to operate at a slightly higher peak C speed (3.36 vs 3.12 C) compared to SR +, about 8% higher. Outside of this short peak, however, the SR + battery is likely to be subject to similar overall C rates as the LR battery over a full charge cycle, which represents only a minor difference between the two pack sizes in terms of% charge state added during a typical mid-term charge session. .
My previous data estimated that an optimal 20 minute Supercharger V3 session (assuming starting from 10%) adds 63.1% charge to the Model 3 LR battery. I guess SR + should add a little lower 60.7% to the battery over those 20 minutes. If these are fair guesses, let's look at what the new 170 kW Supercharging price can mean for emergency preparedness on the road. We scale the EPA highway range of SR + in line with the last 250 mile EPA combined range upgrade (I include Kona EV and Niro EV in the graph for more context):
Being able to cover 3 hours of highway driving from complete, and then adding an additional ~ 2 hours on just 20 minutes of DC charging is a very decent result for SR +. It is also a good boost compared to what was typical with the previous 100 to 105 kW top supercharge speed. Obviously, the models 3 long range variants are the ultimate vehicle-ready EVs, capable of driving for almost 4 hours from full, and then add over 2½ hours more freeway reach in just 20 minutes of charging. In the real world, all Model 3 variants are very capable of making comfortable car trips.
We do not yet know exactly how the new higher power charging power will translate to the base Tesla Model 3 Standard Range, but it will scale in a similar way as we see for the SR + and LR variants.
Note that for occasional road stops living in areas well served with 100+ kW CCS infrastructure, Kona EV and Niro EV are also capable of traveling longer trips – especially for young families who takes 30 or 40 minute breaks at regular intervals anyway – and is around much better cars than gasoline-powered "alternatives."
Remember, all EVs are capable of starting a long journey directly from home with a "full tank" (full charge) – which no petrol vehicle can do unless you have a fuel pump installed at home ( not advisable ).
Are you a Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus owner? What do you think of the new maximum charging speed of 170 kW? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.
Article images courtesy of Tesla and the author's own work.
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