Tesla appears to be moving forward on its plans for a diner and drive-in theater at a supercharger station. It sounds fun but might be a bit much.
Tesla has filed plans for a diner and drive-in theater at a supercharger station. One issue with charging electric vehicles is the amount of time it takes to charge them. It can take between 30 minutes and 12 hours, depending on the size of the battery and the speed of the charger. This is much more time-consuming than filling up a car with gas, which takes a few minutes. So, the EV company added Tesla Theater to vehicles with apps like Netflix. Users can pay $10 a month for Tesla’s LTE cellular connectivity to use this feature. It also started deploying Starlink antennas at supercharging stations last year. These are great ways to pass the time while waiting for an EV to charge. It looks like Tesla is planning another way for its customers to entertain themselves during charging.
This isn’t the first time plans have been revealed about a Tesla diner. In 2018, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced plans for an old-school drive-in that would feature roller skates and a rock and roll restaurant. It was planned at a new supercharger location in Los Angeles. People weren’t sure if Musk was joking, but he was serious. While Tesla applied for the permits, it never materialized because it was stalled due to regulations. So, the company moved forward with the charging station and not the drive-in. Last year, Musk announced again that he was still planning on creating a 1950s diner at the location.
Twitter user, MarcoRP, who provides updates about Tesla superchargers, provided plans for a diner and drive-in theater to be built at 7001 Santa Monica Boulevard. This is a different location than initially planned. From the blueprints, it looks like the restaurant will be two stories tall with seats inside and around the building. Tesla has requested that the diner is in operation 24 hours a day. There will also be two movie screens on the north and west side of the property. A feature will play for about 30 minutes — approximately the same time to charge the vehicle. Patrons will be able to view the screens from their cars or the rooftop seating from the restaurant.
Do Supercharger Stations Need This Much Fuss?
Do drivers need this much entertainment when charging a vehicle? Ordering a meal and eating it will take longer than their EV takes to charge. Sure, it could be a good rest for drivers on a long journey but not ideal for regular trips. If the movie screens only show 30-minute features, what will they play? Assuming it’s family-friendly, maybe Duck Tails or The Baby-Sitters Club. The driver and passengers may be better off using the Tesla Theater mentioned above to choose something they all want to watch or watch something on personal smartphones. Also, drive-in theaters are meant for feature films, not short comedies.
Tesla users should keep in mind that these plans haven’t been implemented yet. A Shakey’s Pizza Parlor is still in operation at the reported location. So once again, Musk’s dream may not come to fruition. However, if it does either at this location or another, it appears it has less to do with amenities at a Tesla Supercharger station and seems more likely a fun gimmick that Musk wants to happen. It also can give the company more revenue. It could be the start of rest stops for EVs. A to-go order window would be handy for customers who just want to charge and go. Musk may need to think about if this is to give his customers something to do while charging their cars or if he’s taking Tesla into the hospitality industry.
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