Aptera prototype has a Tesla charge port. Are they partnering?

Discussion in 'Aptera' started by Domenick, Dec 11, 2020.

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  1. Domenick

    Domenick Administrator Staff Member

    There is a pic on the Aptera website (also below) showing the car being plugged in to what is clearly a Tesla socket.
    It seems an odd choice, seeing as all the other automakers use J1772 for AC charging and CCS 2 for DC fast-charging and that to actually use it and (maybe) have access to the Tesla Supercharger network. So, it seems natural to ask the question, is Aptera teaming with Tesla?

    Aptera-Tesla-plug.jpg
    And it's not just the charging connector. Aptera has said they will use 2170 cells and I understand there was some talk of sub-manufacturing in Nevada. Nevada, and this could totally just be a coincidence, is the home of Tesla Gigafactory 1, where they make 2170 cells with Panasonic.

    Now, the InsideEVs Podcast crew discussed this a bit during the show today. @Tom Moloughney spoke about a call with co-founder Chris Anthony and how it seemed he was getting a non-denial. Here's the podcast video cued to this conversation:


    So, what do you think? Partners? Also, is there any other Tesla tech you'd like to see in the Aptera?
     
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  3. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    Put a deposit down. Perfect car for me. Love the solar charging. On the charge port, can't imagine they'd use a proprietary charger port that only works at Tesla chargers. They'd have to contract with Tesla for charging and owners would be limited to Tesla public chargers on the road.

    Now if the Aptera had a deal with Tesla on charging AND they build the CCS adapter for the Tesla port so drivers could use the CCS standard charge port, that would be a great option.
     
    Domenick likes this.
  4. Domenick

    Domenick Administrator Staff Member

    There is an adapter for AC charging, so if the Aptera had a Tesla charge port, you could accept a charge from an AC charger, like you might find at Whole Foods. You just wouldn't be able to use CCS 2 DC fast chargers. Usually, Tesla has better and more reliable coverage, so I don't see this as a drawback. There are also rumors of an adaptor for CCS 2 DC fast chargers, but I'd want to see it actually tested before I get too excited.
     
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  5. HarryP

    HarryP New Member

    The guys at Aptera are all about efficiency. They are obsessive about it. And half of being efficient is being light weight. They brag about their "AI designed" suspension components that reduce their weight by 50%. They brag about their "lightweight transmission-line subwoofer" in their enhanced audio package. So of course they want to use the most lightweight charging plug & socket out there. Being able to connect to the largest fast charging network in the world would be secondary to them.

    Aptera's secret sauce is their unique composite, strong, lightweight and flexible body and the aerodynamic forms and microfluidic skin cooling system that unique body material (and their patented manufacturing system) allows them to use. They are buying most everything else in the Aptera off the shelf or semi-custom from suppliers around the world.

    So I think the guys on your podcast have it right. Aptera Motors really wants the Tesla connector. And it benefits Tesla by allowing them to say, "See we are willing to license our charging network like we said." Not to mention, the energy efficiency mantra of Aptera fits well with Tesla's mission statement.
     
  6. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    Thank you for that testimonial Elon.

    A proprietary plug is never the way to go.
     
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  8. HarryP

    HarryP New Member

    Well, proprietary plugs seem to work well enough for Apple customers.
    I'd rather have access to the Tesla network AND all the others. Its not an either/or.
     
  9. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    With Tesla it is either/or as no CCS adapter for US Tesla owners.
     
  10. HarryP

    HarryP New Member

    That's too bad. However, my understanding is that Tesla has more fast DC charging locations than all the other networks combined, at least in North America. So if it has to be one or the other, Tesla is the one to have access to.
     
  11. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    Not really. Electrify America will have 5000 to Tesla’s 7000. GM/EVgo have 800 and are building out 3000 more so as many as Tesla. I’ve checked them out using the Chademo. EA works as does EVgo. Better if Tesla gave US owners a CCS adaptor as they do in EU.
     
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  13. Kerbe

    Kerbe Active Member

    The first Aptera prototype came to light with what appeared to be several "second-life" Model 3 parts: The steering column (and stalks and wheel), the screen and the charge port being the most visible. During a tech briefing for "Brand Ambassadors" this week, Founder Chris Anthony spoke about the first three prototypes (the second is currently being assembled) as the "alpha group", to be followed by a beta run that will incorporate "as many actual production parts" as possible. I assume the gamma run will be "production intent", used for crash testing, etc., and the delta run will be the production ready units to send out on tour.

    Aptera does keep saying that they plan to use the CCS charging standard - but I wonder if that won't require enlarging the tail or moving the charging port to another part of the body as CCS connectors and ports aren't so svelte as their Tesla counterparts...

    The M3 steering wheel, btw, has been replaced in the first prototype by a square-ish wheel that has M3-style scroll-wheels.
     
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  14. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    There's really not that much difference in the CCS and Tesla plugs, the Chademo though is big.
     
  15. Kerbe

    Kerbe Active Member

    J1772 & Tesla - approx. 53x53mm
    CCS - approx. 75x103mm
    ChaDeMo - approx. 77x77mm

    So, yeah, the CCS port is significantly larger than the Tesla port because of the addition of two DC pins below a standard J1772 port. The J1772 port is round while Tesla port is slightly more oval or rectangular in shape. The CCS port is also larger than the ChaDeMo port.
     
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  16. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    If 1.97 inches is "significant" to you.
     
  17. Kerbe

    Kerbe Active Member

    Considering that it needs to fit vertically behind a US standard motorcycle license plate (4"x7" - 102mm x 178 mm) then, yes - an additional 1.97" is very significant as means trying to fit a 103mm port behind a 102mm cover. The size and weight and design of all current CCS connectors (plugs) requires them to be used vertically - with the J-1772 connector above the DC pin connector. A horizontal CCS port could fit behind a motorcycle plate but, in that orientation, the weight of the cable and connector would most likely pull the connector loose from the port.
     
  18. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    It doesn't and, even if it did, a CCS plug can fit behind a US standard license plate thought I'd hope they would not be so silly as to put it there unless on the front where all charge ports should be.
     
  19. Kerbe

    Kerbe Active Member

    aptera rear quarter.png
    The charge port on the Aptera is in the center of the rear of the vehicle, behind the MOTORCYCLE license plate: In the US Aptera is considered either an autocycle or a motorcycle, depending upon state law. The license plate is on a hinged mount and folds up to reveal the charge port.

    All CCS connectors stack a J-1772 jack over a 2-pin DC jack: Cables are mounted to exert downward force on the connector to keep the DC pins in contact. A CCS port can't be mounted "sideways" (with the two jacks next to each other) because the cable would pull the connector out of the port.
     
  20. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    Interesting as most of the complaints have been that cable pulls down and can cause the pin connectors to miss.

    Or make the area 2 mm bigger.

    The size of the CCS1 is not a real issue.

    I have a deposit on an Aptera and my feedback is I could not purchase it if it had a Tesla connector as it would not work where I needed it.

    As noted, Aptera says it will use the CCS1 standard vs. Tesla proprietary.
     
  21. Kerbe

    Kerbe Active Member

    When the prototype was first revealed and people commented on the Tesla charge port, the Founders stated that the like it because it was the "best design solution" and noted that, if they used it, they'd supply adapters. As there's currently no way for Tesla to use CCS in the US that would require some fancy footwork to accomplish.

    I already have a J-1772 EVSE in my garage - and there are no Tesla destination chargers anywhere that I'd be driving - so having to use a J-1772 to Tesla adapter would seem to be a particularly inelegant solution. I think that, unless they have some sort of deal with Tesla to use the Supercharger system in the works, Aptera will - most likely - be forced to use a CCS port.
     
  22. FISHEV

    FISHEV Member

    Tesla could provide a version of the $190 CCS adapter they sell in the EU but Tesla revenues from charging are too much to give up.
     
  23. Kerbe

    Kerbe Active Member

    Tesla Model 3 and Model Y built for the European market have CCS instead of the Tesla connector. Plus, the CCS standard in Europe is not the same as the one in North America so it's not just a case of slapping on an adapter - there are, as I understand it, some communication protocols that are incompatible.
     

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