Monday, December 11, 2023

Tesla’s Drive-In Supercharger and Hummer’s EarthCruiser Up the Ante on EVs


EVs are going big.

After years of teasing the possibility, Tesla’s innovative vision for combining electric vehicle charging with entertainment has reached a significant milestone as the company received the necessary permit approvals for its Diner and Drive-In Movie Supercharger. The project will be situated in Los Angeles at 7001 W. Santa Monica Boulevard in East Hollywood, moving east from its original planned location in Santa Monica.

Documents obtained from the LA Department of Building and Safety reveal that Tesla’s proposal for a Supercharger site featuring 32 stalls, two movie screens, and a restaurant with rooftop seating is on its way to becoming reality.

The approval process has seen its share of hurdles. Starting last November, Tesla began filing applications to build at the Diner/Supercharger site. As it moved through regulatory channels, the company received several approvals and requests for corrections. Finally, on July 18, after an eight-month review, the permit was issued by the City of Los Angeles. Earlier this month, it received the green light on its initial grading inspection, paving the way for grading the area, building walls, and erecting movie screens on the lot.

Tesla's Supercharger Diner and Drive-In model
Tesla’s Supercharger Diner and Drive-In model | Courtesy

Key participants in the project include Stantec Architecture, based in Chandler, Arizona, as the project’s architect, and PCL Construction Services Inc., based in Glendale, California, as the contractor.

Tesla’s Supercharger Network stands as the most extensive among all automakers globally. While charging times decrease and entertainment needs lessen, the desire for unique experiences at charging locations persists. The Diner and Drive-In Supercharger promises to add a fresh and engaging dimension to the company’s charging network, perhaps becoming its most attractive stop for those needing a charge.

The news comes as overland adventure travel and camping specialist company EarthCruiser has unveiled the GMC Hummer EV EarthCruiser — a fully electric groundbreaking overland upfit solution.

The EarthCruiser upfit is fully integrated onto the GMC Hummer EV Pickup chassis, blending state-of-the-art technology, innovation, and comfort for exploration both on and off the road. This innovation made its public debut at the Overland Expo Mountain West in Loveland, Colorado from August 25-27.

“We are proud to work with GMC on the design and manufacturing of such an exceptional product,” Lance Gillies, EarthCruiser CEO and Founder, said in a statement. “It feels right, it feels like it belongs.”

The Hummer EarthCruiser upfit
The Hummer EarthCruiser is ready for your next camping adventure | Courtesy GMC

Gillies says EarthCruiser’s years of overlanding expertise, have ensured “nothing is out of place, unnecessary or wasted in this vehicle.”

“This collaboration with the GMC team has provided the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the zero-tailpipe emission possibilities for overland and recreational vehicle travelers,” he said. “We have produced a comfortable, capable product, built to a high caliber of excellence — one that our customers can take pride in.”

Features include the integration of a carbon fiber EarthCruiser house into the GMC Hummer EV Pickup chassis; a robust solar power system providing 605W, partnered with an innovative 6-kilowatt hour 12V lithium battery, enabling an estimated week of off-grid power; and EarthCruiser’s insulated tri-layer pop-up roof, suitable for exploration in any season. The well-designed interior prioritizes versatility and storage optimization and amenities include a curated selection of appliances, indoor and outdoor shower facilities, multiple power outlets, thoughtful storage solutions, a flat-pack toilet, and an RV full-size bed.

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