Gearhead News

April 14, 2021
World’s Largest Tesla Supercharger Station Planned Halfway Between LA and San Francisco

It looks like Tesla has filed an application to expand its Supercharger facilities at Harris Ranch in Coalinga, California, an existing site that could be set for a major upgrade by way of increasing capacity nearly five times to 100 charge points. 

We know Tesla has been thinking big lately with its Supercharger plans: three years ago it filed to try and build a retro-tastic drive-in that happened to charge your car while serving you burgers in Santa Monica. It never came to fruition but the EV maker recently filed again to try a similar thing, maybe with up to 62 chargers and clips of the “100 best movies.” This potential deal at Harris Ranch separates, however, as it could become the world’s largest Supercharger site.

Facebook: Harris Ranch Inn & Restaurant

Not happy to go solely off social media posts for the Harris Ranch Supercharger expansion, The Drive looked up the planning application. It’s still pending review, though it explicitly states its purpose for the “installation of electric vehicle charging equipment.” There are currently 13 superchargers at the location, which probably get a fair amount of use given their location midway up Interstate 5 between Los Angeles and San Francisco.

The restaurant itself posted last week that the application had been filed, describing it as the world’s largest supercharger site:

   

One-hundred Superchargers (or even more) would indeed be the world’s biggest site. The current leader by charger volume is a 72-stall facility in Shanghai, with the largest in the U.S. being just down the road from Harris Ranch in Firebaugh, where their 56-stall site has been up and running since last year.

The Drive reached out to Harris Ranch to check in on the numbers but we’ve yet to hear back, so we can’t tell you for sure whether they’re running for 100 Tesla owners in their car park, but it’d also be a pretty weird thing to lie about, on balance.

A slightly weird fact is that Harris Ranch is California’s largest beef producer, which means it might pretty much offset all the emissions it saves from charging cars via, um, cow farts. But being willing to expand its Supercharger operation so massively shows that there’s something profitable in having people stopping by to charge. 

Without wanting to rewrite the plot of the movie Cars, maybe EV charging sites like this could be the revival for the kinda roadside Americana Elon’s best-of-movies drive-in concept takes a nostalgia hit off?

Got a weird story about EVs and cattle ranching? Let me know on hazel@thedrive.com