Newsletter – 2018, Number 1

Hi All Teslans,

Welcome to our first newsletter for 2018, and a special welcome to our new members, we hope you had a wonderful summer season and we look forward to a great year ahead.

Here is an update of our recent news:


Tesla Owners Club Western Australia (TOCWA) is now official, Tesla motors USA accepted our application and Australia now holds the distinction of being the only country outside of the USA to have an official regional based club. Although TOCWA are completely independent of Tesla owners club Australia (TOCA) both clubs are keen to work together when required, a big thank you to Annie Atkins for putting in the hard work and communicating with Tesla and presenting our case.


TOCWA now has over 40 members and is keen to recruit more; membership is $50 per year and brings a host of benefits including access to charging cables, member’s discounts on Tesla official merchandise and discounts on TOCWA sponsors products.

Charging facilities

Basic AC charging options are popping up everywhere across both the metro area and regional areas, there are now over 44 locations with Tesla destination chargers and many more locations with 3 phase outlets dedicated to EV charging, AC charging is not the perfect long term solution but it’s low cost to install and gets the discussion started on future possibilities, as time goes on and the EV population increases faster DC charging will become the norm. Don’t forget to make full use of plugshare before and during charging.

Becoming an Outback EV warrior

Once you’ve become accustomed to the driving and charging an EV around the metro area you may like to try something more adventurous, the prerequisites are planning, patience and a spare tyre (you can borrow a spare wheel/tyre combo from McCarthy’s prestige in Claremont), start with the relative safety of the South west where there are a plentiful supply of charging options, a trip to Albany via Bridgetown is a good starter, after gaining experience with energy use on country roads, charging speeds and other factors you can then try trips to Esperance, Kalgoorlie or Geraldton. The 3 most important tips I could give you when country driving is study plugshare religiously, always have a charging plan B and drive at a speed that gives full respect to the unpredictable wildlife.

Upcoming events

TOCWA have a few events in the planning including a drive day to York on the 8th of April. Please mark this date in your calendar.

There are also a number of AEVA organised car events that are a great opportunity to pick up some tips and tricks from long term EV fanatics.

Useful resources

TOCWA has a slack channel that is handy for asking quick questions and catching up on news, we also have a twitter account @tesla_wa, a website- and a facebook group- Tesla Owners Club WA, if you are keen to keep up with the ever changing world of electric vehicles, battery storage, renewable energy and sustainability I recommend an Australian site and a California based site


Happy motoring


Rob Dean

TOCWA Chair.

Inaugural TOCWA Newsletter Feb 2018

TOCWA completes affiliation with Tesla

Tesla Owners Club of Western Australia has completed its affiliation with Tesla.

We’re now officially part of the Tesla family through Tesla’s club programme.

As such, we now have a direct line for members interests into Tesla, and a role in coordinating events here in WA.

Christmas Meetup

There will be a very casual Christmas gathering on Monday the 18th, 6.00pm at the Left bank in Fremantle – the upstairs area has been booked.

All Tesla owners, future owners and EV enthusiasts welcome, come along and hear about the two latest Nullarbor trips, regional charging updates and anything else topical.

Model 75D “Uncorking”

If you have a recent 75D model S or X that was built before July 2017, you can get it “uncorked” to the same performance as the post July 2017 ones now – it depends on components and age, but well worth checking.

For the model S 75D the 0-100 time is 4.4 seconds down from 5.5 seconds, and for the model X 75D, 5.2 seconds down from 6.5 seconds.

One owner had theirs done today, and has noticed a significant improvement in performance.

This is one of the really unique things about Tesla – how many other cars have you owned where months after the original purchase, you get a free power upgrade?


WA Pioneers

In 2014 Tesla advised that they would ship the first cars to Australia – there would be no servicing support or charging in WA – despite this, eight said yes.

They were transhipped from Sydney in December 2014 after the Sydney Grand Opening and arrived here in February 2015.

Original owners received a single phase 40amp wall charger, and were delighted to discover the UWA REV chargers (30amp single phase) around Perth. The Tesla mobile charger was not available at delivery, so we could not escape the metro area.  UWA imported a Percedos 16amp single phase charger for us from Germany, but when it arrived it was restricted to 13amps so as not to exceed the capacity of the 15amp caravan park sockets. It did, however, enable us to break out of Perth.


Some early long drives in WA include:

David & Lindsay to Kalbarri and return – S85 – July 2015 – 1200km in 4 nights

20 hours charge in Dongara, 40 hours plugged into Kalbarri laundry and 20 hours Jurien Bay through a motel window – only 10/13 amps via the Percedos.

Nullarbor Steve drove his new P85D back from Melbourne – November 2015- 3880 km in 9nights

No 3phase, 540kms on one charge Nullarbor roadhouse to Caiguna, 536kms on one charge Caiguna to Coolgardie.

Then 3 Phase pigtails with the red Euro connector for the Tesla UMC and other external EVSEs became available,  we started supplying 3 phase sockets to fill the gaps, and planning 3phase trips.

Matt & David drove Mat’s P85+ across the Nullarbor to Adelaide – May 2016 – 2850km in 5 nights

All 3phase (arranged by sending AEVA 3phase sockets in advance), except 15amps overnight at Caiguna.

Matt K – Adelaide to Brisbane and return to Perth – P85+ – June 2016 – 10000km

Tesla Superchargers from Melbourne to Brisbane (via Sydney) and 3phase, External EVSE, 10m 32amp 3phase extension cable and 32A and 20A pigtails. Dual on board chargers.

Richard McNeal Round Oz, Sydney to Sydney return via WA – August/September 2016 – 16000km

Some 3 phase, but 4 EVSEs failed. Balanced dual 15amp octopus charger, 17kw on board charger. Max of 700kms in one day.

Rob & Robin to Broome and return – P85D – July 2016 – 5400km in 13 nights

Mixture of 3phase and single phase.

Cable Beach, Broome

David, Vernon, Lindsay to Broome and return – S85 – October 2016 – 5000 km 3 nights each way

All 3phase (arranged by sending AEVA 3phase sockets and installing Tesla wall connectors in advance). Single 11kw on board charger. Max of 720kms in one day.

Rob & Robin to Shark Bay and return – P85D – November 2016 – 1900km in 3nights

All 3phase.

Shark Bay

Nullarbor Steve to Launceston return – P85D – March 2017 – 7650 kms in 11 nights

3 phase most of the way. Single 11kw on board charger. Max of 1012kms in one day.

Rob & Robin to Esperance, Kalgoorlie and Kalbarri – P85D – April 2017 – 8 nights

Mixture of 10 amp and 3phase.

David, Lindsay to Esperance, back via Hyden – S85 – April 2017 – 2400km in 5 nights

All 3phase (arranged by sending AEVA 3phase sockets and installing Tesla wall connectors in advance).


The AESY group (AEVA sponsored by Synergy) are trying to cover all the main roads in WA in a 100kms grid of 3-phase sockets. If you any ideas for locations please contact the AESY member below:

Richard Chapman              Pilbara

Rob Dean                                 Goldfields

David Lloyd                            Kimberley and Nullarbor and Coral coast

Jon Edwards                          South West

Christopher Jones              Great Southern and Wheatbelt east of Perth

Glenn Elliot                            Wheatbelt north of Perth



Loan Charging Stock

TOCWA’s loan cable stock is now available for members to borrow.

We have:

3-phase tails for use with your Tesla-supplied mobile charger,

ChaDeMo adapter for use at the UWA fast charger and the RAC Electric Highway chargers,

Type1 adapter for use at chargers such as at the convention centre, Leederville and Garden City,

Type2-Type2 cable for use at chargers such as Home Base Subiaco.

We will also soon have available to members, discounted cables for purchase.  If you are interested, or would like to borrow a cable, please get in touch.

Interview with ABC Kimberley

In September, TOCWA Secretary, David Lloyd was interviewed by Stephanie Coombes of ABC Kimberley about electric vehicles and WA’s remote North-west:

STEPHANIE: I suggest it is pretty unlikely that you would imagine riding around the red dust in an electric car but here’s the thing there is a big push under way at the moment to make the Kimberley electric car ready. That means getting charging points every hundred kms or so. The Kimberley is one of the last frontiers for electric cars, but believe it or not even now it’s possible to drive from Broome to Kununurra in an electric car. David Lloyd is an electric car enthusiast, and that’s to save the least. He’s the secretary of the Tesla Owners Club Western Australia and a member of AEVA. Good morning David.

DAVID: Good morning Stephanie How are you.

STEPHANIE: I’m not too bad. First of all you’ve driven from Perth to Broome in an electric car. What was that like.

DAVID: Ah it was so much fun – that was in the early days before we had 3-phase installed everywhere. This makes the charging 3 times as fast. We had to try to cover the gaps, working out the wind and elevations.

We had to charge at 80 mile beach in a welding shed there and then drive the 380 kms to Broome which was near the limit of the range of the car at that time. That was fine but we had a big easterly which effects the range, so we had to turn the AC off and arrive dripping into Broome. That was a great adventure. It is all different now since Eco Beach are installing 3-phase and the car’s range is now 500kms.

STEPHANIE: So even then even before there was a big movement to get electric cars it was possible. It is just that it took someone like you who is a little bit fanatical perhaps about electric cars to make it happen.

DAVID: Yes. We did that run in October 2016. A couple of people had done it before without any 3-phase which is even more remarkable.

But we had arranged to have 3-phase installed on the way. Cable Beach Club put in a Tesla destination charger for us. It was lovely to arrive to that – it was a welcoming sight to see the Tesla sign. But since then FreshWater Resort  Kununurra, Timber Creek Hotel, Ranges resort Karratha, Seaview Appts Carnarvon have or are installing destination chargers. So all the main centres from Perth to Broome and beyond have Tesla destination chargers.

STEPHANIE: It’s quite incredible to think that things have changed so quickly already since October 2016 I mean that just over a year ago.

DAVID: Yes, Tesla have done a big push here at our request, but also AEVA (Australian Electric Vehicle Association). We have partnered with Synergy to distribute ordinary commercial 3-phase sockets, as you see in welding sheds. Now all cars can use these, all EVs can charge from them, they give 22kw of power which is about 100kms of range per hour. They are perfectly viable but just don’t look as pretty.

STEPHANIE: Now tell me a little bit about this new push to get the Kimberley completely electric car suitable.

DAVID: So, AEVA has decided to reduce the gaps from 300kms which is suitable for the older Teslas (now 500 kms for new Teslas). We want to reduce that down to a 100kms grid over all main roads in WA, and to do that we have got to talk to all the roadhouses, hotels, restaurants everywhere on the road. In some cases unfortunately there is not even a kettle every hundred kms so we cannot do 100kms in Kimberley but we can get it down to 150kms. Larrawa Station has just joined up for instance. We are talking to all the stations, so they can get in on the act. Once the 3phase sockets are installed, then the route will be very easy for a number of cars because there will be choices of where to charge. You won’t have to charge at every point and can skip them and go onto the next one.

STEPHANIE: How much would it cost if you are station owner. For example would you give a certain amount of money and expenses to charge up an electric car.

DAVID: Well we offer to pay for electricity certainly and if generated locally it is more expensive. So the owner of the facility would charge the EV owner for the electricity. Even generated electricity is cheaper than buying petrol -we get more range out of the electricity per $ than petrol cars. We can supply the sockets free to any location in the Kimberley that wants to have one and fits into our grid, let us know. We will post one out to you. All you have to do is install it.

Then you can get customers staying at your premises, buying your meals or staying overnight with you.

And you can charge for electricity as you wish- it is up the location.

STEPHANIE: And here’s the thing you guys are going to be captive while you’re charging your car. Not as quick as filling a tank of petrol. So you do have a bit of a captive audience.

DAVID: That’s right we are even targeting service stations since they can make more money selling electricity than petrol. The margins are higher. We will hang around a bit more. We will go shopping, go to the stores, patronise the local businesses as well, and go to the local tourist sites in the area of course.

For a day charge EVs will spend longer.

In practice however with a 500kms range, mostly we will only need to charge at night and this takes just 20 seconds to plug in and leave the car and thats it.  But we will be staying with a local service provider obviously and buying meals locally. It’s good for tourism.

STEPHANIE: Now you obviously as I said earlier been driving around in an electric car before people thought that it was possible even. Are you going to miss these adventuring days where electric cars and charging stations are not that common place.

DAVID: Yes definitely definitely it has been a wonderful experience being one of the pioneers. It is so much fun planning the routes, working out the distance to go and time to go. Sometimes you turn up to a socket and there is no power. It has been great fun.

It’s going to become commonplace. The market is going to be flooded with EVs. The Tesla model 3 is only US$35,000 so it will change the market totally. There will be 100s of thousands of them coming.

The pioneering days are over unfortunately.

STEPHANIE: David thanks so much for your time, OK.

DAVID: It has been a pleasure, Stephanie.

STEPHANIE: That was David Lloyd – he is an electric car enthusiast definitely loves his electric car.


It would be great to prove Stephanie wrong and show her the cars in Broome at the ABC office soon!