For Immediate Release: September 13, 2023

SMUD, Optiwatt expand incentivized EV charging program for Sacramento-area EV owners

Electric vehicle test program adds Tesla, optimizes charging, compensates customers

Sacramento, CA [September 13, 2023] – SMUD and Optiwatt, a leading telematics-based managed charging platform, today announced a partnership to expand SMUD’s existing EV charging pilot to include Tesla drivers and help meet increased energy demand as more Californians adopt electric vehicles.

Together, Optiwatt and SMUD invite Tesla owners across the Sacramento region to participate in the SMUD Managed EV Charging program, a test program which monitors, automates and manages customers’ EV charging needs in balance with grid demands. Users are incentivized with a one-time $150 reward per vehicle after sign-up, as well as an ongoing $20 quarterly rebate for the duration of vehicle’s enrollment. All rewards are remitted directly through the Optiwatt platform, available via gift card, Venmo, Paypal or ACH deposit.

As federal, state and local governments and vehicle manufacturers more aggressively target net-zero emissions in cars and passenger trucks, utilities across the nation are planning for increases to grid demands. Pairing Optiwatt’s application technology with SMUD’s distribution to more than 1.5 million customers, the Managed EV Charging program is an important step in ensuring the grid maintains long-term resilience during the influx of vehicle electrification.

"Electric vehicle charging is an increasingly significant load for utilities nationwide and is poised to become one of the primary demands on tomorrow's clean energy grid," Optiwatt founder and CEO Casey Donahue said. "SMUD's commitment to achieving zero carbon emissions makes it an ideal partner to facilitate this transformation, while also simultaneously boosting energy infrastructure resilience, ensuring grid reliability in the face of extreme weather events, maintaining some of California’s lowest rates and enabling advanced EV charging technology to drive us closer to a more sustainable energy future."

The SMUD Managed EV Charging program supports Ford, GM, BMW and now Tesla, battery electric vehicles (BEVs). Tesla vehicles are now supported by the Optiwatt application, while Ford, GM and BMW customers can sign up directly with the car manufacturers App.

"SMUD's Managed Charging EV program is just one of our many partnerships and initiatives aimed at advancing regional decarbonization without compromising grid resilience or the affordability of electric service," said SMUD's Chief Zero Carbon Officer Lora Anguay. "We're gaining firsthand experience in what a zero-carbon future entails, as we continue to expand the far-reaching environmental, health, and economic benefits of a clean energy future to all customers."

To enroll, Tesla owners can download the free Optiwatt app, available on iOS, Android or on the web. Visit SMUD’s Managed EV Charging program page for more information.

For additional information visit the partnership enrollment details overview.

About SMUD

As the nation’s sixth-largest, community-owned, not-for-profit electric service provider, SMUD has been providing low-cost, reliable electricity to Sacramento County for more than 75 years. SMUD is a recognized industry leader and award winner for its innovative energy efficiency programs, renewable power technologies and for its sustainable solutions for a healthier environment. Today, SMUD’s power supply is

on average about 50 percent carbon free and SMUD has a goal to reach zero carbon in its electricity production by 2030. For more information on SMUD’s Zero Carbon Plan and its customer programs, visit

About Optiwatt

Headquartered in San Francisco, California, Optiwatt is the largest telematics-based home energy analytics platform in North America. The company’s partnerships with national utilities providers and production consumer facing applications reduce cost and energy usage for home and auto owners. Optiwatt’s technology has attracted investors such as Alphabet’s GV wing, Urban Innovation Fund, Active Impact Investments and Thin Line Capital. For more information, please visit