Considering an EV but worried about running out of range during long road trips? Electric carmakers have come up with a potential solution: switchable battery packs. Better Place has been rolling out these exchangeable battery packs in Israel and Denmark over the last year, and now Tesla wants to make switchable batteries a reality for its Model S range.

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The Tesla Model S range already comes with three battery pack options, for 160-, 230-, and 300-mile range capabilities. Your 300-mile-range battery pack may not need switching out very often, but the shorter-range battery packs can be dropped off at a switching station and swapped for a fresh battery pack when you leave on your trip, and you can pick up your original pack when you return. This is different from Better Place’s scheme, which involves having fresh battery packs ready to go whenever you need them but does not return your car’s original battery pack to you. With this alternate setup, Tesla is hoping to solve the potential problem of dropping off a 1-year-old battery pack only to be given a 3-year-old battery pack in its place.

+ Tesla

Via Plugin Cars