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Help the wife and I decide between the 70D or the 85!

First post!

The wife and I decided it was time to pick up a Tesla after our test drive in Los Angeles yesterday. We drove a 70D and loved it. Upon getting back to Tesla and building our own, we couldn't decide between the 70D or the 85. The car will likely be heading to Missouri sometime next year, so that plays into this as well.

With the 70D, we can get all the options we want, and the AWD.

With the 85, we can still get all the options we want, but we lose the AWD.

Me, being a male, likes the idea of the 85 because it's the flagship model, minus the "D" - So I can get the 85, gain more mileage, but lose the AWD. Or I can get the 70D, get all the options, still a stellar car, get AWD, but I lose some mileage and I don't have the 85 so any potential upgrades may(?) be limited.

I am sure this has been hashed out before, but going through about 8 pages of the forum didn't really yield what I was looking for.

As much as I like the 85, I think the 70D is the better choice, but need you experts to help us for sure!
 
Really depends upon whether you think you will need AWD. Being in SoCal, there is hardly a need for AWD, however the AWD may help resale if you are thinking of doing that down the line. As far as speed, my 85 can beat 95% of the cars on the road in acceleration. I haven't been able to go much faster than the speed of traffic when I go up to LA. With an 85 you'll have more frunk space. What did you test drive? An 85D? I would go back and test drive an 85.
 
Really depends upon whether you think you will need AWD. Being in SoCal, there is hardly a need for AWD, however the AWD may help resale if you are thinking of doing that down the line. As far as speed, my 85 can beat 95% of the cars on the road in acceleration. I haven't been able to go much faster than the speed of traffic when I go up to LA. With an 85 you'll have more frunk space. What did you test drive? An 85D? I would go back and test drive an 85.

We test drove a 70D - We have an appointment to test the 85 tomorrow.
 

BoerumHill

not great not terrible
Apr 23, 2015
736
218
New York, NY
We test drove a 70D - We have an appointment to test the 85 tomorrow.

Note - not an owner, so this is just theory & observation from months of research.

Lots of pros & cons for both. 70D owners seem to think its quite efficient. In most instances, I think it has more than enough range on SC network - but that's a question for people who have made the L.A. middle western states trek. Personally I'm a big fan of the extra space in the frunk. But some will tell you they rarely or never use the frunk because the trunk is cavernous, so YMMV.

Go with what your wife decides. You're choosing between awesome and awesome; not a hill to die for, pard.

:)
 

TexasEV

Well-Known Member
Jun 5, 2013
7,656
8,935
Austin, TX
It comes down to a tradeoff between the 25 miles of extra range and AWD. Which would you benefit from more? There is no right answer to that question, it depends on what your driving pattern will be like in Missouri. I wouldn't base this decision on the possibility of upgrading a 85 to who knows what at some undefined future time, base it on which car is right for you now. You didn't say which options you would get on the 70D, but none are really that important.
 
Note - not an owner, so this is just theory & observation from months of research.

Lots of pros & cons for both. 70D owners seem to think its quite efficient. In most instances, I think it has more than enough range on SC network - but that's a question for people who have made the L.A. middle western states trek. Personally I'm a big fan of the extra space in the frunk. But some will tell you they rarely or never use the frunk because the trunk is cavernous, so YMMV.

Go with what your wife decides. You're choosing between awesome and awesome; not a hill to die for, pard.

:)

Is the frunk bigger on the D version of the normal version?

- - - Updated - - -

Just making sure - I couldn't tell from the OP - you do know there's an 85D too? Is it a budget thing to not consider it?

Correct, 85D is out of the budget. Per the wife........!
 
It comes down to a tradeoff between the 25 miles of extra range and AWD. Which would you benefit from more? There is no right answer to that question, it depends on what your driving pattern will be like in Missouri. I wouldn't base this decision on the possibility of upgrading a 85 to who knows what at some undefined future time, base it on which car is right for you now. You didn't say which options you would get on the 70D, but none are really that important.

The only real option we added was the sub-zero weather package. I love the idea of the upgraded interior package, but for some reason, $3,000 for it seems outrageous. Is there anything I should look at harder?
 

BoerumHill

not great not terrible
Apr 23, 2015
736
218
New York, NY
RWD S60 & S85 have an open box in the frunk commonly referred to as the microwave. AWD don't have that extra cube because that's where the front motor sits.

- - - Updated - - -

The only real option we added was the sub-zero weather package. I love the idea of the upgraded interior package, but for some reason, $3,000 for it seems outrageous. Is there anything I should look at harder?

Agreed PIL for $3K is hard to justify, but almost everyone says to get it if for no other reason than the power lift back. Crazy logic but actually actually true.
 

Ugliest1

S85: "Sparky"
Supporting Member
Aug 19, 2013
1,401
1,661
Victoria BC Canada
Well... I have the 'normal' 85 and it certainly handles fabulously. Haven't had it in snow yet. I test-drove a 70D a couple of months ago but it was a gorgeous day in town -- the sales rep said I really wouldn't notice a difference until it snowed or rained. So... AWD, not AWD?? Don't know; happy with 2 wheels.

Per mileage, we've been on several trips, one really long one. It's only once in a blue moon where we have to be cognizant of hyper-miling (e.g., Mt Shasta to Reno direct last month for the first time, and wasn't a problem). Usually on trips I have the battery slider set at 90% and usually arrive at the next supercharger with between 30-60 miles left -- and that's *NOT* charging to 90%, that's charging to whatever rated miles we'll need, plus a buffer of 20-30 miles.

The big question is, will you be driving a lot in winter / cold temperatures? Then I can see the added 25mi for an 85 being useful. But for spring/summer/fall driving... well, although we do have an 85, we very rarely use all of it. Hope that helps. You and your wife will be very happy, I know that.
 

Electricfan

Active Member
Aug 24, 2013
1,253
378
Houston
How long will you keep the car? Batteries degrade. With the 85 you have more room for that.

Two electric drives equals twice as complex. Imagine an ICE car with a combustion engine in the front and another in the back. How fun would that be when tune-ups are required? I don't see anybody else talking about this on the forum, so maybe I'm all wet here, but I bought mine partly for this reason - one motor is less to maintain in the long run. Elon Musk said "its like a twin engine plane - one engine fails you fly on the other", but if you read this forum that doesn't seem to be the case if the rear motor fails - car stops. If the front motor fails it will limp somewhere, so there is that.

Pay attention to noise when you drive the D vs the plain-jane one engine model. I heard the front motor whine quite clearly in every D I drove (70 and 85 and P85).

Steering feel - do you like the feel of the front wheels pulling? Personally I hate it.

Thats my two cents!! Buy either one - you'll be happy with it, I guarantee it!
 

jerry33

(S85-3/2/13 traded in) X LR: F2611##-3/27/20
Supporting Member
Mar 8, 2012
20,675
28,601
Texas
1) The larger the battery, the longer the car will have usable range, the more flexibility you will have on trips, and the faster it will charge. (Faster charging means that the taper will start later)

2) The 2WD has more frunk room (a lot more).

3) The AWD has more starting traction in snow (but not more stopping traction)
 

JPP

Active Member
Feb 4, 2013
3,086
1,349
SF Bay Area, CA
We own both (see signature below). I like the handling and performance of the S70D over the S85. We live in a temperate climate --no snow. Still like the advantages of dual motor/AWD. Better 0-60 time. Range is pretty similar due to efficiencies of dual motor--not too worried. I do miss the larger frunk, but there is just so much room in the back, it's no biggie. The noise from the front motor is not objectionable.
 
As many say, depends on driving style. As seen in the Tesla range estimator, around town simple driving, decent weather (not super cold), and not say above 65/75 all the time, the 70D actually is more efficient and thus gets almost equal or better range than all the other models - it weighs a little less and tempers the voltage to power its motors. It still has way more than enough speed, power, 0-30, 0-60, etc for most people. It's faster than 80% of the cars on the road, etc. ;-)

The options are really nice to haves on the car and IMHO make it seem complete, like a full luxury car standard that it is competing with, etc. A fully loaded Model S, brings it up to par in options with most other luxury cars (and in some cases it still falls short in fit & finish). But, leave options off and you won't be able to add them later very easily...

Either way, can't go wrong with any model it seems.
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Moderator
The "microwave" space in the frunk is taken up by the front drive unit on the Ds
The frunk size difference between a RWD car and an AWD car is more than just the "microwave" box space between the wheels being missing in the AWD, the rear wall of the frunk is moved forward a several inches in the AWD car.
You really have to see the difference to appreciate its significance. That said, the trunk is so big that some people never use the frunk.
To the OP: it appears you live in Los Angeles. Unless you are a skier and make regular trips to Mammoth every winter, I see no compelling reason for AWD. In any case the Norwegians love their RWD Teslas. Get the 85.
UPDATE: Oops, missed the part about you moving to Missouri in the near future. My condolences. [emoji6] I still recommend the 85 for those subzero winter days when you won't get anywhere near the EPA rated range and will be happy to have the extra battery capacity.
 
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