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EV 101: Can the Nissan Leaf use a Tesla Supercharger charging station?

Maybe you’re thinking about getting a new Nissan Leaf. There are some great deals to be had out there. But you’re probably wondering where you’re going to be able to plug in and charge out on the road.

You’ve probably noticed Tesla’s Superchargers everywhere. Surely you should be able to plug your electric car into any electric car charger, right?

Can the Nissan Leaf use a Tesla Supercharger?

No.

Teslas use a proprietary charging connector that can only work on Tesla vehicles. For level 2 home charging, the company ships an adapter to plug into other chargers. But for fast charging, DC fast charging, or DCFC, only Tesla vehicles can use a Tesla Supercharger.

Tesla handles all of the power delivery, control, and payment through the infotainment system in the car. Unless Tesla opens up their network and associated protocols to other automakers, there’s no way to share.

How do I fast charge my Nissan Leaf?

Your Nissan Leaf, as of November of 2020, uses a fast charging connector called CHAdeMO. This means you need to find an electric vehicle charging station that supports CHAdeMO charging.

EVGo, Electrify America, ChargePoint and others support this standard. The best way to see where your closest charging station is located is to install the PlugShare (iOS / Android) app and register an account. When you tell it you have a Nissan Leaf, it will show you charging stations that support CHAdeMO.

Some of these charging stations will be free to use, but most will require a payment. Instructions on how to use the station should be available on the station when you arrive to it.

If you know beforehand that the station is one particular brand, you can install the app of the company that administers the charging station so see if the station is online and make payment through the app.

While the Nissan Leaf supports up to 100 kW fast charging, most CHAdeMO stations limit power to 50 kW. Your charge times may vary.

Written by Chad Kirchner
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