With used prices of Model S' coming down, I know there are many who are shopping CPOs and Private sales as an entry point into a Tesla. Prior to purchasing, I did the same. On paper, the items are easy to find. Things like the center console, ui changes, etc., but what does this all mean in day to day living? What would we be missing? I ended up purchasing a 2016 S60D AP2, but recently got a 2013 S85 as a loaner and decided to write about the two. Credit to these posts going from a (2013 S85 to a 2016 S90D) and (S85 to S60) while I was shopping, my situation was the reverse. It's important to note that I kept my settings the same and drove it the same to keep as accurate of a comparison as possible. So how did it stack up? First Impressions Count It looks the same. Yes, it was refreshed, but approaching the car; it's the same. It wasn't until I opened the door that I remembered in the morning that I had a loaner. Once I remembered that, I backed off and decided to take a walk around to see what I thought. The car looked.....still the same. Yes, the nose is refreshed. I prefer the refresh look, but it still took a walk around the car to notice and remember it. Does it matter? Yes. Is it worth $20-30,000? That's not for my pocket book to decide. Dual Motors I live in a moderate climate in the Northeast, so we have a preference for dual motors. Unfortunately, the time we had the loaner it was cold but there was no slippery conditions to test the effectiveness with and without the dual motors. Battery Pack & Range The S85 achieved a 80% charge of 210 mi, a roughly 1% loss over 3-4 years. The S60D achieves a 80% charge of 175mi. Over the course of my normal daily routine (70 mi commute + lunch, errands, etc.,) this was not a noticeable difference for me. Neither required charging during the day. The consumption told a different story. Our S60D shows an average consumption of ~350wh/mi, whereas the S85 was averaging ~400wh/mi. Acceleration S60D does 0-60 in 5.2s. The 2013 S85 was rated for a 0-60 in 5.2s. So they should be the same. In day to day driving, there were no appreciable differences. But that probably doesn't excite you. So for your benefit, and your benefit alone, with no self serving desire, I mashed the go pedal. On paper, they should have been the same. From a dead stop, it did feel largely the same. However, from a roll of about 10mph and passing on the highway, the S85 felt significantly faster. On the S60D, after the initial torque rush, you can feel the car level off. With the S85, you can feel the car keep surging forward. Next Generation Seats Our S60D has the next generation seats made by Recaro (not the latest premium seats) The S85 had the original leather seats. The S60D is much more comfortable for my preference, and hugs better. The S85 seats felt more like seats out of a minivan, with minimal support. On the positive side, without larger bolsters, the S85 was easier to get in and out of. And while in pictures, they often do not look like they've held up well, the leather appeared to be in good condition. I suspect the side bolsters on my S60D will get worn out relatively quickly as we brush up against them every time we get in and out. Premium Upgrade Package On the ordering side, there's a lot of debate around this package. Especially as the prices continue to creep up. We did not purchase this on our S60D as we highly disliked the alcantra trim, and preferred not to have a power liftgate. The S85 came with the PUP (but no alcantra, which would have made a difference to me), and I got a chance to live with it. Initially, it has a bit of a wow/cool factor. As the door handles extend, the handles light down on the ground. It's neat, but ultimately it served no real purpose. The lighting is extremely dim and barely lights anything up. Once inside, you can tell leather does cover a good portion of the car. On a non-PUP in a 2016, you get synthetic materials (same materials that make up the ultra white leather seats) that cover the armrests, steering wheel, and side trim. The leather used in the PUP was a lot more pronounced in grains, and a lot harder in feel. Some of it was nice, the steering wheel in specific felt nicer in real leather. The rest of it was lost and melted away after I was done with my observations. They didn't add to detract from my ability to enjoy the car, nor did it give me any sense this was a more premium product that what I owned. The power liftgate. This is a YMMV. We hate power liftgates. We've had them in other cars, we dislike them. We didn't get it because we thought we would dislike it. My contempt for such a thing was validated as 30 seconds after parking, I had a full on fight with the power liftgate. I'm also pretty sure I lost that fight as my wife laughed at me in my frustration. So for your amusement... I went to the trunk to retrieve out things. The power liftgate takes over to enable a soft open. Our garage is low clearance. I quickly realized the hatch would hit the garage door and did not want to damage it. I attempted to stop it from opening all the way, but the door resisted. How much pressure do I put on it? Will it break the mechanism? TOO LATE! I gave it more pressure. Luckily the safety mechanisms caught on and stopped the door from opening. Unfortunately, the door decided to do a full reverse and close itself...I'm back to square one. This repeated several times... Finally, I admitted defeat. I played a game of - open the trunk, grab my things, trigger the safety close and finish pulling things out before it fully closed. My wife found it highly amusing. I was outsmarted by a power liftgate. Dash & UI The screens on the S85 were noticeably slower. The navigation in particular was the most noteworthy as rendering times took a bit longer. The graphics weren't as detailed either in the S85. The dashboard on the S85 though was appreciated. I do wish my S60D had the ability to provide an all in one speedometer, energy meter circle in the middle. While the S60D displays lane information on the dash instead, I find the original meters on the S85 more informative and useful than the lane display of my S60D. Ultimately, I think I should be visually seeing my lane and glancing down at the meter. AP & Sensor Hardware The S85 did not have autopilot. My S60D also does not have autopilot enabled, so this would be an even comparison. The hardware available on the two cars does make a difference though. Something as simple as the parking sensors, the S60D provides a very detailed cocoon of what is happening. I have learned to trust it tremendously. The older technology does not provide that level of detail, but instead shows a bar on each side of the sensors - more of an approximation of distance. It still shows inches to impact, but it assumes a consistent circle within it's detection area. The AP2 hardware will actually provide details of an object that is closer or further within that same circle. Storage & Convenience How in the word did you early adopters drive a Model S???? As I commuted to work, my coffee and water bottle slid back and forth on the yatch floor. On one particular right hand turn, the bottle slid across the floor, hit the side and splashed open. I screamed to myself "WHY THE F$#@ DOES THIS NOT HAVE A CUPHOLDER?!?" The storage console in my 2016 is simple. It looks good. It works. I like cupholders. Subzero I'm a huge heated steering wheel fan. I've gone through the trouble of even retrofitting it on some of my other cars. When we purchased our S, this was a non-discussion package for me. As I got the S85, I thought I would miss my heated steering wheel, but was surprised that I really didn't. (My wife disagrees, she did miss it) What I did miss, was preheating. Since loaners can not be connected to the app, preheating was not an option. If you are on a tight budget, I wouldn't hesitate to skip subzero given the ability to preheat. One other tiny thing I noticed, was that the defroster vents were different on the S85. The older defrost vents were more apparent in a glare on the windshield. It wasn't majorly distracting, but it was noticeable. The overall HVAC system was also not as effective. In my S60D, I often find it gets up to temp quickly and remains comfortable. On several occasions while commuting, I found myself thinking - I'm a little chilly in the S85, especially around the legs/feet. Both cars used the same climate settings. Driving Dear Tesla, what in the world did you change? The S85 drives like a completely different car than the S60D. Since purchasing my S60D, I have said on a number of times "As a car, the Tesla is really actually pretty bad. As a piece of technology, it's down right impressive." As a car enthusiast, I stood by that. The regen braking works, but when combined with overly sensitive brakes, it becomes grabby. It's difficult to modulate speed when driving aggressively. What's worse, is the steering feel. While the different modes add resistance to the steering, it is not commutative at all. I enjoy driving, and I like knowing what the car is doing. When driving my S60D, I simply can't feel the road. There's extremely limited feedback. I'm a driver that wants to feel the pebble, wants to feel what the tires are doing, so I can adjust and drive. I just don't get that in my S60D. As a result, I like using the car. It's an impressive piece of technology. I just don't love driving the car. I haven't dove into the technical specifications. I don't know if it's a suspension change, steering change, software programming, or the fact that it doesn't have dual motors dampening the steering. I don't know what's different, but holy crap I genuinely enjoyed driving the S85. The software settings didn't matter - comfort, standard, sport. You could still feel the slightly artificial power steering boost. The important part is that I knew what the car was doing. The feedback was there! With the S60D, I always have a desire to head towards the nearest highway. I find myself contemplating whether or not I should purchase EAP. With the S85, I found myself looking for some backgrounds to drive, carve up some turns, and just enjoy driving. I found it genuinely fun. Now I'll have to find a 2016 S75/90 to see if it's a RWD vs AWD difference, or if the older cars were just set up differently. Conclusion On a day to day basis, the differences are really not as large as they seem on paper. The newer car does seem newer. There's slightly less creaks, but the S85 never seemed like a kit car to me. It didn't feel cheap, and there weren't any noises that were annoying. The two largest differences were the lack of a center console, but that can be retrofit; and the driving dynamics of the car. Which may or may not be a generational change. If you're looking for a cheaper way to get into a Tesla, I would not hesitate to jump into a used S85.