Tesla has stopped including its mobile connector with new car purchases, and will instead sell the accessory separately for a cheaper $200 price, Tesla CEO Elon Musk confirmed in a series of tweets. The mobile connector comes with an adapter that allows drivers to charge their cars from a standard household outlet, with other adapters available for purchase separately.
Based on feedback received, we will drop mobile connector price to $200 & make it easy to order with car.
Note, mobile connector is not needed if you have a Tesla wall connector or to use Superchargers.
Recommend installing Tesla wall connector well before car arrives.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 17, 2022
On Saturday night, Twitter user @Tesla_Adri found that Tesla updated its support page to note that the mobile connector costs $400. Tesla previously listed the mobile connector as an accessory that “comes with vehicle.”
In a reply to a user’s reaction to the situation, Musk confirmed that the company will no longer include connectors with purchases. “Usage statistics were super low, so seemed wasteful,” Musk explained, adding that Tesla “will be including more plug adapters with the mobile connector kit” in the future. It’s unclear which ones Tesla will start including with the kit.
Musk provided another update hours later, stating that, “based on user feedback,” Tesla will lower the price of the mobile connector to $200. He also said that Tesla will “make it easy” to order the mobile connector when purchasing a car, and encouraged customers to get a wall charger installed “well before” their car arrives.
The mobile connector is still listed as costing $400 on Tesla’s site, and you couldn’t purchase one even if you wanted to — the mobile connector is currently out of stock. That said, it’s unclear how long it has been out of stock, or whether a supply chain shortage is contributing to Tesla’s decision. Tesla didn’t immediately respond to The Verge’s request for comment (Tesla disbanded its public relations team in 2019 and typically doesn’t respond to inquiries from the media).
Reactions to Musk’s decision have been mixed. Although a mobile connector isn’t a necessity, as Tesla owners can charge their car from a wall charger installed at their home or at a charging station, some drivers say it’s comforting to have the mobile connector with them while traveling. The accessory can come in handy at campsites or when traveling in an area without charging stations, as it allows drivers to plug their car into a standard 120v outlet.
Some drivers also say the mobile connector servers as a much cheaper alternative to the expensive wall charger, while others say they rarely use it at all. Connectors with a 120v or 240v adapter come standard with other EVs, such as the Nissan Leaf, Ford Mustang Mach-E, Chevy Bolt, and all BMW EVs.
In 2020, Apple famously stopped including chargers with its new iPhones, with Samsung and Google following suit. Although it’s easy to see parallels between this situation and Tesla’s, it’s far too early to tell if Tesla’s move will create a domino effect among other EV makers.