The Morning After: Ford and Tesla sign electric vehicle charging pact

The Morning After: Ford and Tesla sign electric vehicle charging pact

Ford became the first major automaker to get into bed with Tesla after the US government pushed to make electric vehicle charging more widely available. The automaker has signed an agreement starting in the spring of 2024 so that some Ford electric vehicles can reduce power at certain Tesla Supercharger stations. As part of the pact, Ford said, starting with the 2025 model year, it will switch to Tesla’s open-source North American Charging Standard (NACS) on its vehicles. Meanwhile, existing models that still use the world-standard Combined Charging System (CCS) (more or less) will be able to take a Tesla-designed adapter to fill the gap.

The deal is surprising, especially given the relative power, size and prestige of the two companies involved. Ford, one of the world’s biggest automakers, is ceding control of its charger’s future to a relative minnow, despite having built up a massive own-brand charging network. Not to mention, it risks creating a NACS-CCS EV charging format war, which could erode consumer confidence in EVs. After all, if you stop at a gas station anywhere in the United States, there should be a one-size-fits-all way to get fuel into your tank without worrying about pipe size.

–Dan Cooper

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