Tesla Motors has shown off its new battery pack-swapping technology for the Model S electric sedan. At an event at the company's design studio in Hawthorne, California, founder Elon Musk explained that the whole process will take around 90 seconds with the driver staying in their car the whole time.
"We designed Model S from the beginning to be capable of swapping out the battery pack faster than you can fill a gas tank" -@elonmusk— Tesla Motors (@TeslaMotors) June 21, 2013
The swapping technique came out on top against what Musk described as "the fastest gas pump in LA." Drivers can either return the fresh battery pack upon their journey past the service station, or keep it. Tesla will bill later for the difference in value, and Musk says that the service will cost about the same as a tank of gas.
The pack-swapping service will eventually come to every supercharger station, but the first pack-swapping tech will be installed on busy corridors such as the I-5 in California; each station will cost roughly $500,000 to build.