Tesla to Offer CHAdeMO Adaptor on Model S Sold in Japan; Is U.S. Next?

By · January 14, 2013

CHAdeMO connector

The CHAdeMO connector.

Tesla Motors recently announced that the Model S will go on sale in Japan in mid-2013 and when it launches there, the electric sedan will be equipped with a connector that allows owners to use Japan's vast network of more than 1,900 CHAdeMO quick-charge stations.

The news was first reported by the Japanese blog MONOist, and then picked up by Greencarreports.com.

CHAdeMO is standard equipment on most electric vehicles sold in Japan, but Tesla elected to use its own proprietary connector, which means that U.S. owners of the Model S have not been able to use CHAdeMO chargers. Tesla touts its Supercharger network as far superior to CHAdeMO.

Model S connector

The Tesla Model S connector.

Tesla has not indicated if it will make the CHAdeMO adapter available in the U.S., but with the part soon to be in production, it would be a logical step.

Meanwhile, German and American automakers are beginning to roll out plug-in vehicles with their own "combo cord" connector and protocol. There's little evidence that the debate about Quick Charging standards will be resolved anytime soon.

The availability of the Tesla CHAdeMO adapter reveals not only the technical feasibility of adapting various Quick Chargers to different cars, something that has been disputed, but the possibility that eventually EVs will come with adapter kits (much like those used by world travelers plugging in electrical devices when traveling overseas).

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