10,400 km Tesla Cross Country Road Trip 2016

10,400 km Tesla Cross Country Road Trip 2016

Sooke, BC, Canada to Williamsburg, Virginia

Lisa Locke, VEVC Editor, May 19, 2016

Left: Home in Sooke, BC near the Pacific Ocean, Middle: Canadian supercharger near London, ON. Right: US Supercharger near Detroit, MI.

These past two weeks my family and I drove our all-electric Tesla Model S from Victoria, BC, Canada to Williamsburg, Virginia to attend the Tesla Road Trip 2016 (@TeslaRoadTrip) event. The 10,400 km trip included 11 days of travel and 3 days at the event in Virginia. On average 10 hours of driving and 2 hours of charging per day — see the graphs at the end of this article — about 1,000 km per day.

More than 80 Teslas including 5 Roadsters and 7 new Model X’s met at the Kingsmill Resort near the James River for a 3-day meet. It was a chance to meet other owners, share stories, successes and solutions.

The Planning Process

Planned route and superchargers for our trip from Victoria, BC, Canada to Williamsburg, Virginia, USA.

We planned out the full trip through the Tesla supercharging network using EV Trip Planner ( This website was written to take into account all the details of the car (currently Model S, some LEAFs and Tesla Roadster), outside temperature, extra weight, and displays the estimated driving time and charging time. And it was accurate to within 30 minutes on a 13 hour driving and charging day!

Using complements the model S’s Supercharging Planner on the 17″ GPS. very accurately plans the required driving and charging times, and allows for different models, outside temperatures, weight, a speed multiplier.
Driving across 14 states!

The Event – Parade of Cars

On Sunday, we all drove our cars into a parking lot and arranged them as follows.  This is a tribute to the  S, 3, X and soon model Y, and also a nod to the CTO of Tesla, JB Straubel.

After the coordinated drive, we arranged our cars to spell S3XY JB. The four models of Tesla cars and the initials of Tesla’s CTO, JB Straubel.  Our car is at the bottom left of the “S.”
Teslas at the event. Left top and bottom: a Green Roadster with “4GO GAS” license plate. Right top: lineup of parked Teslas after the “S3XY JB” drone shot. Right bottom: All the Roadsters on display.

Using Tesla Support

During the trip we had one issue that required contacting Tesla support, this related to the air conditioning system not pushing enough air when the outside temperature rose above 28 degrees on one afternoon. Tesla was quick to respond to our call and we applied a quick work around and the air quickly returned to a very comfortable temperature. Tesla service passed our workaround details to their engineers to research the issue. We were very happy with Tesla’s response to this problem.

No Waits at Superchargers

During the entire trip across the US with 34 superchargers, there were no waits at any superchargers. In fact close to all superchargers had no other cars, if anyone was there, it was only 1 or 2 leaving many stalls available for charging since there on average 6 charging stalls at each supercharger. We experienced no range anxiety as chargers are spaced at most 2 hours drive time apart, charging times averaged 20-25 minutes.

Charging all by herself.

Complete 2-way Trip Statistics: • 10,400 km • 11 days of driving • 68 Superchargers • Saved 350 gallons of gasoline => Avoided 2,590 kg of CO2 emissions.

Top left: tunnel. Bottom left: Atlantic Ocean at Nag’s Head, NC. Right: Monument at Wright Brother’s Memorial at Kill Devil Hills, NC

Battery & Charging Graphs

The battery level and times at each supercharger are graphed below, for each of the 5 days of the trip to Virginia.  Click on days 2-5 to see the full size image.

Day 1: The superchargers visited are noted on the graph, with the time of arrival and departure. Dotted blue: the % battery level. Red: the total driving time. Green: the total charging time.

Day 2
Day 2: Missoula, MT to Rapid City, SD
Day 3
Day 3: Rapid City, SD to Mauston, WI
Day 4
Day 4: Mauston, WI to Comber, ON, Canada
Day 5
Day 5: London, ON to Strasberg, VA







Driving an electric vehicle, especially one that has auto-pilot certainly makes for an enjoyable and relaxed trip, even at this pace!  It’s a pleasure to drive the Tesla Model S, she’s a sporty, powerful smokin’ hot car.