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Brilliant idea or dumb

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Jeffruby, May 4, 2014.

  1. Jeffruby

    Jeffruby Member

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    So I have my model s-my only car right now. And it is perfect for me, even if I need to go on long trip. (wife has van if really need to travel far off beaten path).

    Anyway, my concern is winter. When I say winter I mean blizzards. My plan was to by an old car/truck with awd or 4x4 for winter.... But the more I think about it, I'll have to insure it, hope gas doesn't go bad (as I'll use it so infrequently), and maintain it.

    Starting to flirt with idea of renting a car with awd or a small suv from first storm-end of Feb. Hmmmm.

    Maybe 1k a month for rental?
     
  2. kevincwelch

    kevincwelch Active Member

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    Not sure where you live, but I would say buying another car just for a couple months out of the winter will not be needed for 99% of people out there. With winter tires, my MS did just fine in the Chicago region this past winter, and it was one of the worst. Maybe some input from the Canadians and Norwegians can help here...unless you truly live back woods where you're not going to get plowed for weeks and routinely get a ton of snow, I think you'll be just fine with the S.
     
  3. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    That's not a bad idea. A rental, if $1000, would be cheaper than a second set of wheels with winter tires for your Model S (at least, initially over a couple of years) and puts someone else's sheet metal at risk of a fender-bender. In the event of an accident your insurance will still take a hit, but the value of your Model S won't.

    I think it makes more sense than buying, insuring, and maintaining a beater.

    If that works for you and the risks of blizzards are reasonably constrained to that period of time, then I say go for it. At least, give it a try next season and see how it works out.
     
  4. Jeffruby

    Jeffruby Member

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    Not so much that I can't drive the s in the snow, but I have a hospital job. May have to leave home in dead blizzard. Need 4x4. I think rental is way.
     
  5. Peter_M

    Peter_M Member

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    I agree with Kevin. The Model S is amazing in snow, even deep snow in unplowed roads, especially if you have air suspension. Traction control is very quick, so even if you floor it on a snowy road (not recommended other than to see how it responds), the car will still track pretty much straight ahead. So unless you've got some big hills that you'll need to drive on unplowed, the Model S should be all you need. And then you get the nicer driving for the 95% case where the roads are clear.
     
  6. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Here in Ottawa, we just had nasty winter that lasted over 5 months. I drove my Model S throughout and it performed well. If you live in a hard-core winter location like I do, I'd recommend getting better winter tires than Tesla offers (that said I've been stuck with the stock Pirellis through two winters now without major problems - the only issue with them is that once in a while you have to turn off traction control to climb a hill).
     
  7. Larry

    Larry Member

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    Watch Bjorns videos from Norway that show no need for another vehicle.
     
  8. Jeffruby

    Jeffruby Member

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    I may give it a go! Thanks guys. Can always rent after one bad experience.....
     
  9. Canuck

    Canuck Active Member

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    All plowed roads and driveways in those videos.

    I have a cabin over two mountain passes (not plowed nearly as frequently as in Norway!) with a long driveway that I have to plow myself -- and it's nice to be able to get to the house before I plow it. Even with my Tahoe Hybrid 4X4 it can be a challenge. My Model S wouldn't have a chance. So I kept the Tahoe but it's not getting much use. I'm thinking about taking the insurance off for the summer, and placing storage insurance, but then again I have to tow my boat to the lake. A few year old good 4X4 trucks are a dime a dozen these days. If you really do have tough winter conditions, then I would pick up one up and only insure it in the winter months. That will probably save you in rentals over the years and also good to have it when moving big items, towing, etc.
     
  10. kevincwelch

    kevincwelch Active Member

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    Give it a go. You can always change your mind, but I think that with the right set of tires on your S, you'll do fine.

    (I'm a doc as well and had a few late night/early morning unexpected trips to the hospital and did fine.)
     
  11. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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  12. bsd

    bsd Member

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    Around here (southern Ontario) all rentals cone with all-seasons. I'd rather chance a storm with my S with proper snow tires.
     
  13. Alysashley79

    Alysashley79 Member

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    @jeffruby do you have air suspension? If you do and you get a GOOD set of winter tires I think you will be pleasantly surprised by how the MS does in the snow. I know my tag says I live in "seattle" but I don't live in downtown. I live in a suburb on the side of a mountain quite literally that gets a TON of snow in the winter and the county plows it after all the main roads have been plowed so that means that it can be up to three days before we see a plow truck. My MS was my plow truck and it plowed through about of foot of snow in high up a hill down a hill from 700' elevation to 2300' elevation up and down three times a day. We'd have anywhere from 6" to three feet on the ground at any one given time and the car did amazingly well. I kept my honda pilot 4x4 for about a month after we took delivery of the MS and after we realized what a beast she was we sold the pilot and haven't looked back. We didn't use Teslas winter tires we mounted nokian haakas studded R7's. They were expensive and extremely loud but they were a great snow tire.
     
  14. tga

    tga Active Member

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    Not all states will let you do this. In MA, you cannot cancel insurance without cancelling the registration. Cancelling is easy, restarting is a PITA (call insurance agent, get a reg form or have them call a runner, send you new plates, pay fees, etc). MA has no such thing as "storage insurance". Want to keep comprehensive in case the car is stolen or your garage burns down? You need to pay for all of the "basic required" coverage, and a registration, too.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Can someone explain to this non-owning noob the relevance of air suspension to snow travel? I thought air on high had the same clearance (within 1/10 of an inch) as the standard suspension, and that air could only lower.

    Is there a "higher than high" setting? Super-high? Extremely high?

    Is there a table documenting ground clearance anywhere? I looked a while back but couldn't find anything specific. I was hoping to find something that said compared the two options.
     
  15. Alysashley79

    Alysashley79 Member

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    with air. There are 4 settings. 'Low', 'standard', 'high', and 'very high' the measurements off my car (and I didn't measure low) are standard=6" ground clearance, high = 7" ground clearance and very high = 8" ground clearance. I believe low May go either 1/4 or 1/2" lower than standard but not sure as I haven't measured since we got the ability back with 5.9.

    With the new 5.9 firmware they did give is the ability to drive at higher speeds in high and very high. So high we can drive up to 35mph and very high up to 20mph I have tested both and it works which is amazing as when it was snowing I was in fact in either high or very high I was not in standard (I should have mentioned that in my previous post) once I'd get to an area where the snow was packed down by other cars over time and I was able to travel at good speeds I could travel at standard but if it was fresh powder that was deep 12" or more I was in very high.
     

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