edatoakrun wrote:From its inception, "free...forever" has been structured as a pyramid scheme.
No, it was in part a marketing expense (some car companies actually spend gigantic amounts of money on advertising instead — I think Tesla's marketing expenditures are much more useful). The idea was to change the perception of EVs as limited range local commuter cars, which it did: the Supercharger network was a paradigm shift in EV utility.
Yes, if Tesla is able to sell large numbers of BEVs in the future to owners who are willing to make large payments for access to the sites, then the losses it has taken and will continue to take, on drivers like yourself, may be manageable.
Success will depend to a large extent on how soon Tesla ends "free...forever" to new buyers, as every BEV it sells with "free...forever" is an additional future liability.
As I have said previously, I think Tesla's plan to allow the first ~million Tesla buyers "free...forever" is unsustainable, as it is unlikely to ever sell enough BEVs and also convince the buyers to pay enough for charge site access in the future, to support so top-heavy a pyramid.
Well, I can't recall if it was mentioned in this thread but the Model 3 will have a pay-per-use option. My sense from reading many comments from prospective "3" buyers is that this approach will be more popular than a one time unlimited use option.
This suggests that Tesla won't have anything close to a million cars on the free forever plan. Regardless, the cost of providing the service to perhaps 200-300k cars, with unlimited access, is fairly small (only a tiny proportion of their miles, on average, will be from Superchargers). The $2000 per car fee for Supercharger access for the life of the car — whether paid directly or as part of the price of the car — provides a lot of capital for building and maintaining the network. The network will get additional revenue from the PPU charge paid by Model 3 drivers. My guess is that the unlimited access option for the Model 3 will be time-limited or linked to the owner, not something that runs with the car as with the current Model S and X. If so, it could be a continuing source of revenue for the system as the car changes hands. Just speculation on my part, though. Anyway, I don't expect many Model 3 buyers to choose this option because PPU will be less expensive for most.
Perhaps you will be correct and the Supercharger network will collapse and Tesla will go bankrupt, as you so fervently wish (based on the tone of your hundreds of posts on the subject). I'm hoping otherwise and can think of several other scenarios that will allow both the Supercharger network and Tesla to survive in one form or another.
Eventually I expect that QC stations will become so common along highways that the presence of a proprietary network will become unnecessary. Five years ago, in the early LEAF days, I wouldn't have even guessed that 2000 mile EV road trips would have been possible
, much less downright easy and routine. Nowadays I get the sense that EVs really will
start to supplant much of the ICEV market by 2030, something I would have thought was wildly optimistic back then. QC stations may well become as common as gas stations are now.
We shall see.