Tesla Model 3 charging guide

tesla model 3 ev charging guide
 

Tesla’s Model 3 is the company’s highly-anticipated compact saloon, sitting below the Model S in the line-up, but still promising long driving ranges. With prices competing against the established executive saloon competition of Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Lexus, and Mercedes Benz, the Model 3 looks set to prove a huge seller in the UK.

Available with a choice of ranges, the Model 3 will cover between 250 and 350 miles on a single charge, depending on model. All are eligible for the UK Government’s £3,500 Plug-in Car Grant, and buyers are likely to be able to get £500 off a new home EV charge point as part of the EVHS.

Tesla Model 3 Range

Official WLTP Range

Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus
254 miles

Tesla Model 3 Long Range
348 miles

Tesla Model 3 Performance
329 miles

Real-world Range

Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus
241 miles

Tesla Model 3 Long Range
331 miles

Tesla Model 3 Performance
313 miles

 

How to charge a Tesla Model 3

tesla model 3 charging

The Tesla Model 3 range uses the CCS charging standard, which consists of a combined AC and DC inlet port. The top portion of the inlet is for the Type 2 connector, which is used when charging at home, or at public slow and fast AC points. Both the upper and lower sections on the inlet are used to carry high power during rapid DC charging.

In this case, the inlet is a Tesla-specific CCS, which means it can use the Supercharger and Destination charger networks. When using Superchargers, drivers will need to use tethered CCS adaptor, rather than the Type 2 connector from the unit. The Model 3 will be able to charge from Tesla Destination units in the same way as Model S and Model X drivers.

The Tesla Model 3’s CCS charging inlet is found on the rear near-side flank, built into the leading section of the rear light cluster. The Model 3 is able to be slow, fast and rapid charged from public points, depending on the network and type of charge unit. In most cases, slow charging requires a 3-pin-to-Type 2 cable, and fast charging a Type 2-to-Type 2 cable, one of which is usually supplied with the vehicle. For rapid charging, the vehicle uses a tethered CCS connector which is part of the charging unit.


Type 2 – Slow & FastCCS – Rapid
type2-connector
ccs

Charging on AC or DC requires the EV driver to plug the connectors into the correct inlet, after which the car then ‘talks’ to the charging unit to make sure there is a power supply, that there are no faults, and that it is safe to start charging. If charging at private home or workplace charge point, the vehicle then automatically starts charging.

On a public charger, an activation process is required to initiate charging. Depending on the network provider, this may require the use of an RFID card or smartphone app, often linked to an account which has been set up beforehand. Contactless pay-as-you-go units are also becoming more common on newer units. Once activated, the units will conduct further connection and account checks before starting to charge the vehicle.


How long does it take to charge a Tesla Model 3?

tesla model 3 charging

The following table shows approximate time to charge an Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus. Times are for a 100% charge for all but rapid charging, which is quoted for 0-80% as most rapid chargers reduce or cut power well before 100% charge to protect the battery and maximise efficiency.

Note that the times shown are only a guide, as very rarely will an EV need to be fully charged from 0%. Other factors that might vary the charging time include ambient temperature, in-vehicle energy loads, any upper and lower charge restrictions to extend battery life and protect against potential damage, and charging rates slowing down as the maximum charge is reached.


Rapid 120kW
Supercharger
Rapid
100kW
Rapid
50kW
Fast
22kW
Fast
7kW
Slow
3kW
20 mins
0-80%
30 mins
0-80%
1 hour
0-80%
5.5 hours
0-100%
8.5 hours
0-100%
20 hours
0-100%

 

The Tesla Model 3 is fitted with an 11 kW on-board charger for Type 2 AC charging as standard, in addition to rapid DC capability. This means that even when connected to a fast charger with a rated output above 11 kW, the Tesla Model 3 will only be able to charge at 11 kW.

Use Zap-Map’s Home Charging Calculator to estimate charging times for an Tesla Model 3. The level of battery charge, connector speed, and on-board charger options can be tailored to your requirements for more accurate results.


How much does it cost to charge a Tesla Model 3?

The table shown below shows estimates of the cost to charge the Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus’ 60 kWh battery at home (on a domestic tariff) or using a rapid charge point. Cost estimates are dependent on the charge remaining, usable battery capacity, and age of battery pack. Cost per mile is calculated using an estimate of real-world range.

TypeCost/kWhCost to chargeCost per mile
Home16 p/kWh£9.603.9 p/mile
Public Rapid30 p/kWh to 80% charge£14.405.8 p/mile
Tesla Supercharger24 p/kWh to 80% charge£11.524.7 p/mile

 

Based on these figures, the Tesla Model 3’s fuel costs are 4-6 p/mile based on real-world energy usage, the cost depending on the type of charging. In general, home charging provides the cheapest per mile cost and public rapid charging tends to be around double the cost (per charge and per mile). These fuel costs compare favourably with 12-15 p/mile for conventional petrol and diesel cars.

To find the cost and times to charge an EV on a public charge point, Zap-Map’s Public Charging Calculator calculates charging costs for any new or used plug-in vehicle. The results can be personalised for different electricity costs and the level of charge required.

Charging a Tesla Model 3 at home

tesla model 3 home charging

Buying a Tesla Model 3 will likely entitle you to an Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS) grant. This will give you up to £500 off the cost of a fully installed charge point at home. Certain criteria need to be met, and off-street parking needs to be available too.

Customers can buy an OLEV approved charge point from any supplier, as long as it is also fitted by an OLEV approved installer in order to qualify for the EVHS. There are a number of different points and prices on the market so it is worth shopping about beforehand so you know what’s on offer. Tesla also offers customers its own home EV charge point.

 

Charging a Tesla Model 3 on public networks

tesla model 3 public charging

The UK has a large number of public EV charging networks, with some offering national coverage and others only found in a specific region. The major UK-wide networks include BP Chargemaster (Polar), Ecotricity, Pod Point, and Charge Your Car.

Payment and access methods across networks vary, with some networks providing an RFID card and others a smartphone app to use their services. While most require an account to be set up before use, some rapid units with contactless PAYG card readers are starting to be installed.

Although many EV charge points are free to use, the majority of fast and rapid chargers require payment. Charging tariffs tend to comprise a flat connection fee, a cost per charging time (pence per hour) and/or a cost per energy consumed (pence per kWh). For more information about network tariffs, visit Zap-Map’s public charge point networks guides.


tesla model 3 driving
 
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