General Motors and Tesla are partnering to provide Tesla Supercharger access to GM EVs and NACS Plugs on future models.
The change will happen over the next few model years. Starting in 2024, current GM EVs will begin to have access to the Tesla Supercharger network through the use of an adapter. in 2025 General Motors will begin producing vehicles with the NACS standard built into the vehicle. Tesla announced last fall that they would open up their network and plug standard to other automakers.
So what’s the big deal? What’s NACS? What makes it different from the plug/outlet you’d already find on a GM EV? Let’s go into the details.
NACS, or North American Charging Standard, is the type of plug and receptacle you’d find on a Tesla. CCS, or Combined Charging System, is the current standard that’s being used by everyone but Tesla. While both plugs look very different (The Tesla plug is smaller and more compact), they do precisely the same thing – Provide the interface between the electric vehicle and the charging unit. Sort of like Blueray vs HD DVD or Betamax vs VHS. Two competing standards that provide the same service to consumers.
It’s a big deal that GM has chosen to move to the NACS plug and abandon the CCS plug. The announcement from GM is right on the heels of Ford Motor Company announcing the same switch to NACS. This means that an eventual move to NACS for every new EV is pretty much guaranteed now that the three biggest automakers in the US are adopting the standard. Expect other brands to follow suit. Tesla has far more Supercharger stations and units than any other independent competition, such as EVGo or Electrify America. There are currently over 12,000 Superchargers in the US. Many can charge at a rate up to 250kW, which is enough for GM’s largest Ultium battery packs found in the HUMMER EV and future Silverado EV and Sierra EV.
For consumers in the long run, this is a great move. It means that eventually every charger in the USA will use the same plug. In the short term, the benefits are not as apparent because questions remain. What happens to CCS plugs? Will GM EV’s already produced with a CCS plug get an adapter? What happens to everyone who has already installed a CCS charger into their home? GM-Trucks.com has reached out to GM to ask these questions and will update this article with any reply.
Questions like these will take time to figure out and no doubt frustrate EV buyers in the short term but provide a better EV experience for everyone in the long term.