Tesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA) is slowly transforming itself from an automaker to an energy company.

Last month Elon Musk made an offer for Tesla to buy his other publicly traded company; solar electricity provider Solar City (NASDAQ: SCTY). Now comes word; via The Washington Post, that Tesla is in talks with Sheetz; a company that operates hundreds of convenience stores on America’s east coast.

Sheetz; which already operates eight charging stations for other electric cars, wants to add Tesla’s superchargers to some of its convenience stations. Sheetz is interested in adding superchargers because it wants to sell more drinks, snacks and cigarettes to drivers.

Tesla refused to acknowledge the Sheetz story, but admitted that it is actively looking for hotels, gas stations and restaurant operators, that want to add superchargers. Sheetz’ executive vice president Michael Lorentz confirmed the Tesla talks to The Post.

Tesla is Trying to Enter the Filling Station Business

Superchargers will be a hard sell to filling-station operators because it takes around 15 minutes to charge a Tesla S series with present technology. In contrast it only takes around three minutes to fill the gas tank of the average car. Most filling stations in the US are designed to get vehicles in and out fast, to sell a high volume of gas and snacks.

supercharger

A more logical fit for superchargers would be fast-food outlets like McDonald’s or large supermarket operators like Kroger (NYSE: KR). Kroger would love electric drivers to come in and shop for 15 minutes, McDonald’s would sell them hamburgers. Kroger currently operates 1,387 supermarket fuel centers and 784 convenience stores in the United States.

Other major retailers that might join up with Tesla include Safeway, Walmart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) and Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ: COST), all of which operate filling stations. One major retailer in the Midwest, Meijer; is installing superchargers.

A major complaint about the superchargers is that there is little or nothing for drivers to do at them while their cars are recharging. Shopping or restaurants would give drivers something to do at the filling station.

Filling station operators are interested in adding chargers because demand for gas is falling in the US. The Fuel Institute estimates that US gas and diesel consumption will fall by 20% by 2035, meaning they will need another source of revenue. Part of the reason for that could be the rise of electrics, Bloomberg estimates that one in three cars on the American road will be electric by 2040. Meaning filling stations will have to service them in order to survive.

One has to wonder if Tesla filling stations will become a fixture of the American highway of the future. Much as Shell, Exxon, and Conoco are today.

https://i1.wp.com/geekcrunch.reviews/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Tesla-Supercharger.jpg?fit=1024%2C640&ssl=1https://i1.wp.com/geekcrunch.reviews/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Tesla-Supercharger.jpg?resize=150%2C150&ssl=1Daniel JenningsInvestmentseight charging stations for other electric cars,Elon Musk,Filling station operators,Sheetz,Solar City,Superchargers,Tesla is Trying to Enter the Filling Station Business,Tesla Motors’ (NASDAQ: TSLA),Tesla’s superchargersTesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA) is slowly transforming itself from an automaker to an energy company. Last month Elon Musk made an offer for Tesla to buy his other publicly traded company; solar electricity provider Solar City (NASDAQ: SCTY). Now comes word; via The Washington Post, that Tesla is in talks...From A Geek to a Geek