2013 Tesla Model S Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,135
edited September 2014 in Tesla


  • drcomputerdrcomputer Member Posts: 82
    We owners call it "Tesla Time". You just budget into your daily routine.
  • ghillsghills Member Posts: 1
    I like it.

    It needs a bumper sticker: "Climate change is a pipe dream"
  • majin_ssj_ericmajin_ssj_eric Member Posts: 49
    The only comment you'd get from me is "Why on earth did you buy a stupid electric car?"
  • bankerdannybankerdanny Member Posts: 1,021
    @majin: and I would think to myself, what an [non-permissible content removed]. Would you buy a $65k BMW or Audi or Mercedes or Jag or Porsche or any other big dollar luxury or sports car if you could easily afford it? If so I could just as ask why would you waste that much money on a
  • gslippygslippy Member Posts: 514
    I love the understatement of the Model S' looks. The 'Zero Emission' badges on my Leaf get some attention from time to time, but at least they're not too loud. The S is my wannabe car.
  • stovt001_stovt001_ Member Posts: 799
    "I like it. It needs a bumper sticker: "Climate change is a pipe dream"" - Yup, because the electricity that comes out of the wall to charge this car in no way comes from dirty, carbon-producing power plants, but rather from the happy wishes of puppies frolicking in a meadow on a sunny spring day.
  • robs8robs8 Member Posts: 8
    Wow majin_ssj_eric, could you give us more information about your extensive testing and analysis of this car that gives you such sharp witty insights into its quality, performance and utility? Given Consumer Report's extensive testing resulted in them awarding 99/100, their equal highest score ever for a car, I'm dying to hear all the detailed first hand evidence you have to rebut their findings
  • robs8robs8 Member Posts: 8
    Stovt001, the long tailpipe argument has been done to death. An EV on 100% results in emissions almost identical to gas cars. However no state has 100% coal, at the national average of 40% coal an EV produces about 1/3 the emissions of an ICE and the percentage of power from coal is falling every year whilst the percentage from renewables is rising.
  • fordson1fordson1 Unconfirmed Posts: 1,512
    I think the Consumer Reports rating was ridiculous. The good aspects of the Tesla are really good, like the acceleration (up to around 110 mph, that is) and the cost to run it, for the most part, but the shortcomings, like the refueling and range concerns, are really shortcomings, compared to a regular ICE car. Most Tesla owners admit this and say they bought it regardless, but for CR to go all fanboy and just disregard those aspects of the car is irresponsible. Even Tesla fans who say it's a great car admit it's not perfect. What will CR do when Tesla upgrades the battery, or expands their Supercharger network? Will CR then give it 110 out of 100 points?
  • patrick_98patrick_98 Member Posts: 2
    @ majin_ssj_eric and my response to you would be
    gee your mother must be proud of you.... now go home to your basement and maybe those evil aliens will take you for a ride in their UFO...
  • patrick_98patrick_98 Member Posts: 2
    @fordson1 I guess you did not get the memo that reported that TESLA will have Super Chargers NATIONWIDE by this time 2014

    Just in time for the TESLA Model X....
  • lagunadallaslagunadallas Member Posts: 0
    I own the exact car shown in the photo, and agree with "drcomputer" below. You have to build extra time into your day to answer questions from curious onlookers, but the car is so phenomenal that I'm happy to be a 'Tesla ambassador'. I've owned 31 very nice cars, the last of which was a 2012 M-B CLS550 that I loved, but the Model S (85 KWH Performance) is the most incredible of them all. Most of my driving is around town, and charging for 1,000/month of driving has added a whopping $20/month to my electric bill. The car is gorgeous, comfortable, really fast, nearly maintenance-free, and a blast to drive. Yes, it's very expensive and not easily justified for a "practical" purchase, but I didn't buy it for that reason. I've been car-obsessed since birth, work 70+ hours a week, and am fortunate to be able to splurge on something this special to justify my hard work and love of cars. Zero regrets, and a Tesla customer for life.
  • tokyorushtokyorush Member Posts: 24
    I love that there are so many heated comments on all sides with this car. Probably more than there are on the SLS, I'm guessing and what a great car that is as well.

    Here's the thing - Of course there are trade offs with any car. You wouldn't drive the Miata or the SLS or a 'Vette cross country if you didn't have to. They are really cool fun cars but not comfortable for a long haul and with limited cargo capacity.

    The Model S is the same. It has great practical points (100MPG, fast, rides beautifully, low maintenance except tires, and is - to my eyes - beautiful) - but, yes, 250 miles per charge (although I usually exceed that) means that you need to find a supercharger and stop for 40 minutes every 3 hours of driving or so.

    I've recently been stuck where I needed to stop at the parking lot of one of the Tesla stores for 30 minutes to get enough juice to make it to the supercharger in Milford (although with the new one in Darien that won't be a problem anymore for me).

    In any case - people should look at their real needs and the real limitations of any vehicle they use and pick accordingly. But - if your needs match the Model S's capabilities, and you want to buy something made in the US, and reduce our reliance on oil and maybe help reduce carbon emissions if you care about that - and you want a car that takes you at over 90 MPGe around 4sec 0-60 and with a range that is realistically over 250 miles then I can't think of any other alternative out there that is close.
  • barbiegbarbieg Member Posts: 1
    I've had my Model S since October 2012 and still get tons of comments, pics taken, questions, etc. I have also already put 19,000 miles on it and it still runs great. Have saved a ton of money on fuel and have driven from San Francisco to San Diego twice with zero fuel costs (thanks SuperChargers!). Definitely worth the money, though the cost is also higher because we are early adopters. But someone has to be!
  • fordson1fordson1 Unconfirmed Posts: 1,512
    patrick_98, I think Ford reported that they will soon have My Ford Touch working great. CR dinged Ford for the way MFT works NOW. In their Fusion test of a couple of months ago, do you think CR should have given Ford rave reviews on how MFT is supposed to be working this time next year? In their Tesla S test of a couple of months ago, do you think CR should consider how the Supercharger network rollout is at the time of the test, or the way Tesla promises it's going to be a year from now?
  • stovt001_stovt001_ Member Posts: 799
    Oh good, the Tesla fanboys are back to thumb up anything positive and thumb down anything negative about this car without contributing anything to the discussion other than "I love anonymously telling other people how much I spent on a car and how good for the earth I am without understanding where electricity comes from." I really like this car. I really do. It looks beautiful, performs very very well, and the niggling quality issues can be excused for a new startup. And I think Tesla is doing a great service in building up what looks like a truly fantastic infrastructure to make electric cars not only feasible, but perhaps even more convenient than electric cars. I was just talking to my wife about how nice it sounds to just charge up at night instead of going to the gas station. But my word, I don't think I'd ever want to actually own a Tesla because I would in no way want to be associated with other owners and fanboys based on what we see here. That's just the most insufferable group of holier-than-thou apologists responding with unrestrained paranoia at any perceived threat. It is just a car. A very good, very interesting, groundbreaking car to be sure, but it will not save the world, it will not cure cancer, and if everyone in the US switched to one we wouldn't make a single degree of difference in the global climate. Is it better than a gas car? Perhaps, but a lot of our power is still generated from coal - in fact the 4 massive soot belching smokestacks from my local power station are used as a navigational reference point when doing pattern work at the airport I fly out of. Other power sources are dirty too, or unreliable, or unfeasible because no one wants them in their back yard, all while gasoline engines are getting cleaner and cleaner and cleaner. So the Tesla will help, but please don't delude yourself into thinking you're single-handedly saving the world. My bike has an even lower environmental impact, but I don't have a silly bumper sticker, because I'm not making any measurable difference in the grand scheme of things. Get over yourselves, and enjoy your nice quiet luxurious car for what it is.
  • mercky1mercky1 Member Posts: 1
    @stovt001 Well, I do. Don't know where you live but I get 100% of my energy from wind farms and when that is not possible, which is very seldom, I get the rest from all renewable resources. The beauty of living in the NW far away from the Oil companies se
  • stovt001_stovt001_ Member Posts: 799
    @mercky1: Give me some specifics here. What exactly will work perfectly in my area? Wind? We get about 5 significantly windy days a year. East of us, in the dessert, they have a MASSIVE windfarm. Absolutely huge. Windmills as far as they eye can see. Its
  • millie4690millie4690 Member Posts: 1
    @stovt001 I don't own a Model S, and I doubt I ever will. Maybe if I can get one used some day. I drove a beater car for years because, in my mind, maintaining it and keeping it running as well as it could was better for the environment than creating th
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