The presence of Tesla Superchargers in a country is a sure sign the company is interested in selling a respectable volume of its vehicles there. At the moment Tesla is focused on rolling out its Supercharger network in China and Europe as it seeks to capitalize on those lucrative markets. There are currently 94 stations in North America, 17 in Europe, and the first two in China have just come online with many more on the way in each market.
Luckily for the Aussies, a thread on the Tesla Motors Club forum contains a recent post with an update from JB Straubel, CTO of Tesla. “We will develop, in time, a supercharger network in Australia,” Straubel said. “Given the multiple projects we manage at the moment, the first superchargers should not be expected until early 2015 - that's an estimate and not a guaranteed date.”
Straubel also indicated a few other details about charging, all of which will be officially released with the Australian website. Australians are surely getting excited about the imminent arrival of Model S after such a long wait; the vehicle launched in North America in 2012 and has collected heaps of rave reviews since.
Tesla has delivered a right-hand drive Model S in Sydney for test drives, but at the moment is only taking reservations online and does not have a showroom with public hours. The company is working on production of a right-hand drive version for the UK market that will eventually allow the vehicle to be exported to every corner of the world, including Oz.
By this time next year, it is very likely that a few hundred lucky Aussies will have their Teslas and will be able to charge up at the first of several Supercharger stations. Tesla has a lot on its plate, what with Gigafactories and new model launches and expansion in Europe and China, but it should be able to divert some resources to install a few Superchargers in critical locations Down Under.
The country’s unique geography and demography would suggest that Superchargers will be placed strategically along the boomerang coast to allow free all-electric travel between most of Australia’s largest cities (sorry, Perth). At the bare minimum, the route from Adelaide to Melbourne would likely require two Superchargers; Melbourne to Canberra could theoretically only require one Supercharger, and another station in the capital would provide enough range to reach Sydney; the route north along the Gold Coast to Brisbane would then require two more Superchargers.
There you go, Tesla; install a Supercharger in each of the five cities listed above, plus five more along major highways and just like that you’ve covered 85% of the country’s population with only 10 Superchargers. Too easy.