When it opened in 2014, Tesla’s supercharger station on the A2 in Hohenwarsleben near Magdeburg was one of the first in Germany and probably more than adequately dimensioned. Because back then there were so few Teslas in the country that they did not even appear in the KBA statistics. But today we shudder every time Hohenwarsleben is displayed as the next charging stop in the navigation system. Because the old Tesla location is regularly overcrowded, often out of order and even then only delivers a moderate amount of power when there is less going on. Perhaps that’s why it was sometimes no longer displayed in our navigation in the past few weeks. And now there is finally improvement in sight.
Tesla hides its own supercharger
Located on the important route between the Ruhrpott and Berlin, Hohenwarsleben has so far been an almost mandatory stop for many Tesla drivers on the journey to the east or back. There are still no other superchargers on the 272 kilometers between Lauenau west of Hanover and Beelitz just before Berlin. This can be described as undersupply, because today, as in the past, the A2 is one of the most heavily used motorways, hundreds of kilometers long, important for the connection from east to west, in GDR times the most important transit route into divided Berlin and the scene of many east-west Border crime novels.
The Tesla location on this autobahn could be added to this story – or better left it, because Hohenwahrsleben is simply one thing: terrible, for us the worst supercharger in Germany. For real. It is almost always full because it only has six charging points, which means that it is usually throttled – even if you have a pair of columns to yourself. In the past few weeks it has even happened several times on our own east-west trips that it was not displayed in our Model 3 in the overview of the Supercharger locations. When we went to look it was still there, mostly in operation (the photo above was taken on such an occasion).
In Hohenwarsleben there is often electric car rush hour, also because Ionity and Allego offer charging points nearby. That can be entertaining, because electric car novices often try to charge their Audi e-trons, VW ID.3 or Polestar 2 there. With Ionity it works most of the time, with Allego it almost never works the first time. You could see this show as a plus point for Hohenwahrsleben – but it’s not because you are in the queue yourself. After all, six Dutch Model 3s are currently charging to 95 percent and two more are already pending. To correct this: The Dutch are always extremely funny and ready to talk, which often makes waiting more bearable. But you just have to wait.
Will Hohenwarsleben be given up completely?
Hohenwarsleben has not yet been able to benefit from Tesla’s activities in upgrading existing supercharger stations. While new V3 pillars supplement the existing infrastructure at many locations in Germany, the latter stubbornly stuck to its six overburdened charging points of the old generation. But Tesla seems to have recognized the plight of the electric car drivers: In the map of the existing and planned Supercharger locations worldwide, which was updated at the beginning of the year, a new location in Irxleben is (roughly) indicated, in the immediate vicinity of the previous one.
It is scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2021. We assume that the new location will have more than six charging points and will be available more reliably. Then it’s goodbye Hohenwarsleben. And the fact that the old location is sometimes not visible in the Tesla overview could mean that it disappears completely – which would be a shame, but only for nostalgic reasons.