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Let the adventure begin

Discussion in 'Blog Archive' started by efusco, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

    Mar 29, 2009
    Nixa, Missouri, United States

    I'm buying a Model S, hope to take delivery within the next 2 months (1 would be great, but probably unrealistic). The moderators just created this new blog section and based upon my long (9 year) ownership experience with my Prius I know that buying a new sort of high tech vehicle is full of adventures, good and bad. I'll start my story today with why I chose to go electric, and most importantly why I chose to buy a Tesla Model S....

    I'm an ER physician. Growing up we drove what we could afford, gas was cheap and I never really gave a second though to what my gas mileage was so much as considering any sort of alternative energy vehicle. In 2000 I moved from Alaska to Southwest Missouri. Gas prices were still pretty low and I was still driving a Ford Expedition I purchased in 1996-97...great SUV, very roomy and comfortable and powerful.

    My commute was/is about 15 miles each way and the Expedition got ~12-13MPG, so I was burning up at least 2 gallons of gas a day, often more, just going to and from work. At some point around 2002that fact struck me as pretty stinking wasteful. Mind you environmental issues, cost, tree hugging, the Middle East situation (despite 9/11) really didn't factor in, it just seemed stupid to be burning that quantity of gasoline. Sometime in late 2002 or early 2003 I saw a blurb in a magazine about some car called the Toyota Prius hybrid, it had some cool technical information about how it worked and how it got such great gas mileage and I was really intrigued by the technology and the logic of it all utilizing the battery as an energy buffer to permit the use of a lower power highly fuel efficient ICE. I test drove a 2003 Prius and a Honda Civic Hybrid. Found them both to be "OK", but they had some impracticalities, lacked some power/speed and room and I had a family with twin boys that were likely to only get bigger and the Expedition was still running well.

    Then in May of that year the 2004 Gen II Prius was announced with a complete radical redesign and dramatically improved fuel economy, room and other specs and I was sold. I managed to 'steal' a Prius Pioneer slot to grab one of the first Gen IIs on the road and took delivery in Oct. 2003. Many of the people on this forum know me from my long-time moderation on Priuschat as I've been a Prius "Maven" and am even a "Prius Expert" on Toyota's official Prius Facebook page.

    [float-left] 5402039591_0dd5a741d8.jpg
    Me in Vanuatu a couple years back. by efusco[/float-left]As the Prius proved itself, the battery proved it's long-term durability and as I watched hybrid and EV technology grow I started wanting more as regards efficiency. The aspects mentioned above (environment, foreign oil, tree hugging, etc.) became more important to me as I became immersed in the alternative automobile culture. I kept waiting for Toyota to produce a legitimate Prius Plug-in hybrid or, ideally, a Prius EV...but that never happened and it was made clear to me that they had no intention of doing so unless and until forced to by compliance standards. At some point I watched "Who Killed the Electric Car" and I was livid. Gas prices were continuing to go up with no sign of stopping, the situation in Iraq and Afganistan were not improving and the skys were getting no cleaner and I began looking more and more in to Plug-in conversions, EV conversions and watching the EV horizon. Unfortunately none of the available options were practical or reliable for someone who needs a reliable family vehicle with enough range to accomodate the relatively rural area where I live and to take longer trips about once or twice a month.

    I knew about the Roadster and watched that drama unfold, but clearly that was not in the budget and had no room for a family. I knew about the possible "White Star and Blue Star" plans, but who knew if that would every really happen. In 2009 when word started coming out that maybe it really was going to happen I waited and as soon as Tesla announce, in March, that it really was going to happen I made my deposit and have been committed every since.

    I don't believe EVs are for everyone and even doubt they'll be the most common personal transportation in 20 years, but I do believe we, who have the financial wherewithall and the willingness to be early adopters need to be the ones who take the reins and drive this technology foreward so that it can come down in price, improve in quality and become accessible to a much wider audience to start addressing all the concerns mentioned above. We're early in the "alpha" phase of this with the available EVs and plug-ins, but the Tesla is a huge step into the "Beta" stage.

    At this point my garage is wired with a NEMA 14-50 outlet and a 100amp line (that was a bit of an adventure too) all set for the Tesla HPWC as soon as those are shipped out. I've got a copy of the owner's quick guide and I'm ready for my car, as soon as Elon is ready to deliver it to me.
  2. Kipernicus

    Kipernicus Model S Res#P1440

    Dec 2, 2009
    Belmont, CA
    Great story Evan. Do you want to talk about how you got an "R" reservation? Some friend of yours has a roadster? Did you get to ride/drive it?
  3. Right_Said_Fred

    Right_Said_Fred Moderator

    May 11, 2012
    Gorinchem, Netherlands
    Your 'transformation' makes for nice reading, Evan.

    I've had a similar experience, from badly wanting a Maserati ten years ago (didn't care about the mileage) to my current situation with a Chevy Volt and Fisker Karma, both powered by solar panels on my house and business, and with a deposit on a Model S. I've come to dislike full ICE's as dirty dinosaurs, and want to be part of an expanding movement to get rid of them.

    Good luck with your Model S, which I hopes arrives soon. We in Europea have to wait a bit longer.
  4. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

    Jun 21, 2012
    Great introduction, Evan... I have to confess that I will balance out pulling my boat with my huge Suburban, and the nearly unlimited fun that I have with my 1965 Pontiac GTO will have to be balanced out with the savings from my Model S. :)

    The Model S is the first *real* alternative-energy car that works for me -- like you, I live in a rural area. I have to drive roughly 30 miles for anything more than basic groceries, school, etc. The Prius looks and drives like a toy to me (sorry, I really can't stand them), and the Volt's 30-45 mile max range on battery is a joke for the needs I have, and the Fisker is just unappealing to me -- it doesn't seem like there is anything "revoluationary" about it.

    The Model S is revolutionary. I love it.

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