One of the last big holdouts in the auto industry has finally come around, as Volkswagen Group is adopting Tesla’s NACS charging connector. The Volkswagen Group’s brands –Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche, and Scout– which are present in the North American market, announced a plan to implement the Tesla-developed North American Charging Standard (NACS) charging connector in its future products beginning in 2025.
In the case of Scout Motors, which is Volkswagen Group’s latest project and does not have electric cars for sale yet, the NACS charging port will be installed right from the launch of its first model.
Meanwhile, for Volkswagen, Porsche, and Audi –currently using the Combined Charging System (CCS1)– the switch will begin in 2025. The three brands also revealed that they “are exploring adapter solutions for existing vehicles to access the Tesla Supercharger network, starting in 2025“. This one element is different from the vast majority of other OEMs, which announced adapters would be available at some point in 2024.
As part of the agreement, Volkswagen Group’s electric vehicles will gain access to the Tesla Supercharging network in North America, which includes more than 15,000 stalls.
It’s worth noting that Volkswagen Group also has its own fast-charging networks –Electrify America in the U.S. and Electrify Canada in Canada– which jointly operate more than 3,800 DC fast-charging outlets. The chargers are currently CCS1-compatible, but a plan to add NACS plugs by 2025 was already announced in the summer of 2023.
It seems that 2025 will be pivotal for the electrification of the Volkswagen Group in North America. Details of the planned integration of the Tesla North American Charging Standard into specific models will follow as the launch date of 2025 nears, the company explained in the statement.
Pablo Di Si, the President and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America, said:
“This is great news for our electric vehicle customers in the North American Region. This potentially provides them with access to more than 15,000 additional charging points as well as the current near-4,000 DC fast charging outlets operated by Electrify America. It would mean that customers of our fast-selling electric vehicles like the Volkswagen ID.4 will have access to an extensive and growing charging network.”
Rebecca Tinucci, the Senior Director of Charging at Tesla, said:
“Earlier this year, the North American Charging standard was just an idea. Today, with the VW Group’s commitment, almost every major automotive manufacturer is onboard, rallying behind a shared vision of improving charging experiences for all EV drivers. This is only the beginning of our industry-wide efforts to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.”
Timo Resch, the President and CEO of Porsche Cars North America, said:
“We strive to provide an exceptional and seamless customer experience, and when it comes to charging, greater choice is a key factor in delivering this. Today our customers already have access to thousands of charging sites across America thanks to Electrify America, with existing stations being renewed and new sites being added weekly. We are proud to announce that in 2025 we will also partner with Tesla to significantly expand the network of chargers throughout the U.S. that will become available to our customers.”
Scott Keogh, the President and CEO of Scout Motors, said:
“Our future customers are at the heart of every decision we make as we design our new Scout vehicles. Engineering NACS connectors into our vehicles from the onset will give Scout customers access to a vast and quickly expanding fast-charging network spanning North America.”
With the Volkswagen Group on board, the list of automakers that have signed up to adopt the NACS is missing only one big group (Stellantis) and a few smaller brands or startups. Here are the OEMs that confirmed the switch in chronological order) Ford, General Motors, Rivian, Volvo, Polestar, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Fisker, Honda (with Acura), Jaguar, Hyundai, Kia, Genesis, BMW Group (BMW, MINI, and Rolls-Royce), Toyota (with Lexus), Subaru, and Lucid.