Published on Oct 18, 2012
THIS IS the edited version of my TESLA MODEL S video review.
The car was fully charged and speed limited to 80MPH. Hopefully, you'll be able to set a speed limit so you don't find yourself busted by the PO PO.
The base model offers around 150 miles of range on a 10 hour charge while the performance models will offer 300 miles.
Right now it offers heated seats, but, cooled/heated seats aren't an option yet. A $1500 panoramic roof is an option.
I'd like to see a $40,000 model with a 100 mile range and supercharging access.
The Tesla is [B]very heavy[/B] but due to the early torque, it accelerates [B]faster[/B] than even a supercharged SRT8. That's how it killed the BMW M5.
The platform is [B]stiff[/B]. You feel almost no body roll at all and it is extremely planted.
The steering is light and will adopt to the casual driver very well.
Very, very spacious. You can have jump seats put in the rear with the kids facing out the back window for a total of 7 passengers. There are essentially 2 trunks in this car because there is no engine or battery compartment on the cabin level. It's all in the platform - BRILLIANT!
The car has a bit of wind noise/ road noise. The electric motor is near silent, so you notice the noise from outside more than usual.
I'd have liked to see some type of next generation shifter to make the car feel more like a "spaceship". A shifter like the mono-static shifters in the new BMW would be cool. They got this shifter from the Mercedes Benz parts bin (as well as the steering wheel).
I personally don't know if I could see myself buying the new SRT8 when the Tesla exists. I'm not sure what it's long term maintenance is, but what I do know is with an SRt8 you are spending around $4.30 for a gallon of Premium and only getting 14 mpg or less in the City.
The interior is roughly the same grade as a Chrysler/Ford/ GM product. Adding a massive touchscreen doesn't cause you to overlook that.
With the tax credit, this car will cost you less than the SRT8, Lincoln MKS, Mercedes E-class, BMW 5/M5, Cadillac XTS and Genesis R-spec.
The Tesla OUTPERFORMS THEM ALL.
The feature adjustment is over $4,000 when comparing the Model S to an Audi because many features commonly offered on luxury cars aren't available on the Tesla. On the performance front, you cannot get all-wheel-drive, at least not yet. This plus the lack of a geared transmission account for half of the difference. But this still leaves a couple grand. Features offered on the Audi but not the Tesla include cooled front seats, automatic climate control for the rear seats, adaptive cruise control, and a slew of safety nannies. Though you can get a rearview camera on the Tesla, you can't get obstacle detection. The feature some people will miss most: illumination for the visor mirrors.
Other missing features would benefit efficiency. Unlike in a Prius, Tesla drivers must do without detailed driving style feedback or a way to vary the sensitivity of the accelerator. (A highly responsive accelerator can make a car seem quicker, while a highly unresponsive one makes it easier to maximize efficiency.) Perhaps future software updates will provide one or both features.
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