During the annual Tesla shareholders’ meeting, Elon Musk again made very interesting revelations. The CEO said that very soon, they will be able to manufacture an electric car with an autonomy of more than 640 kilometers in only one load. However, he did not give any kind of foresight as to when this might happen.
This is an ambitious promise, which seems to be well within reach of the most popular manufacturer of electric cars. Musk’s revelation was made while presenting the results of comparing the autonomy of the various Tesla models with their competition.
Surprisingly, the Tesla Model S, launched in 2012, continues to offer more autonomy than any current car from rival manufacturers. As revealed in its presentation, it had 7 years ago a range of more than 425 km with only one shipment.
In turn, newer cars like the Hyundai Kona, Nissan Leaf and Audi E-Tron, still can not match the 2012 model of Tesla.
Do we need an electric car with a range of 640 km?
It is true that even today, one of the main excuses for not investing in an electric car is its ‘weak autonomy’. It is not uncommon for people to claim that 300/400 km of autonomy is a deal breaker when it comes to buying an electric car.
According to a study published in January 2018 by the ACP (Automobile Club of Portugal), Portuguese drivers cover an average of 9 thousand kilometers per year. This average corresponds to approximately 190 km per week, a value inferior to the autonomy capacity of the vast majority of electric cars of the present time.
So in theory, if you invested in a Tesla Model 3 (354 km range), you would not need to worry about charging for a whole week.
Therefore, although it is certainly one of the points where the technological advances have been reflected, this is not a real need of the users.
Long distance travel continues to be a problem
On the other hand, there is still a very real problem that could cause a real impact on the experience of using an electric car, the availability of charging stations.
We have already realized that the autonomy of a Tesla is more than enough to last a whole week without having to worry about loading.
However, when you want to plan long-distance travel in Portugal, this can be a challenge that you still can not ignore. For example, you’ll be able to take a Lisbon-Porto trip (310 km) without worrying about loading, but a Porto-Faro trip (555 km) will be a bigger challenge. Still, even in a traditional diesel / gasoline car, it is customary to make supplies during this type of trip.
As Pedro Henriques pointed out in his experience with a Tesla Model X , travel planning / charging points in Portugal can be a real headache.
Therefore, it seems clear that the major investment should be made in the development of the technologies of the loading stations, as well as to increase their availability throughout the country.