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Model S has No Soul!

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Struja, Sep 18, 2017.

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  1. Struja

    Struja Member

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    I have been reading this a lot lately and I know this might be a very controversial subject but I wanted to hear some explanations about this idea, that the Model S has no soul.

    So the first thing I want to say as I am relatively new here and an admitted fanboy. For me, there is no better car in the world, and I'm wondering if the "no soul" argument is simply a BS way to push back against innovation.

    I also don't get the "real car guys would never drive an electric" argument.

    I consider myself a "real car guy". Do, I do my own oil changes in my driveway? No, but who gets to define "real car guy"? Why do my hands have to be covered in grease to be a "real car guy"?

    Meaning, if I love a quiet ride, instant torque, technology and innovation, why am I not a "real car guy"? If I marvel at how smooth my Model S is over the herky-jerky transmission of my IS350, does it make me less of a car guy? If I prefer serenity over noise, can I not be a "car guy"?

    As an admitted atheist... I don't believe humans have souls (but that is an entirely different thread) but when I read people (even "experts") saying the Model S has "no soul", what does it mean? What and who gets to define the soul of an inanimate object?

    I remember back with the invention of the CD, music "purists" decried them as a bastardization of sound one could get from a record. Today, most music comes via hard drives and downloads. The notion that the old way was better would largely be ridiculed. I am wondering if the same will be true with electric cars. I kind of see it as inevitable.

    Again, not sure what is meant by "soul" but if it means putting a smile on my face every time I sit down, my Model S has plenty of soul.
     
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  2. Ken7

    Ken7 Member

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    There's a lot of nonsense on some of these threads, I'd just resist taking this 'no soul' crap to heart. What the hell does it mean for a car to have a 'soul'. Does my toaster oven have a soul? How about my washer/dryer? Geesh, unreal.
     
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  3. FutureShock

    FutureShock Member

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    #3 FutureShock, Sep 18, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2017
    I think some ppl just have a hard time accepting change, so they come up with odd rationalizations as to why said change is bad and/or is replacing their comfortable, known past with something inferior and oooh-scary. :rolleyes:

    'Real car guys prefer ICEs' is just another manifestation of it... same as it ever was.

    But wouldn't 'real car guys' love going 0-60 in 2.3 secs via Ludicrous mode? And didn't the argument against EVs used to be that they were 'glorified golf carts'? But that's been blown out of the water, so now it's all about some sort of vague mechanical 'soul'? :confused:

    Yeah, the goalposts keep being moved, but that's actually a good thing. It means EVs are starting to win.

    .
     
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  4. jelloslug

    jelloslug Active Member

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    You get the same tired arguments everytime there is some major automotive breakthrough.
     
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  5. Struja

    Struja Member

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    Brilliant. That was my sort of thinking when we start to ascribe human characteristics to non-living things.
     
  6. jaguar36

    jaguar36 Active Member

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    In general I think its a bunch of nonsense, about people unhappy with change, or from people who are just too invested in another brand. However I do find the driving experience lacking in the S. The lack of engine noise, lack of a clutch pedal, lack of steering feel, and even going so far as autopilot take away from the fun of driving. Of course alot of that stuff is going away in ICEs too (or being faked). There is also alot of times when driving isn't fun regardless of what you're in, and thats when a Tesla is at its best.
     
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  7. 12Pack

    12Pack Member

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    I think this is point of those looking for the "soul" in the Model S - that the Model S is a great appliance, but no more. The very fact that the toaster etc is brought in to make the point - goes to support that thinking. I do love my weekend ICE - trust me - it has soul.

    And my daily driver Model S is building up that soul too - just one of a totally different sort.
     
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  8. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    They mean noise basically. Anything they can tinker with and makes loud noises when you accelerate sounds 'real'. Even if their car is slower, they'll tell you now they don't care.
     
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  9. Struja

    Struja Member

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    I appreciate your thoughts and opinions. I won't suggest for a second that you are wrong, just that your opinions differ from mine and are no more correct (and its not simply because I own an S).

    When I bought my Lexus IS350, it came down to it vs. a 3 Series BMW. Why did I pick the Lexus? It was quieter, smoother, more reliable and felt more comfortable. If I were a "real car guy" I suppose I should have loved that the with the 3 Series you could feel every bump on the road, every pebble and howl through the corners. The handling was stiffer and more responsive. I did understand it... it just wasn't for me.

    So, I guess my point is... I do understand where the argument comes from... its just those things you like in an ICE aren't for me. I don't think that makes me any less of a car guy.

    Maybe it is as simple as there is no monopoly on what constitutes the soul or what makes a car guy.
     
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  10. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    "Soul" and "Heritage" are things which are cultivated by particular motor manufacturing marques.

    Which worked fine until the emissions scandal put the skids under them.

    Now we just have a lot of skid marques.
     
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  11. JonathanD

    JonathanD Member

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    Everybody knows you can't have a soul if you don't smell bad and pollute the atmosphere.
     
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  12. trils0n

    trils0n 2013 P85

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    I spent the last two weekends giving dozens of test rides and drives in my Model S as part of National Drive Electric Week.

    The "no soul / boring" argument was a common thing, especially for those coming from BMW or Porsche. That attitude only lasts until they get behind the wheel. Then they have their 'ah-ha' moment and start getting it. "Wow my Porsche/BMW/Corvette doesn't have 'pick-up' like that!" "It stays really flat in the corners, wow" "The steering feels really good -- it handles so well!" "My friends said I wouldn't like it cuz it would be boring with no sound, but this is a thrill to drive" etc., etc., etc.
     
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  13. calisnow

    calisnow Active Member

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    Love my S also - but, it has no soul. I have a mid 90's Italian car - it has soul. I have owned several BMW E36 M3's - they had soul. But my Japanese cars and my Teslas - no soul, sorry.
     
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  14. JohnnyG

    JohnnyG Weee!

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    I believe a true "real car guy" is someone who has a real passion for cars and can appreciate all aspects of the marvels of the automobile. That in no way means you have to have a taste for each and every iteration. Just that you can feel admiration and respect for all the innovations, milestones, and uniqueness that has gone into the automobile.

    I ran into the same thing with bikes. I, myself, am a track enthusiast. I prefer riding sport bikes, yet I admire all bikes; especially the unique and innovative. That is far from true for the majority of guys out there. It becomes a feud for them. I truly can't wrap my mind around it.

    These feuds are what turn some "real car guys" into the same rude disrespectful people that ruffed their feathers in the first place.

    Interestingly enough (being a pilot), I've never run across this emotional dismay in the aviation community. Again, not every aircraft enthusiast has the same taste, but they do in general all seem to have the same passion, respect, and admiration for different aspects of aircraft.

    The EV (more specifically,Tesla) is just another iteration of innovation. After 40k miles, I still become giddy from the smooth instant acceleration, and the flat cornering at speed. However, I still love taking my fire breathing dragon out, because it gives a totally different kind of giddy experience that I can't get from the Model S. They each have their place in my heart, for totally different reasons.
     
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  15. Azathoth

    Azathoth New Member

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    I'd argue that the ONLY time this made sense was during the transition from horse-drawn carriages to horseless carriages. Horses may have souls, but machines do not :)

    In any case, if you change "soul" to "personality", there's no denying that the Model S has plenty of personality.
     
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  16. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    Having driven a Soul, I can assure you that it's a good thing ;)


    [​IMG]
     
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  17. Uncle Paul

    Uncle Paul Member

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    The connection between a car and driver is enhanced with the noises the vehicle makes.

    A fast car will want to make lots of noises to make the driver feel it is "working hard" and performing well. Kind of like a weight lifter that grunts mightly when lifting a heavy load. The tires will squeel indicating the powertrain is putting tremendous power to them. The intake will swoosh, indicating lots of air is being injected, just as the exhausts will boom, showing how much air is being expelled. Noises will rise and fall with the revs and gears will slam to add to the feeling that lots is getting done and that the vehicle is performing mightily. Lots of show business.

    The Tesla accomplishes these feats of performance without all the drama and bull. It just goes about it's business like it is no big deal.
     
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  18. RogerHScott

    RogerHScott Active Member

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    Every single time my MS needs an oil change you can be sure I'm lying on my back in my driveway doing it myself.
    Same for transmission fluid.
     
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  19. mkspeedr

    mkspeedr Member

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    I am someone who believes in nonsense. All of my vehicles have souls - personalities. I love the differences and the experiences.

    The best example (sorry but it uses motorcycles) is a BMW S1000RR HP4 and a Ducati 1299. I run the same lap time with both bikes. The HP4 is easy to ride, linear power, great suspension - heavy to turn and mechanical in sound. The 1299 is a lot of work (as well as a work of art), it penalizes for mistakes, the sound is thunderous but the experience is more enjoyable.

    My S has a wonderful soul. Quiet - well mannered - quick - unique handling and it does not mask the other sense with an overload of sound.
     
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  20. ThosEM

    ThosEM Space Weatherman

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    Of course the Model S has as much soul as any vehicle. I'm also an atheist, but the concept of soul has meaning to me, best exemplified in the book by Terry Kidder, circa 1982 vintage, "Soul of a New Machine". Since reading that, I associate "soul" with the information that specifies the design of a thing, supporting its reproduction, in that case a microprocessor chip. In the case of a living thing, that design is encoded in DNA that is immortal enough to have been around for billions of years, rather than ephemeral engineering drawings or data files. There's no putting your hands on the design itself, only the real things that embody that design. But a "real car guy" or a "real computer guy" or a "real farmer guy" or a "real physician guy" would have a passion and appreciation for the intricate design aspects of whatever kind of guy or gal he/she is.
     
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