Volvo EX30
Source: Volvo

SAE International, a US-based engineering standards organization, is fast-tracking standardization of Tesla's NACS electric vehicle charging connector as more and more American car makers prepare to make the switch. The move is meant to ensure compatibility across manufacturers so that any auto equipped with the NACS port will work with any charger with an NACS plug. For over a decade the Tesla-designed plug was proprietary to Tesla vehicles, and while they made it available for public use in November 2022 as the North American Charging Standard, only recently have moves been made to adopt it across American manufacturers.

Said SAE:

The standardization process is the next step to establish a consensus-based approach for maintaining NACS and validating its ability to meet performance and interoperability criteria. The Joint Office of Energy and Transportation was instrumental in fostering the SAE-Tesla partnership and expediting plans to standardize NACS—an important step in building an interoperable national charging network that will work for all EV drivers.

It's not expected that SAE will make any significant changes to the NACS design, as it needs to maintain compatibility with Tesla's existing sprawling Supercharger network for adoption to be worthwhile. Tesla's documentation is already comprehensive and the longevity, reliability, and ease-of-use of the Tesla connector has been proven for years. SAE partnered with the European Automobile Manufacturers Association to create the CCS charging standard in the first place, so their choice to not only adopt Tesla's NACS but expedite the process speaks volumes about the direction the industry is taken.

And while the US Government remains adamant that federally-funded DC fast charging stations must include at least a CCS1 port, they're also acknowledging the shifting tides and encouraging the additional inclusion of NACS ports. Some US states (which are in charge of the actual distribution of these funds) have gone as far as to mandate the additional inclusion of NACS, such as Texas and Washington.

Meanwhile, Volvo USA announced plans to add the NACS connector to their cars starting in 2025 (the same timeframe as GM, Ford, and Rivian) and will offer an adapter for CCS1-equipped Volvo cars to use NACS-equipped Tesla Superchargers. Volvo's all-electric Polestar subsidiary hasn't yet committed to NACS for their cars destined for North America, but given the shared components between the two brands it wouldn't surprise me if they made the switch soon as well.

Update: 29 June 1:14 PM: As expected, Volvo's all-electric Polestar subsidiary will start using NACS in 2025.

Read more