BP places an order for $100 million worth of official Tesla Superchargers, to be integrated into a range of stations allied with BP including Amoco, ampm, BP, Hertz, and others.
The energy giant intends to install the first Tesla Superchargers at its locations starting in 2024, just when the first non-Tesla EVs will gain the ability to recharge at Tesla Superchargers and NACS compatible stations.
Several major automakers have made plans to adopt Tesla's NACS connectors starting in 2024, ahead of integrating them into their new vehicles in 2025.
Tesla's Supercharger network has been the envy of many automakers that have since joined the EV sphere, but so far only a couple of them have invested any money in building charging networks of their own.
The one major exception is the VW Group, which had begun building a brand-neutral network, Electrify America, in the wake of the diesel crisis. The other exception is Rivian, which is working on a much smaller-scale effort divided into Rivian-exclusive and brand-neutral stations.
Now, energy giant BP is entering a far less explored category: A massive third-party charging network that actually uses official Tesla Supercharger hardware. BP has just revealed plans to buy $100 million worth of Supercharger stalls, which it will install at bp pulse stations, as well as Amoco, ampm, BP, Thorntons, Hertz, and TravelCenters of America locations.
The energy giant plans to install Tesla Superchargers starting in 2024, first targeting large metro areas and major airports. And the first metro areas that will see these Tesla Superchargers won't be EV early adopter regions in northern California, but rather Houston, Phoenix, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Washington DC.
The chargers themselves will wear bp pulse branding, and will feature both NACS and CCS connectors, thereby making them available to non-Tesla EVs. Another welcome piece of news is that these chargers will still offer Tesla's Plug and Charge protocol for ease of use.
"Strengthening the bp pulse network with Tesla's industry-leading hardware is a major step forward in our ambitions for high speed, open-access charging infrastructure in the US and advances our ambition to delivering an exceptional customer experience," said Richard Bartlett, global CEO of bp pulse.
However, BP did not yet indicate just how many stalls this $100 million will buy, but the number is certainly in the four-figure range. Each station should feature six stalls or more, per Tesla custom, but some busy airport-based stations could likely feature more stalls.
BP's deal with Tesla should represent the single largest third-party purchase of official Tesla Superchargers, while also accounting for a significant chunk of BP's own commitment to invest $1 billion in EV charging infrastructure by 2030.
This deal should also help allay fears by some Tesla owners that starting in 2024 the Supercharger stations will be overrun with EVs from other brands.
Will the availability of Tesla Superchargers to non-Tesla EVs motivate more people to choose electric cars, or are other factors such as range and price more important to consumers at the moment? Let us know what you think.