Plug & Play
TESLA: Electrifying the Luxury Driving Experience
Tesla Motors was started with a singular purpose: “to make driving an electric car awesome.” Elon Musk, the co-founder and former Chairman and CEO of PayPal, is the CEO and Product Architect of Tesla Motors. Along with a diverse group of Silicon Valley engineers and professionals, Musk and his team are succeeding in reinventing the electric car. Where most manufacturers so far have come out with either hybrids or low-range electric cars, the Tesla Model S, Tesla’s first high-volume car, aims to change the game. This luxury electric performance sedan has done just what it set out to do – make electric vehicles realistic.
“We will prove that technology really works and that consumers want to buy electric vehicles,” Musk said.
The First True Luxury Electric Automobile
First of all, range is terribly important to making an electric car functional. Most electric cars on the market allow for between 50 and 100 miles of range. The Tesla has a 265-mile range, more than enough for the average commute and then some. In addition, Telsa is adding Supercharger stations that will recharge 150 miles of that range in about 30 minutes. Though mostly in Tesla’s home state of California, Supercharger stations are popping up in Delaware and Connecticut, with planned expansion throughout North America.
“Without people even having to think about it or Tesla having to physically touch the car, the free long distance travel enabled by our Superchargers will steadily improve with each passing month,” said Musk.
The interior of the Model S is exemplary as well. It uses premium materials, a minimalist approach to design, and a whopping 17-inch touchscreen LED monitor that controls all aspects of the vehicle, as well as offering Internet connectivity and constant over-the-air computer updates from Tesla. Add all of the niceties you expect – such as two USB outlets for charging devices, a true HD backup camera, Bluetooth hands-free phone integration, seating for five adults and two children, and a svelte figure that is both aerodynamic and practical, and the Model S really starts to make sense.
“For an added bit of fun, customers in most markets will have the choice of taking home one of our Tesla Roadster sports cars when their car is in for service. Few experiences are more sublime than driving a beautiful electric sports car on a road along the ocean or through a forest with the top down on a summer day and hearing only the sounds of nature,” said Musk.
Fast and Frugal
The power train of the Tesla is as revolutionary as the rest of the car, with a focus on performance and handling unseen so far in the electric car world. The Model S battery pack is mounted below the floor for an ideal center of gravity and a near 50/50 front to rear weight distribution, both quite important for vehicle dynamics. With an estimated 0-60 time of 4.2 seconds, 416 equivalent horsepower, and a top speed of 130mph, the Tesla more than competes with its gas-powered competitors.
After hearing about all of these features, one would inevitably come to the conclusion that the Fremont, California, manufactured Model S is very expensive. Tesla has engineered the vehicle and production process to keep the price competitive with current luxury vehicles, such as the BMW 7 series and Mercedes S class, while delivering an astounding 89MPGe. With a base-price of $63,000, including a $7,500 tax incentive for personal-use buyers, approximately 20,000 Tesla Model S will be produced in 2013. The first step is to design your car at www.Teslamotors.com.
Elon Musk truly has led Tesla to make an intriguing product. It takes a visionary to engineer and produce a vehicle so drastically different. “We want people to buy the car because it’s a great car and – oh yeah – it’s electric.”