Cheeky Tesla Driver prompts Newton Nissan to padlock their DC Quick Charge Unit

Padlock on Rapid Charge unit at Newton Nissan

Padlock on Rapid Charge unit at Newton Nissan

Update: 2015-05-23. DC Fast Charger no longer padlocked.

I visited Newton Nissan for a quick charge and was glad the parking space was open on a busy Saturday afternoon. I was greeted however with a padlock on the quick charge unit.

I enquired inside the service department and they unlocked the quick charge unit for me to use. The padlock is a new addition due to the fact a Tesla driver recently charged his vehicle without asking. They asked him to leave which he did, but found him using the quick charge unit again 2 hours later. Cheeky cheeky cheeky!! The EV charging wars have begun!

It’s a shame a driver had to overstep the mark. Now all drivers maybe inconvenienced, especially out of hours.

I checked on Plugshare and the Tesla Driver is someone called Chris. Ironically he thanked Newton for the rapid charge and being open out of hours. There maybe two sides to this story….

I suggested to several of the dealership staff they should not look upon this as a problem, but an opportunity. I suggested if a Tesla driver wants to charge his vehicle, let him do so, so long as he/she agrees to the test drive of a vehicle while they wait for their car to charge. Maybe his wife or kids might like to buy a Nissan LEAF or another Nissan vehicle. If they decline the test drive, decline the rapid charge. Shutting out owners of competitive EV’s may not be the best approach. Tesla owners have money, they may be willing to buy from Nissan as well, running them off will guarantee no sale now or in the future. By padlocking the unit Newton Nissan have won the battle against the cheeky Tesla driver, but they may lose the war on sales if they don’t choose to negotiate rather than stonewall.

If you expect to need to charge your LEAF out of hours, call by the dealership in advance and get the combination from them.

Tesla Charging at Newton Nissan

Tesla Charging at Newton Nissan

Update: 2015-05-14

Within a few days of the padlock being installed, a Nissan LEAF owner called Lindsay has already been inconvenienced by the presence of the padlock out of regular hours (see Plugshare comments in image below). I have exchanged messages with Lindsay in the past on Plugshare and she is a long time LEAF owner and utilizes the public charging stations frequently. It’s too bad that the padlock intended to prevent ‘unauthorized’ access actually inconveniences genuine Nissan customers. I believe they should rethink this policy.

Lindsay leaves comment on Plugshare regarding padlock

Lindsay leaves comment on Plugshare regarding padlock

If you read the blog comments at the end of this article you will also discover that Chris the Tesla driver says he did ask ahead of time if it would be OK to use the DC Fast Charging station. More and more it looks like Newton Nissan have handled this issue poorly and in a heavy handed manner.

This entry was posted in CHAdeMO, Level 3 EV Charger, Nissan LEAF and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Cheeky Tesla Driver prompts Newton Nissan to padlock their DC Quick Charge Unit

  1. Hank Gagnon says:

    Those charge stations should have a Credit/Debit system attached, charging a reasonable fee to charge your vehicle. As long as it is reasonable I see this as an opportunity for the Nissan Dealership to get some ROI on the charging station and provide another service for a very potential customer base.

  2. Chris (the cheeky) says:

    This story is a flat out lie. I am the Chris that posted that picture in Plugshare. 100% of my charging was done Sunday 4/26 when the dealership was closed. There were NO employees there to ask me to leave. I even called ahead weeks prior and spoke to Mike in the service department. I had one charging session on my way north to KY and one later that same day on my way back south. Either the author or the Newton employee’s story is bullshit.

    • Chris (the cheeky) says:

      My second Plugshare checking was done after midnight that Sunday. That’s why it shows it a day later. If there was another Tesla owner that caused this, blame them and not me.

    • jpwhitehome says:

      Thanks for providing your side of the story. As I said there maybe another side to this story and it seems that is truly the case.

      • Tom Grose says:

        I have encountered some of the dealer restrictions on charging in KY also. In Bowling Green, which is in short supply of public EVSE, the Ford dealer where I have charged now has a sign on the EVSE “Ford vehicles only please”. I called the dealership & they were very nice. The sign is a result of a rude Fisker owner who was repeatedly hogging the EVSE spot for days at a time. This is probably old news in CA but now down South it seem like we need some better manners too.

  3. Rocky Hinten says:

    @jpwhitehome, Then it is probably worth adding an inline edit, rather than being just down here in the comment section.

  4. Chris (doesn't own a Tesla) says:

    So for a few cents in electricity the dealer locks the charger? Perhaps the headline should be Nissan dealer doesn’t get electric car market. Charging a test drive for a charge is way too steep a price as well. Remember the competition is superchargers which are free for life – Tesla owners are used to a company that understands electric car economics.

    • jpwhitehome says:

      Yes I do believe they are cutting their noses off to spite their face. That does happen when one gets territorial, shame they had to go to darkside. There are reports of some Nissan dealers denying access to any of their charging stations for other LEAF drivers who bought at another dealer. While other Nissan dealers are cool all round. The dealer experience varies dealer to dealer along with their understanding and maturity level towards EV’s in general.

      Tesla do have the most accurate vision of how things will/should pan out. This maybe a prime example why Musk is avoiding marketing his vehicles via dealers and selling direct only.

      FYI one comment I forgot to mention in my article is the the Newton service staff did say the 240v Level 2 charger out front is open for use by anyone, anytime. Its the rapid charger they are getting worked up over.

  5. Jay says:

    I also got two-faced treatment from a Nissan dealer about fast-charging my i-MiEV (smiles from a salesman followed by his two goons in an Armada to run me off) so I then took the opportunity to get acquainted with the franchise owner and got him to put that fast charger on ChargePoint at a reasonable price ($10/hr). Now the only issue is occasional line-ups.

  6. Pingback: Tesla Supercharger Stalls Increased 71% In 2015

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