Tesla Trying To Entice People Away From Free Unlimited Charging

Joseph Iyanu
Tesla offers 6 years of free Supercharging to owners trading in older Model S/X, adapting to shifting EV market dynamics.
Tesla model S at a charge station. Photo: Kindel Media | Pexels

Tesla has come up with a new strategy to convince early Model S and Model X owners to let go of their unlimited free Supercharging privileges. The company now offers six years of unlimited Supercharging to customers who trade in their old models for a new Model S or Model X.

Tackling Unsustainability

Tesla’s early promise of unlimited free Supercharging was an enticing offer that helped the automaker gain a foothold in the market. However, after realizing the unsustainability of the program, Tesla ended the perk in 2018.

Tesla Charging Station. Photo: Jeff Cooper | Flickr

They have since actively tried to steer customers toward more profitable solutions, including offering a $5,000 discount for trade-ins.

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The Ownership Loyalty Benefit

The new program dubbed the “Ownership Loyalty Benefit,” requires owners to either trade in their older Model S or Model X or agree to remove unlimited Supercharging from their existing vehicle. 

In return, they will receive six years of unlimited Supercharging on their new Model S or Model X. The offer is valid for vehicles delivered by June 30, 2023.

Tesla Model S. Photo: Mario Duran-Ortiz | Flickr

Tesla’s FAQ states that the program is subject to change or ends at any time without notice. It is unclear whether this applies to the purchasing deadline or the possibility of losing access to unlimited Supercharging within the six-year window.

To determine if this offer is worth considering, owners should compare their home electric bills to their Supercharging invoice history. By assessing the impact of Tesla charging on their monthly bills and factoring in other potential Tesla offers for 2023, owners can make a more informed decision.

Early adopters nearing the 10-year lifespan of their vehicles may find that the financial benefits of the trade-in, coupled with the peace of mind offered by a new vehicle, outweigh the loss of unlimited free Supercharging.

Shifting Supercharging Strategy

Tesla’s push to entice owners away from unlimited Supercharging coincides with the company’s efforts to open the Supercharger network to non-Tesla EVs. By expanding the network, Tesla is exploring the potential of turning the Supercharger infrastructure into a profitable business.

Tesla Model X. Photo: Mario Duran-Ortiz | Flickr

Owners considering the offer should weigh the short-term benefits of six years of free Supercharging against the long-term implications of Tesla’s shifting strategies in the EV market.

With the rapidly evolving electric vehicle (EV) landscape, it is essential for Tesla owners to consider not only the immediate benefits of trading in their older models but also the potential future developments in the industry.

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One such development is the potential for advancements in charging infrastructure that could make fast charging more accessible and affordable for all EV owners. Trading in for a new Model S or Model X may offer additional advantages, such as compatibility with improved charging technologies and better overall performance.

Maintenance And Warranty Benefits

Upgrading to a newer Model S or Model X also means gaining access to Tesla’s warranty coverage, which could prove invaluable for costly repairs or maintenance issues.

Tesla Charging Station. Photo: Phillip Pessar

The comprehensive warranty for new vehicles covers the car for up to 4 years or 50,000 miles, whichever comes first, while the battery and drive unit warranty can last for 8 years, depending on the model.

These warranty benefits, combined with the technological advancements in newer Tesla vehicles, could significantly outweigh the value of unlimited Supercharging for life in older models.


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