Tesla's Supercharger Congestion Fees: Owner's Manual Reveals More Details

By Not a Tesla App Staff
Tesla introduces a new Supercharger congestion fee
Tesla introduces a new Supercharger congestion fee
Not a Tesla App

Tesla's Supercharger network offers a fast and convenient way for Tesla vehicle owners to charge their cars. However, with the growing number of Tesla vehicles and other supported EVs on the road, some Supercharger stations may experience high levels of congestion. To address this, Tesla has implemented a new, congestion fee at certain busy locations. Thanks to updates to Tesla's owner's manual, we now have some additional details on this new fee.

Congestion Fees: Purpose and Application

Congestion fees, similar to idle fees, are additional charges that apply under specific circumstances at busy Supercharger stations. The rationale behind these fees is to encourage drivers to move their vehicles promptly and discourage charging to a higher percentage, where charging speeds are drastically slower.

When Do Congestion Fees Apply?

  • Congestion fees only incur at select, often busy, Supercharger locations.
  • As opposed to idle fees, which apply when the Supercharger is 50% or more occupied, congestion fees will only apply when the station is 100% full, and your vehicle's battery charge exceeds the "congestion limit."
  • Similar to idle fees, there's a grace period of five minutes before congestion fees will apply. After five minutes you'll then be for congestion fees until your vehicle is either moved or reaches its charge limit. If your vehicle reaches the charging limit, at which point it stops charging and the vehicle hasn't moved, idle fees would then apply until the Supercharger falls below 50% capacity.

According to the latest owner's manual, Tesla isn't being specific about what the congestion limit is. It's presumed to be 80%, although it's possible that it could vary depending on the level of congestion, change over time or even vary depending on the model's charging curve.

Tesla recently changed the recommended daily charging level for most of their vehicle from 90% to 80%, which could be partially due to these new congestion fees. Since most owners will now have their vehicle charge level set to 80%, they won't accrue surprise congestion fees at these Supercharger locations.

Supercharger Information

Tesla does an great job of laying out Supercharger wait times, prices and fees. They recently also starting predicting Supercharger wait times based on your time of arrival.

Tesla introduces a new Supercharger congestion fee
Tesla introduces a new Supercharger congestion fee
LuizFl/X

The Supercharger's rate structure, including whether idle or congestion fees apply, can be seen on the Supercharger's pop-up on the vehicle's screen (update 2023.38+).

While congestion fees are another fee on top of the already high Supercharger prices in a lot of areas, this change is expected to decrease Supercharger congestion by discouraging owners from charging at slower speeds.

Tesla Update 2024.20 Lets Matrix Headlights Adapt to Curves, Adds Supercharger Leaderboards and More

By Karan Singh

Tesla has been on a roll with updates recently, and now update 2024.20 was released to employees over the weekend. This update builds on the many features in the Spring Update and adds a few big improvements.

Adaptive Headlights

New updates to Adaptive Headlights are arriving for European cars with matrix headlights. The new update allows the headlights to adapt to curves in the road ahead of you, enabling better illumination. Having the adaptive headlights work for curves is the second major update for matrix headlights. Update 2024.8 added adaptive high-beam support, letting your high beams stay on longer by turning off select LEDs in the headlights.

Update 2024.2 first brought adaptive high beams to the new Model 3, before it was later introduced to older vehicles with matrix headlights. At this time, it’s not clear whether the improvements to headlights around curves will be exclusive to matrix headlights or also support the new Model 3.

How to Tell If You Have Matrix Headlights

How do you know if you have matrix headlights on your Tesla? On the outer edge of the headlight, there will be a large, round projector dome, like in the image below. If there isn’t a dome, those are standard non-matrix headlights.
Another way to tell is to run a stock light show while facing a wall. If the Tesla logo, in letters, pops up, you have matrix headlights.

Matrix headlights have a circular dome projector on the outer edge.
Matrix headlights have a circular dome projector on the outer edge.

For now, North America still does not have adaptive headlight support, mostly due to legislative and testing issues in the United States. The US recently approved adaptive headlights, and a Tesla employee mentioned they’re working on it. Canada has legalized adaptive headlights since 2018, so we see this deployed in North America at some point in the future.

Supercharger Races on Beach Buggy Racing 2

Tesla is still improving its Arcade functionality, with the addition of local leaderboards at Superchargers in Beach Buggy Racing 2. It appears that each individual Supercharger site will have its own leaderboard, which drivers can compete on while their cars charge. Tesla says there will also be special races to compete in this Beach Buggy Racing 2 update.

Tesla owners can plug in and play with a controller, the touchscreen, or their vehicle’s steering wheel. Thanks to steer-by-wire on the Cybertruck, the actual wheels on the truck won’t move like they do on other Tesla models when playing the game.

We continue to hope that future refreshes to the S, 3, X, and Y will eventually receive steer-by-wire as well, as the feature has quite a few unique uses, whether driving or parked.

Autopilot Strikes and Suspension

An updated Autopilot Strike system, similar to the one that is on Tesla’s upcoming FSD V12.4 update, is on 2024.20 as well. At five strikes, users will be suspended from the use of Autopilot like before, but now Tesla will remove a strike for each 7-day period the driver goes without receiving a strike.

FSD 12.4 also improves vision-based monitoring and removes the steering wheel nag, but that’s not in this latest Tesla update, but will likely be added in the future.

Tesla tends to release new Autopilot features in their FSD updates before releasing them to the wider public for regular Autopilot use.

Hot Weather Improvements

The last set of user-end improvements coming in 2024.20 will be related to hot weather, the opposite of 2024.2.6’s cold weather update. This set of changes intends to improve AUTO mode HVAC performance in hot weather, helping to cool down the cabin faster, while also maintaining comfort at lower noise levels.

There have been several updates in the last six months to Tesla’s HVAC systems, all helping to deliver a quieter, more comfortable experience, with one of the last major ones introducing cool-down or warm-up periods before blowing air into the car cabin.

Tesla Software in China Shows 'Employee FSD Beta Program' as Tesla Prepares for Launch

By Karan Singh

Chris Zeng, a Chinese Tesla content creator on X, recently posted an image with Tesla’s Spring Update – 2024.14, with the words “Employee FSD Beta Program: Registered.”

He also confirmed that although this text appears in the vehicle, there are no actual FSD features enabled yet.

FSD Beta Coming to China

Recently, Tesla began to offer Enhanced Autopilot subscriptions in China, and Chinese corporate giant Baidu announced that it will be providing enhanced 3D mapping for Tesla vehicles as well.

On a recent trip to China, Elon Musk spoke with Premier Li Qiang on the rollout of FSD to China. Later follow-ups said that “it may be possible [for FSD to arrive in China] very soon”.

FSD Shadow Mode

Tesla’s cars can operate FSD in Shadow Mode – which means that the vehicle is running FSD in the background without any real output except analytics. This is a common software practice that lets software engineers compare the process they’re testing against an existing known output and compare the results. In this case, Tesla compares what FSD would do to what the driver does, and any discrepancies are reported back to be analyzed.

With this information, we could guess that FSD has been operating in Shadow Mode in China for a while, and this new Employee FSD Beta Program will be the beginning of employee testing in China, providing even more data for the end-to-end process that is FSD V12.

FSD Beta, not Supervised FSD

Most interestingly, the photo refers to “FSD Beta” instead of “Supervised,” which Tesla started using with FSD 12.3.3 in March 2024. This could imply that FSD in China isn’t ready for a “Supervised” variant, and it’s considered to be in more of a testing stage.

In the photo, we can also see that it says “Wave 1,” which is what Tesla calls the group of employees who receive “pre-release” Tesla updates on their personal vehicles. Wave 1 serves as a final test for software before its released to the public. In most cases, the software is rolled out publicly within a couple of weeks, however, there have been times when bugs are found and Tesla releases revision before a public release.

Release Date

Prior to larger releases here in North America, we generally see Tesla ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) testing and verification vehicles on the roads, which have not yet been spotted in China.

Whether these vehicles will be needed in China is up for debate, but once FSD features begin rolling out to employees, we should get a better idea of a public release in China.

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