Free Supercharging on Tesla’s Supercharger Network is one of Tesla’s best-known early perks, and transferable Free Unlimited Supercharging is a great selling point when you’re ready to put your Tesla on the market (and a really fantastic financial promotion to take advantage of if you are looking to buy). The problem is knowing whether or not Free Supercharging will transfer to the next owner. Tesla has offered the Free Unlimited Supercharging promotion in so many variations over the years that it can be tricky to figure out if you can offer your buyer the same perk once the vehicle changes hands.
We’ve done part of the Free Supercharging detective work for you. In this blog post, we’ll lay out most of the Free Supercharging transfer scenarios by model, give a brief overview of figuring out your Free Supercharging type, and discuss the best way to sell your used Tesla with Free Supercharging included (good news, buyers: it’s also the best way to find a used Tesla with Free Supercharging!).
Tesla Free Unlimited Supercharging—Does it Transfer to New Owners?
Tesla offered Free Supercharging for life (the life of the vehicle, that is, not the owner, though there was a lot of confusion about that when the promotion was first offered) on only a few of their vehicles, and even then only for a few years. We’ve sorted these Free Unlimited Supercharging scenarios out by model:
Since several variations of Free Supercharging have been offered on the Model S, figuring out transferability of Free Unlimited Supercharging on the Model S is more complicated than on any other Tesla vehicle. Only Free Unlimited Supercharging for the life of the vehicle can transfer to a new owner, and even then, it only transfers under certain circumstances. Any other Supercharging promotion, such as time-limited Free Supercharging or Tesla’s Supercharging credits, is non-transferable.
From what we know about when Unlimited Free Supercharging was offered (either at purchase or retroactively between 2012-2017), there are 40+ year/model combinations for the Model S where Free Unlimited Supercharging transfers a new owner under ideal circumstances. Please note that these are potential transfer situations; as Tesla has reduced their Free Unlimited Supercharging promotion over the years, they have started to strip this perk from some vehicles (see the discussion in the final section of this blog post for more info).
Two early trim options of the Model S were either not capable of Supercharging or at least not enabled for Supercharging: the Model S 40 and the first generation Model S 60 (2012-2014). Owners of the 60 were offered the option to enable Supercharging, so some of them can have Free Unlimited Supercharging included. However, the 40 doesn’t have Supercharging capability unless the owner paid to upgrade to a 60 with Supercharging. While the Model S 40 falls into the time period where the Free Unlimited Promotion was offered on the Model S, it remains an outlier since it cannot access Tesla’s Supercharger Network anyway.
Here’s a chart to help you get a visual on which years Tesla Free Unlimited Supercharging transfers for the Model S:
|60 (if Supercharging enabled)||60 (if Supercharging enabled)||60||60|
Tesla began to discontinue their Free Unlimited Supercharging for the life of the vehicle promotion at the beginning of 2017, so while some 2017 Model S vehicles potentially still have the transferable version of this perk, most will not. Here are the possible 2017 Model S scenarios for transferrable Free Unlimited Supercharging:
Model S: Ordered By 1/15/2017 and Delivered Before 4/15/2017
The Model S has been a part of Free Unlimited Supercharging promotions after the 2017 change, but these promotions limit Tesla’s Free Unlimited Supercharging for the Model S to a single owner (it does not transfer).
While owner referral promotions have netted several Model 3s Free Unlimited Supercharging, this variation of the perk is not transferable to the next owner.
The Model X began its time in 2016 with Free Supercharging included, and the Model X trims in the chart below initially included transferable Free Unlimited Supercharging:
At the beginning of 2017, Tesla announced that it was no longer going to offer Free Unlimited Supercharging on the Model X after January 1st (later changed to the 15th) of 2017. A few vehicles manufactured and delivered in the January-April timeline still made it to customers before the cutoff point, though, so some of these can still have transferable Free Unlimited Supercharging.
Here are the Model X variants that were available to order with transferable Free Unlimited Supercharging during the 2017 January-April timeline:
Model X: Ordered By 1/15/2017 and Delivered Before 4/15/2017
Like the Model S, the Model X has been a part of Free Unlimited Supercharging promotions after the 2017 change, but these later promotions limit the Model X Free Unlimited Supercharging option to a single owner (it does not transfer).
No matter what a seller may tell you, there is no transferable Free Supercharging for a pre-owned Model Y. Free Unlimited Supercharging has not been offered on the Model Y, but there have been time-limited promotions that allow free access to the Supercharger Network for 1-2 years. However, these promotions will not transfer to a new owner even if the Model Y is sold within that time frame. Referral promotions can gain you credits towards Supercharging, but these are also non-transferable.
The original Tesla Roadster (P1, 2.0, 2.5 Base, 2.5 Sport, 3.0) was not designed with Supercharging capability, so Free Unlimited Supercharging for the life of the vehicle would not apply.
How to Check if Your Tesla Has Free Supercharging
While determining the type of Free Supercharging that your Tesla has on your own can be a little complicated, you can do a quick check by opening your My Tesla account to “Manage” -> “View Details” to see if the Free Unlimited Supercharging option is there. If you do have Free Unlimited Supercharging, you can check option codes in the source HTML of the page through your browser to see which kind of Free Supercharging you have (Free Supercharging for life of the vehicle, limited to one owner, time bound, etc). We covered option codes more extensively in last week’s blog post, so check that out for more details.
Remember, you can always call Tesla and ask if you have Free Supercharging and whether it will transfer. While it may take some extra time (and possibly some argument, which is why having a copy of the purchase agreement and the above tables handy is a good idea ), confirming your Free Supercharging situation with a Tesla representative should be more authoritative than any other method.
If you are looking to buy a used Model X or Model S with Free Supercharging, getting the seller to confirm their Free Unlimited Supercharging transferability is important. Beyond the year and trim of the vehicle, you may need to know the purchase and delivery date (especially important for early 2017) and how the vehicle has changed hands over the years. If possible, meeting the seller at a Supercharger and confirming that the car does show Free Supercharging (or no price) as it charges can help you confirm if a pre-owned Model S or Model X that falls within the 2012-2016 timeline still has transferable Free Supercharging (2017 is a little less certain with this method as it can also have non-transferable Free Unlimited Supercharging).
How Can I Find a Used Tesla With Free Unlimited Supercharging?
So here’s the frustrating news: buying or selling a used Tesla that falls into the right time frame for Free Unlimited Supercharging to transfer to the next owner isn’t a guarantee. Since determining that the Free Unlimited Supercharging for life of the car was financially unsustainable, . Basically, if the car has changed hands through Tesla after 2018, they may have removed Free Unlimited Supercharging from a car that should otherwise still have it.
Tesla also strips the Free Unlimited Supercharging Promotion from 3rd party dealership sales. Even if the Model S or Model X has kept Free Unlimited Supercharging in the past, Tesla may remove the option upon the transfer of the vehicle between private parties if a dealership was ever involved.
Simply put, unless Tesla is feeling generous with part of their Used Inventory, private party sales are the only way to buy or sell a used Tesla with transferable Unlimited Free Supercharging.
The good news for buyers and sellers of used Teslas? Finding a used Tesla Model X or Model S with Free Unlimited Supercharging that transfers to a new owner can be as easy as checking out our listings right here on Find My Electric! We encourage sellers to promote Free Unlimited Supercharging on our listings if their Model S or Model X has that option; after all, the added energy-cost savings of Free Supercharging for life is worth advertising. For buyers, there are still quite a few used Teslas with Free Unlimited Supercharging out there in the hands of private owners. Take a look at our used Tesla listings and see what Model S or Model X Free Unlimited Supercharging deals you can score today!