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Accident avoidance - Model S was superb!

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by mkertzman, Nov 16, 2012.

  1. mkertzman

    mkertzman 2 Roadsters, 2 Model S

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    I was driving to work in San Francisco in the rain this morning - my first drive in the rain in my week-old Model S. I was on Bay Street - undivided 2 lanes on either side with traffic lights every block. I was driving in the right lane at about 25-30 mph and there were a few cars in the left lane backed up behind a car waiting to take a left turn at the light against traffic. I was just about at the intersection when a yellow SMART car suddenly appeared making a left turn directly in front of me. The SMART is so tiny that I couldn't see her behind the cars on my left and my guess is she couldn't see past them either and she failed to see whether traffic was coming toward her in the right lane. She was DIRECTLY in front of me and, had I not done what I did, I would have impacted her with the center-to-left front of my Model S. I stepped on the brakes HARD, and swerved right and than back left and was able to maneuver around her. My observations - the Model S was spectacular - the anti-lock brakes engaged, and with the great handling and low CG there was virtually no body roll or the slightest feeling of anything less than complete control of the car. When the anti-lock brakes engaged with the hard braking, the nose didn't even dip. I am now ever MORE impressed with the Model S!

    It may sound trite, but it's true that we experience these things in slow motion. Although it all happened in an instant, my brain was thinking "Oh no, my new Model S! How am I going to get the body work done? I've only owned it a week!!!!" That's absolutely true - ALL of that went through my mind and wow, I was shaken a bit after it was done.

    Mitchell
     
  2. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    #1 - Glad it turned out well. No hurt people or machines.
    #2 - Props to Model S team.
     
  3. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    And kudos for instinctively doing the exact right thing. Best accident avoidance technique is to slam the brakes to transfer weight onto the front wheels, and THEN steer to avoid. That way your front wheels have more grip for the turn.
     
  4. gg_got_a_tesla

    gg_got_a_tesla Model S: VIN P65513, Model 3 Res Holder

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    #4 gg_got_a_tesla, Nov 16, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 13, 2016
    Wow, you dodged one there, Mitchell! Kudos to Model S!

    Thank goodness you weren't driving in Russia :)

     
  5. Krugerrand

    Krugerrand Active Member

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    Phew! :crying:
     
  6. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    So glad to hear the Model S performed admirably when it mattered most. The best way to survive an accident is to avoid it in the first place.

    I highly recommend everyone do an all day car control clinic with your local BMW, Porsche, or Audi club some time, even if you have no interest of ever going on to doing track days. You'll learn more about handling at the limit, weight transfer, skid recovery, threshold braking and accident avoidance through drills and expert instruction. Plus it's tons of fun.

    Most clubs welcome cars of all makes and models. Best way to prepare and practice and teach your muscle memory what to do in a panic situation.
     
  7. Johan

    Johan Took a TSLA bear test. Came back negative.

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    Glad you, and everyone else, are OK! Also like other very glad to hear that the car behaved so well!

    Here in Norway, and also in Sweden where I grew up, we have public "Car skid training" facilities, where it's mandatory to take a class during your driver's training, and you have to pass to get your license. But you can also (for a small fee) take you new car to one of those facilities and test it in difficult conditions. During the non-winter months they spray parts of the track with thin layers of water to simulate aquaplaning (correct word?), during winter there is actual ice. You do different drills, such as simulating trying to stop for a pedestrian at different speed, avoiding sudden obstacles (in our parts of the world obviosly shaped as moose) that appear, taking corners at different speeds etc. The whole thing is designed so that you will probably fail to do some of these at certain speeds in order to get an understanding of the physical limits of your car, and cars in general. Pretty cool and I've always done it with new cars, makes me a lot more confident driving in difficult conditions.
     
  8. contaygious

    contaygious Active Member

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    Glad it turned out well! Sf driving is surprisingly hectic. I almost did a 180 once crossing market to avoid someone driving the wrong way followed by pedestrians crossing.
     
  9. Zextraterrestrial

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    The braking / handling under hard braking is superb! In my test drive I had 5 people w/ an average weight of >200lb a piece
    at >100mph I lammed the brakes on full and did a little swervy action as I was stopping to feel the control - AMAZING.
     
  10. Brian H

    Brian H Banned

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    I wonder if any MSes will appear in Russia; handling seems to be at a premium there ...
    Driving in Russia || TNL - YouTube
     
  11. Robert.Boston

    Robert.Boston Model S VIN P01536

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    I'm fairly sure that Russia is not in the approved European warranty area. Which is too bad; I've never seen so many premium cars in one place as in certain neighborhoods of Moscow.
     
  12. Brian H

    Brian H Banned

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    From the video, I get the impression a lot of people have to rely on self-insurance. Some of the high-rollers probably do it routinely, assuming there's any loopholes in the legislation.

    Insurance in Russia is not an industry I'd like to be in.
     
  13. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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    Having worked in Russia over a long period of time I can say that car insurance there is a rarity (esp. outside of Moscow). Most people can't afford it and in any case the police decide on the spot who is at fault and then the other person pays (this leads to a situation ripe for corruption of course). Top end cars generally belong to politicians, criminals or big businessmen (who may have also grown their business using, ahem, shady methods). If you damage a really nice (read: expensive) car, you're probably better off just admitting negligence and paying. There's a major risk that you'll end up paying a much higher price otherwise.

    OK, end of Russia discussion, let's stay on topic please.
     

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