Dongle life on the road
If you're familiar with #donglelife, you won't be surprised that it has made its way to EVs. The Lectron Tesla to J1772 Charging Adapter is essentially a dongle. On one end you can plug a Tesla connector so that you can plug into an EV with a J1772 charging port on the other end. It's a simple, yet essential adapter that you'll want to keep in your car at all times because you never know when you might need it.
Taking advantage of the Tesla infrastructure
While Tesla SuperChargers are the most familiar part of EV charging infrastructure in the US, this adapter will not work on those. If you want to charge you're non-Tesla at a SuperCharger, you'll have to wait for Tesla to retrofit them with the Magic Dock. But there's another important part of the EV public charging infrastructure: Tesla destination chargers.
These chargers are commonly found at destinations (duh). More and more hotels, restaurants, parking garages, and shopping centers are installing Tesla destination chargers and with this adapter, you too can take advantage of them.
This means if you're traveling but the hotel only has a Tesla destination charger, you can still charge it with this adapter, which opens up the options if you're considering taking longer trips in a non-Tesla EV.
There are alternatives to the Lectron, but keep an eye on the brand and the amps
I'm sharing the Lectron because that's the one I bought—a few reasons for that.
Lectron is a reputable brand and makes other high-quality chargers. If it's good enough for Tom at State of Charge, I'm confident the product is good.
Second, Lectron makes a 48A adapter. They also make a 40-amp version, but the best practice is to future-proof yourself and get the higher amperage version, even if your existing EV isn't capable of charging. Just because your existing EV doesn't charge at the max amps doesn't mean your next one won't. And like regular dongles, it's a pain to have to buy a new one each time you get a new product, especially when they're expensive like this one.
When would I use this?
The main reason I got this was in the event that I needed it. Luckily, I have been able to install home chargers that satisfy 99% of my charging needs. But, in the event of a road trip in our ID.4, this will be nice to have since it opens up a lot of hotel options if we happen to stay at a hotel that only has Tesla destination chargers. I also already have a Tesla mobile connector, which means I don't have to buy a separate portable charger.
Some cases where this might also make sense:
- You road trip often and want to have an adapter in case Tesla charging is the only option
- You are/were a Tesla owner and already have a mobile connector and/or a Tesla wall connector
Overall I've been extremely happy with this adapter. It served me well on the first few charges at home while I installed my J1772 Tesla Wall Connector and now it stays in the ID.4 for when it's needed. And with today's non-Tesla charging infrastructure, it's better to be safe than sorry!