Tesla NACS Officially Designated as the Standard Charging Solution for North America

Dec 24, 2023


In a groundbreaking development for the electric vehicle (EV) charging landscape, the North American Charging Standard (NACS), previously recognized as Tesla's proprietary charging solution, has now attained the official status of a harmonized connector standard. This transformation comes as a result of the recent publication of the 'SAE J3400 North American Charging Standard (NACS) Electric Vehicle Coupler Technical Information Report' by the harmonization organization, SAE International. The rapid standardization process prompted the US Department for Transportation (DoT) to delve into infrastructure funding discussions, with notable players such as Volkswagen joining the NACS initiative.

Types of EV Charging Standards

Electric vehicles (EVs) have ushered in a new era of transportation, and with this evolution comes a diverse array of charging standards designed to meet the varied needs of EV owners. Here's an overview of some prominent types of EV charging standards, including the integration of the Tesla Destination Charger:

AC Charging Standards:

Type 1 (SAE J1772): Prevalent in North America and Japan, Type 1 connectors are the backbone for Level 1 and Level 2 charging. They provide up to 240 volts.

Type 2 (IEC 62196-2): Widely adopted in Europe and beyond, Type 2 connectors accommodate both AC and DC charging. They are versatile and commonly found in home and public charging stations.

Tesla Destination Charger: Tesla's Commitment to Charging Ecosystem: Beyond the Supercharger network, Tesla has introduced the Destination Charger program. Strategically placed at hotels, restaurants, and public spaces, the Tesla Destination Charger complements the Supercharger network, providing convenient and reliable charging options. This initiative enhances the overall accessibility and convenience of charging for Tesla owners.

DC Fast Charging Standards:

CHAdeMO: Originating from Japan, CHAdeMO is a fast-charging standard employed by several Asian automakers. It excels in high-power DC charging and is commonly used at quick charging stations.

CCS (Combined Charging System)

CCS Combo 1 (SAE J1772 Combo): Dominant in North America, SAE J1772 standard merges Type 1 with additional pins for DC fast charging.

CCS Combo 2 (IEC 62196-3): Widely used in Europe, it integrates Type 2 with additional pins for DC fast charging.

Tesla Supercharger

Tesla Connector: Exclusive to Tesla vehicles, the Supercharger network employs a proprietary connector for high-speed charging. Notably, Tesla has taken steps to align with the North American Charging Standard (NACS) for improved interoperability. Additionally, Tesla has expanded its charging infrastructure with the Tesla Destination Charger.

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Wireless Charging Standards

SAE J2954: Emerging as a standard for wireless charging, SAE J2954 ensures compatibility among various wireless charging systems, contributing to the simplification of wireless charging infrastructure. This standard is crucial for the seamless integration of EVs into daily routines.

GB/T (Guan Bo)

GB/T 20234.2: Mandated in China, GB/T is China's national standard for AC and DC charging. It supports both slow and fast charging and plays a pivotal role in China's burgeoning EV market.

Inductive Charging

Qi Standard: Commonly associated with wireless charging in various devices, the Qi standard has also found application in some EVs, utilizing inductive charging for added convenience. The integration of inductive charging aligns with the broader trend towards user-friendly EV experiences.

Choosing the Right Standard

When purchasing an EV, it is crucial to consider the charging standards compatible with the vehicle. Many modern EVs come equipped with multiple connectors, ensuring flexibility and access to various charging networks. Public charging infrastructure often supports multiple standards to cater to a broader range of EVs.

As the EV market continues to evolve, standardization efforts aim to simplify the charging experience, making it more accessible and user-friendly. Manufacturers, governments, and industry organizations collaborate to establish common standards that promote interoperability and support the widespread adoption of electric vehicles. Understanding these charging standards is essential for both EV manufacturers and consumers, contributing to the seamless integration of EVs into our daily lives.

Unprecedented Speed and Industry Impact of NACS

Released in record time, less than six months after SAE's announcement of standardizing the Tesla connector, the SAE J3400 NACS Technical Information Report has garnered attention for its swift adoption. The DoT acknowledged this speed as "unprecedented" in its press release. Described by SAE as a standard set to "dramatically increase access to charging for electric vehicle drivers across North America," NACS stands out for its key feature – access to Tesla's extensive Supercharger network. This unique advantage has played a pivotal role in encouraging international manufacturers to adopt the NACS standard.

From Proprietary to Industry Standard

Tesla, known for its innovative approach to EV technology, released the design of its proprietary plug in November 2022, subsequently renaming it the "North American Charging Standard" (NACS). Notably, Tesla's strategic move to open up NACS specifications preceded any non-proprietary harmonization efforts. The momentum behind NACS gained significant traction after major automotive players like Ford and GM announced their plans to switch to Tesla's charging port. This wave of adoption set the stage for NACS to evolve from a proprietary Tesla connector to a de facto industry standard.

Volkswagen's Entry and Future Plans

While Ford, GM, and other major automakers swiftly embraced NACS, the Volkswagen Group recently confirmed its alignment with the standard following the publication of the SAE standard J3400 TIR. Starting from 2025, new electric vehicles from VW, Audi, Porsche, and Scout brands will feature the Tesla charging port. Existing EVs within the Volkswagen Group will gain access to Tesla's Supercharger network through an adapter. This move reflects the industry's collaborative effort to standardize EV charging solutions.

NACS charger

Technical Advancements and Standardization Process

The SAE J3400 NACS Technical Information Report lays the groundwork for a harmonized connector standard, fostering compatibility for suppliers and manufacturers across North America. Rodney McGee, head of the NACS task force at SAE, emphasized the broad interoperability of NACS, providing a unified, compact connector for both AC and DC charging. This approach simplifies power feeds for charging, reducing infrastructure costs and enhancing overall efficiency.

Government Initiatives and Future Prospects

The DoT has signaled its commitment to the evolving EV landscape by announcing plans to gather feedback on updating minimum standards and requirements for charging stations. This information will be integrated into regulations for government-funded charging stations, ensuring that NACS becomes a standard inclusion in NEVI-funded infrastructure. The majority of automakers have pledged to adopt NACS on vehicles beginning in 2025, with adaptors available for current owners.

Volkswagen's Adaptation and Expanding Charging Access

Volkswagen, in response to the standardization, is exploring adapter solutions for existing vehicles, aiming to expand customer charging access to Tesla's extensive Supercharger network, comprising over 15,000 Superchargers. The manufacturer highlighted its existing network of more than 3,800 fast-charging outlets operated by Electrify America and Electrify Canada.

Industry Collaboration and Future Outlook

Rebecca Tinucci, Senior Director of Charging at Tesla, reflected on the journey of the North American Charging Standard, emphasizing its evolution from an idea to a widely accepted standard. With the commitment of the Volkswagen Group, nearly every major automotive manufacturer is now on board with NACS. Tesla's foray into acting as a charging hardware provider, with BP ordering Supercharger stations for its rest stops, further illustrates the transformative impact of NACS on the broader industry.

The harmonization of NACS marks a pivotal moment in the electrification of transportation, underscoring the industry's commitment to providing a seamless and standardized charging experience for EV users across North America. As the SAE standardization process progresses, NACS stands as a testament to the collaborative efforts shaping the future of electric vehicle charging.

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Amproad's Pioneering Commitment: Navigating the Future of EV Charging Standards

In the rapidly evolving landscape of electric vehicle (EV) charging standards, the North American Charging Standard (NACS) has emerged as the official charging solution for North America, signifying a transformative shift in the industry. As major automotive manufacturers, including the Volkswagen Group, commit to adopting NACS, it is crucial to acknowledge the pivotal role played by key industry players such as Amproad in embracing and contributing to this change.

Amproad, a leading professional Level 2 EV charger manufacturer, stands at the forefront of this charging revolution. With a commitment to innovation and adaptability, Amproad recognizes the importance of satisfying the various charging standards that define the contemporary EV landscape. As the automotive industry converges around NACS, Amproad pledges to enhance its efforts to align with and support this standard, ensuring seamless integration and compatibility across diverse EV models.

The commitment of Amproad is not only a testament to its dedication to customer satisfaction but also a strategic move to stay ahead in a dynamic market. By actively participating in the adoption of NACS and other emerging standards, Amproad aims to contribute to the broader goal of establishing a unified and standardized charging infrastructure. This approach aligns with the industry's collective effort to simplify the charging experience for EV users and facilitate widespread EV adoption.

Amproad's forward-thinking stance underscores the collaborative spirit within the EV ecosystem. The company's willingness to adapt to changing standards reflects an understanding of the importance of interoperability and accessibility in the charging network. As the automotive landscape continues to evolve, Amproad's proactive approach positions it as a key player in shaping the future of EV charging solutions.

Lastly, the official designation of Tesla NACS as the standard charging solution for North America marks a significant milestone. With industry leaders like Amproad actively embracing and contributing to this change, the outlook for a standardized, efficient, and user-friendly EV charging infrastructure looks promising, fostering the continued growth of the electric vehicle market.