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Model S as a car (forgetting the EV)

Discussion in 'Model S' started by evinfairfax, Jan 26, 2012.

  1. evinfairfax

    evinfairfax Member

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    I'm a new reservation holder, and have been reading this forum for a couple of months now. Excellent information!

    I have never ordered anything that I can think of that takes 15 months to deliver. Except a house, of course, but with a house you can see progress and have some involvement each month. And with kids, they only take about 9 months to make. So I'm not even sure I will be still interested in this car in 15 months! But we'll see.

    My question is about my view of the car as a car. Like most I haven't driven this car yet, but my interest in it is perhaps different from most others. For me, the EV aspect of it is maybe the 4th or 5th important issue. My biggest interest in the vehicle is the idea of having (1) a very low CG, (2) a wide torque band, and (3) the smoothest, least-annoying, transmission possible - no transmission at all.

    In my mind, this should be a very fun car but in a much more practical package, albeit with much less luxury than other cars in this price range. So I'm choosing this as a fun car to drive with a better drivetrain than my other choices in this price class (CLS-class, A7, or 4-door 6-series), trading off luxury for driving physics that those cars just can't have.

    So if the EV aspect of it is not that important to me (it's nice, but not my focus), then is the car itself worth the tradeoffs? Is anyone else thinking of buying this for the same reasons as I am?
     
  2. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

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    Being an EV isn't at the top of my list, but the things I like (expected driving characteristics) ARE because it's an (well designed) EV. I like the styling for the most part, and I'm extremely excited by all the tech and doodads (door handles, touch screen etc).

    I think I'm most happy about the 4.4 0-60 and linear acceleration tho!
     
  3. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    I was talking to my Ranger yesterday, and he told me he got a chance to drive a Model S last time he was in Fremont, on the same course as the test rides during the factory event. He was very enthusiastic about it. He said the handling was simply amazing. He also said the production cars are going to be much quieter than the Betas we rode in (if that's even possible!). Sounds like it's going to be an awesome car, and apparently it even runs on electricity!
     
  4. evinfairfax

    evinfairfax Member

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    #4 evinfairfax, Jan 26, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2012
    yes, that's a nice way to say it. That's exactly what I'm hoping.

    Not to say that energy efficiency and environmental issues are not important to me. And I realize the physics of the car are possible because of being a true EV. But what I really hope to be buying is a wonderful handling car with a near perfect drivetrain (no slushbox, and linear power at all times)
     
  5. Citizen-T

    Citizen-T Active Member

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    Personally, I'm looking forward to being able to drive this car like I stole it every day to work and back, and not having to feel bad about it at all. It'll cost me an extra, like, 50 cents a week to actually enjoy the thing.

    If I could do that in an ICE, that'd be fine too; but I can't.
     
  6. Lyon

    Lyon 2016 S P100DL, 2016 X P90D

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    Amen to that!
     
  7. goyogi

    goyogi Member

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    Yes! I had a slow ride home in my Volt today to eek out as much EV juiciness as possible before the stinky gas engine kicked in. I got 47.8 miles on the charge (not bad for cold weather and a 35mpc rated pack). I was thinking while I was babying the car how I would be bolting around if I already had my Tesla.
     
  8. bolosky

    bolosky Member

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    The past couple of weeks my Roadster's been getting service (yes, it's a long time but they did major work, wait until I post the pictures). In the mean time I've been driving a 1995 Nissan Pathfinder.

    I've had the Roadster for 2+ years now, but nothing really brings out how great it is to drive like not having it for a while. ICEs just suck compared to the way EVs drive. They're slow off the line, noisy, stinky, loud, unresponsive at most any speed, jerky (from shifting), and just generally a pain.

    The S won't have quite the performance of the Roadster, but on the continuum from Roadser to 1995 Pathfinder, I'm betting that the S will be WAY closer to Roadster. It may even handle better due to the low CG.

    This is a point that I try to make to lots of people, and most of them don't get it. EVs are so much better to drive than ICEs that it's not even close.

    I predict that you'll love driving your S.
     
  9. Blastphemy

    Blastphemy Member

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    I agree that the Model-S will be at the level of any Mercedes-Benz, BMW, etc. in the same price range when it comes to responsiveness, and it may very well be the quietest car on the road bar none beating the likes of Lexus and Rolls Royce in that respect. But if you're looking for other features like seat memory, cooled seats, passenger sun shades, NavTraffic, adaptive cruise control, blind spot warning, head's-up display, night vision, around-view parking video monitor, parking sonar, and other features that are nearly standard in newer cars from $60,000-$85,000 from many manufacturers, you're not going to get them with the Model-S.

    So if a silent cabin and a thrilling drive are your top desires (aside from the EV aspect, which is huge IMHO), then this is your car. If you want more standard "luxury" features, then get an LS460 and save yourself $10-30k (but forget about the LS600hL which is well over $100k and is a complete waste of money compared to the Model-S...although you can pick one up today, unlike the Tesla!).
     
  10. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    I think Blastphemy captured the difference between Premium and Luxury, well at least by one metric.

    - Premium is first-class for primary functions.
    - Luxury is "more than you need for primary functions".
     
  11. neroden

    neroden Happy Model S Owner

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    You have a custom-built house? I envy you. I was in a hurry so I had to buy and modify. :smile:

    Well, or 18 years, depending on how you look at it. :wink:

    Well, everyone's interested for different reasons. For me, the Signature is going to be the first car I've ever driven which I'm not allergic to, which is kind of a big deal. I'm sure people can think of other reasons beyond "getting off of gas" (though getting off of gas is huge for me). In terms of performance, I'm looking forward to the really stable handling due to the low center of gravity; I don't care much, personally about your other two interests (though I respect them). I also really like the idea of a car with less of a maintenance hassle.

    In fact, wide torque band and least-annoying transmission -> electric car. That's just a characteristic of the technology; you can't get that behavior with an ICE, or a steam engine. :tongue: So you want an electric car with a low center of gravity, and model S is the first such car. It will also probably be one of the best designed for several years; everyone else seems to be playing catch-up to Tesla.

    I think you'll like this car.

    Regarding "luxury features", I like some of them and don't really care much about others; it seems like I'm getting most of the ones I care about in the Signature (including seat memory), but as always "your mileage may vary". All the fancy parking cameras and sonar gizmos would be kind of nice, but I never had them before and I can live without them; the backup camera will already be better than anything I've driven.
     
  12. Sig698

    Sig698 Model S Sig Perf #698

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    I wasn't particularly enthusiastic about EVs until I started doing more research, and I'm getting my model S for the same reasons as you. I like that the car is clean and it is definitely a big plus, but I'm also looking forward to the torque, the silence, and what should be pretty interesting handling characteristics. And the tech! And the good looks! I should stop now before I ramble...
     
  13. PeterW

    PeterW Member

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    Too late :)
     
  14. HFh

    HFh Member

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    0-60 in 4.4... and, good heavens, it's electric!

    I'm planning on getting this car because I want a sedan (important for me) that is fun to drive. My original plan was to get an M5 this cycle. I'd been putting off getting rid of my 545i waiting for the M5 to get to the States. My back up plan was a 55oi. Both would be six-speeds of course because, you know, I'm a real man.

    Then I test drove a Fisker and thought to myself that maybe the electrics had come a long way (I'd seen Teslas during my trips to San Fran last year, but thought nothing of them). I started looking into it, got caught up on where the technology is and so right now I'm sold.

    I'll admit that it's a plus that the car is electric--I'm tired of filling up on premium and paying several thousand dollars a mile just to get from here to there--but some of that is because the idea of a fast electric car is tech-head cool. The big downside is the lack of the fun of shifting but I'm okay with that (this will be my first non-stick ever and my first non-6 in 12 years) given everything else about the car. I also kind of wish it had a heads up display (tech-head cool and even useful), but... 0-60 in 4.4.

    So, what I'm saying is that I get a fast car that is luxury enough (I only care about that but so much) with enough legroom for my 6' 3" self and has all kinds of coolness about it? Yeah, let's do that. Now if the Performance wasn't an option, would I buy it? I'd probably wait another generation.
     
  15. AustinPowers

    AustinPowers Total Smeghead

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    My two cents

    Right, my first post.

    I have been fascinated by the Model S ever since I saw the first pictures of the prototype a couple of years ago. And the nearer the year 2013 drew, the more info Tesla released, the more excited I got. But when we finally got to see the page about the features & pricing on the Tesla website, I somehow lost quite a bit of the excitement because, EV tech aside, the S suddenly seemed not at all like "the best car in the world", as Tesla sometimes like to call it, and even the "premium" in the premium (electric) sedan sounds a bit questionable to me.

    Reasons you ask? Well, like evinfairfax I too want a car that is not called "the most technologically advanced vehicle ever produced" just because it is an EV. I currently drive a 2004 BMW 330 Cd Diesel coupe, which I consider (for my needs) the best car I have ever driven. It's powerful, fast, roomier than one might think, and still very economical, giving me between 33 and 39 mpg depending on how much of its power I put to use. And as for techie features it has everything that was available in 2004. So when it comes to the Model S, I think it should at least offer the features that eight year old cars used to offer. But when I read the features page that doesn't seem to be the case. Or perhaps some features that the Model S offers are just not mentioned by Tesla:

    - folding side mirrors? (very sensible on sich a wide car, and standard or optional on many cars of today)
    - front and rear parking assistant (at least in the form of sound signals, standard or optional on most cars)
    - active safety headrests (I think they are talking about making them compulsory in the EU)
    - glove compartment and various other compartments for stowing away stuff (I didn't see any on pictures of the Model S interior)
    - memory function on the adjustable seats for more than just one driver

    and as for the "most technologically advanced" part:
    - LED headlights (xenon as part of the Tech Package is not really something special, at least not in the premium sedan market where xenon is more or less standard)
    - head up display
    - adaptive cruise control

    I'm not even talking about all the possible assistant gizmos.

    And something plain and simple that really annoys me - no CD player. I know I can store all my music on an USB stick, but have you ever converted a hundred CDs or more to files?

    Don't get me wrong. I think the Model S has the possibility to become a great car. I love the looks, the EV aspect and the prospect of driving one of the coolest cars on the planet. But the way it seems at the moment, I think Tesla will have a lot of problems selling the car to people (at least in Europe) - who are willing to spend the kind of cash between 50 and 100K Euro - and not offering many of the advanced tech features that are available (or even have been available for some years) on cars by Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Volkswagen, Porsche, Ford, Jaguar, Volvo, Nissan, even Mazda, Toyota, Hyundai etc.
     
  16. GSP

    GSP Member

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    This nicely sums up my situation as well. I do enjoy hyper-miling the Volt, but I also look forward to a larger battery some day.

    GSP
     
  17. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

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    Your post stands as is, but thought I'd point out that the S is expected to have memory seats tied to your key fob. Also, it's pretty likely we'll have traffic since we have both google maps (which shows traffic on mobile devices) and satellite radio. It's also not a stretch to think the backup cameras will have proximity alerts as well.
     
  18. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

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    Again, I see no reason why this won't be in the car (they have not yet released standard features). The headrests may be part of the seats (though I don't know what active headrests are), and we've already seen the folding mirrors in action and know it will have memory seats.

    I've had SD car slots in every new vehicle I've owned. These days I think most people have their music digitally (I do, even though I still buy CD's unless the MP3 album is on sale at Amazon), so it's a lot easier to load content onto an iPod, phone, USB stick or SD card than it is to carry around and juggle CDs IMO. Heck, apple is even phasing out optical drives on their computers. I think Tesla made a forward-thinking decision.
     
  19. Mycroft

    Mycroft Life happens

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    Several times. Once you get into a rhythm, it goes quickly. Rip to Apple lossless with iTunes and you'll only need to do it once.
     
  20. mnx

    mnx 2013 P85

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    Those are my top 3 reasons as well. I'd consider them EV aspects though, or at least #2 and #3. I'm also going to enjoy never having to stop for gas again. :)
     

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