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Buying a Model 60 while waiting for Model 3

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Sharkbait, Sep 17, 2016.

?

How many times has your Smart Air Suspension required service?

  1. Never

    9 vote(s)
    100.0%
  2. Once

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. Twice

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Three times or more

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Sharkbait

    Sharkbait Member

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    A couple days ago I took a test drive in a Model S. I have a reservation for a Model 3 but not hopeful that it will arrive before 2018, given any number of reasons why it would delayed. If the Model S turns out to be everything I wanted I might consider cancelling the reservation on the M3. So the only option I can't make up my mind on is the Smart Air Suspension.

    My personal option is that SAS or just plain air suspension is problematic on most brands and is not worth the trouble. I detest service center visits to have something repaired, especially if I could have done without it. I have a steep drive entry and could probably use it but SAS is not a 'must have'. I can negotiate the incline by approaching at a slight angle. Is there really a noticeable increase in range efficiency? How say you about SAS? Has it been problem?
     
  2. Patrick W

    Patrick W Member

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    I use air suspension daily to navigate a couple of big dips in my neighborhood and it's never failed in the year and a half I've had the car.

    Also came in handy when finding myself on a pot hole filled one way road a while back.
     
  3. Sharkbait

    Sharkbait Member

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    Do you happen to know the difference in inches between the lowest and highest setting? Thanks for your reply above.
     
  4. Btrflyl8e

    Btrflyl8e Active Member

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    Zero problems in over 3 years on my first Model S, got it again on S #2
     
  5. Patrick W

    Patrick W Member

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    Hi, Thanks for asking that. I've often wondered that myself but your question finally got me around to making the measurements.

    I measured below the driver's door (as show in the attach image) the distance between the floor and the bottom of the battery enclosure.

    135mm Low
    145mm Standard
    170mm High
    175mm Very High

    In American units I think that converts to 5.31, 5.71, 6.69 and 6.89.

    0hilow.jpg
     
    • Informative x 3
  6. Sharkbait

    Sharkbait Member

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    Yes, a little over 1.57" Thanks for the investigation and reply! I wonder if the Model S sits higher or lower to comparable cars and if the front lip of the car is even lower than at the point you made your measurement?
     
  7. Sharkbait

    Sharkbait Member

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    So researching this further, My '13 Prius ground clearance is 5.3", the same as my '97 Camry by coincidence I guess. So air suspension would be useful in the approach to my driveway, where I could raise the car to 6.89" Probably even better with 21" wheel option but I'm sticking to 19" wheels.
     
  8. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    I went SAS'less out of concerns about long term reliability, and I also liked the more connected feel of the coil suspension. Plus I don't like that air suspension settles.

    Keep in mind the default ride height of the coil suspension is higher than the SAS so it rides at a pretty standard ride height.

    Sure occasionally I've had situations where I thought "Hmm, it would be nice to raise it right here", but nothing that was a big deal. The only time I've bottomed out was at ridiculous ramp at a hotel in Portland. Just some light scrapping with nothing noticeable.

    I don't think you'll find that many failures of it yet. I think air suspension fails tend to occur later on. It's something to subject the second owner to. :)
     
  9. Sharkbait

    Sharkbait Member

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    Found the spec on Tesla support page: Model S Specifications and also on the web site toward the bottom: Model S | Tesla
    • Clearance 5.3"(Dual Motor)*, 5.5"(RWD)*
      With air suspension 4.6" - 6.3"
    So the "Very High" setting appears to only give less than an inch with a single RWD motor. I also think the low point of the undercarriage is somewhere farther under the car. I also wonder if the spec accounts for Tesla adding undercarriage protection for the battery case?

    So being able to drop a single motor variant one inch closer to the ground provides how much more range efficiency? That spec might be a little bit more difficult to ferret out.

    *Ground Clearance Reference for Base 75kW, Curb Condition
     

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