TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

Model X mule - Looking closely at the nose 08/2015

Discussion in 'Model X' started by AnxietyRanger, Aug 15, 2015.

  1. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    Usual disclaimer: Analysis of Model X mule photos is not representative of production vehicles - just analysis of the mules. Production vehicles may vary dramatically.

    Plenty has been made of the Model X nose, widely assumed to be the most camouflaged and potentially most non-final exterior part of the Model X mules. I think even those who think the mules represent fairly final-looking vehicles, believe the nose will still change - at least with plenty of trim missing and/or camo there.

    While it is true the mules thus probably won't tell us all that much about the production nose of Model X, it is still fun to see what can be discerned from the mule sightings. Recently FlatSix911 contributed a couple of fine close-up shots of the Model X mule, the nose and front tire included.

    Big thanks to FlatSix911!

    Here are the original frontal shots for reference:

    attachment.php?attachmentid=90130&d=1439270930.jpg

    attachment.php?attachmentid=90498&d=1439528317.jpg

    So, three areas that interest us here, I think: the lights, the nosecone and the tires. I will look at each one of these in close detail in this post.

    1) The lights:

    To set the scene, ratsbew posted an interesting thread of Rumor: Model X will have full LED headlights, which Twiddler complemented with a Model S mule photo, regarding LED headlights in Model X. Since the mules have all had the corners of their headlights taped over, presumably to hide the LED daylight strip design, we can not get full appreciation of the lights the mules may be running, but in the FlatSix911 photos we finally see some of what is seen below.

    There is also a video, LED Headlight Tesla Model S Test Mule, of the Model S mule LED headlights.

    Here is a blow-up compared to the Model S regular lights (top) and Model S LED (bottom) headlights mule images - unfortunately the quality of the mule shot is still not enough to IMO call this one, could swing either way:

    model_x_nose_close_1.jpg

    Now, there is one thing to add concerning LED headlights on the mule(s), the night-time video of Model X on Tesla's track. The headlights and the foglights look very white, in line with what one would expect from LEDs, but I guess also from Xenons - hard to say. What is interesting is the driver's side foglight looking orange. Is Tesla testing multiple different light temperatures/solutions/options/fixtures? Or could they even be testing intelligent LED lighting patterns that are generated based on driving situation (like the Germans already do)? A more yellow light temperature is sometimes recommended for fogs.

    model_x_nose_close_2.jpg

    Threads:
    Rumor: Model X will have full LED headlights
    Next-Gen Headlights spotted... [UPDATED] Yep they are Tesla and not aftermarket! | Forums | Tesla Motors

    2) The nosecone:

    We of course have rumors saying that the Model X nosecone would be "gone" or bodycolored. What has made judging this, on the mules, hard has been the camo wrap and potentially other camouflage on the nose. However, on closer inspection, it seems the nosecone on this particular mule is not taped over like some of the lower portion of the nose is, but may actually show the bumper/nosecone. It seems as if the nosecone is part of the front bumper and painted to match. Only the vent under the nosecone seems covered in tape or wrap of some sort - and of course there is a large "vent" (perhaps missing the Tesla T logo strip) above the nosecone. We also get a better than ever glimpse inside the "vent", showing an opening in the middle but not on sides.

    model_x_nose_close_3.jpg

    In the concept thread, I posted this design of what this mule nose could look like without that camo and with trim in place:

    attachment.php?attachmentid=84625&d=1434709010.jpg

    Here is a quick attempt to illustrate the same change on this particular mule shot, with LED headlights superimposed:

    model_x_nose_close_4.jpg

    It is also true the front bumper, lights and hood don't quite match up. We can see a wire being run from the top edge of the bumper underneath, that may be twisting the entire bumper forwards, but it may also be the bumper, light fixtures and/or even dash is a non-final part and its design may still change for production.

    Threads:
    Model X mules - is the nose cone gone?
    How has Model X nose changed since 2012 - and has it changed in 2015 mules?
    [Concept] Model X image without nose-cone and A pillar cross-beam

    3) The tires:

    There are far more knowledgeable people discussing Model X tires on TMC than myself, but just to note here the FlatSix911 photographs are probably the first time we get a good look at the size markings of the Model X mule tires. The concensus seems to be they are either 245/45 R 20 or 265/45 R 20.

    Looking very closely, I'm leaning on 265/45 R 20 and have included a blow-up below:

    model_x_nose_close_5.jpg

    Thread: How has Model X nose changed since 2012 - and has it changed in 2015 mules?
     
  2. tinm

    tinm 2013 S85 Owner

    Joined:
    May 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,136
    Location:
    New Mexico, USA
    Please oh please oh please.

    Whoever is taking these photos, and whoever happens upon an X in the wild and chooses to take more photos: get out of your vehicle, take many photos, and please WALK AROUND THE X, and keep taking more photos. Take hundreds. Stand in front of the damn thing and take head-on photos.

    I'm amazed at the obsessive interest in the nose of the X, but nobody has taken PICTURES of the nose of the X :)

    It makes me sometimes wonder if this whole thing isn't an orchestrated tease by Tesla Motors' marketing team :)

    So remember: if you see an X, and it's parked, do the entire TMC community a good deed and take photos from all angles. This message brought to you by Concerned Citizens For 360-Degrees Of Model X Photography.
     
  3. Trev Page

    Trev Page Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Messages:
    576
    Location:
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
    All things being equal, the simplest answer is usually the correct one:

    1. Model S sporting LED headlights and Tesla taping over Model X production candidate headlights is indicative of new LED headlights making it to production.
    2. The separate nose cone is gone. The new front bumper is body coloured and has a hint of the old nosecone design moulded into it.
    3. Both of these design changes will the rolled out to Model S soon.
     
  4. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    tinm: It is true there is a scarcity of Model X mule frontal photos. One reason is that many are photographed in traffic where rear is easier to record and front is usually recorded, if at all, in lower resolution video. I would welcome more high-resolution frontal shots of the mules for sure.

    Trev Page: Plausible and reasonable conclusions. Thank you for posting them.
     
  5. timf

    timf Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2013
    Messages:
    900
    Location:
    Michigan
    It looks like it's picking up the amber side marker lights, which are part of the fog/cornering light assembly. The distance and quality of the photo makes the lights appear to blend together.
     
  6. Fiver

    Fiver Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2015
    Messages:
    662
    Location:
    Utah
    Powerlift frunk? Or due to laws a power latch frunk? Or finally just a front hood that doesn't dent easily when closed?
     
  7. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    LED lights being fairly directional, your theory of them being captured "lopsidedly" on camera seems plausible too. Good point.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Interesting theory. Those pin-looking things on the corners of the bonnet being the mechanism that pushes it up?
     
  8. cgiGuy

    cgiGuy Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2013
    Messages:
    983
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA
    This needed its own thread? Aren't there already 12 others discussing the X mules?
     
  9. CmdrThor

    CmdrThor Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2013
    Messages:
    860
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    AnxietyRanger only gets paid by the thread, not per post.
     
  10. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    You guys. I love you too. :)
     
  11. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    To entertain this rumor - what if the camoed "vent" underneath the "nosecone" (molded into bumper perhaps) isn't a vent but missing some trim where a license plate holder might attach and which could be removable to attach towing hook etc.

    Here's a quick Photoshop of the idea, compared to the vent version below:

    model_x_nose_close_6.jpg
    attachment.php?attachmentid=90612&d=1439654698.jpg
     
  12. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    Of course it is also possible the plate (especially given U.S. plates are tall) would go all the way up to that flatter area of the "nosecone", so somewhat up from where I drew it.
     
  13. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    #13 AnxietyRanger, Aug 18, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2015
    With the latest sighting (quoted below) I find it less likely there is a vent beneath the nosecone, perhaps there is a mini-cone there instead or other trim not yet in place on the previous mules... Perhaps something to cover the towing hook etc. Otherwise I would not expect the "vent" continue being covered in mules. So perhaps there is some trim there merely missing on the earlier mules.

    Model X Mule Sightings - Page 233

     
  14. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    Tesla T seems to be present both front and back of the latest Model X sighting:

    model_x_t.jpg

    Perhaps similar to this on the front, but the T and the T strip trim is more prominent and more flush with the bumper-moulded nosecone or separate nosecone, whichever it is... maybe the "T strip" is a chrome trim that sits "over" the nosecone area, which itself is bumper colored?

    attachment.php?attachmentid=90677&d=1439715020.jpg
     
  15. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2011
    Messages:
    13,257
    Location:
    Sarasota, FL
    For the love of God man, stop posting the darned picture! It now appears 6 times (dang it 7!) on this page already. I'm sure you love your own work but is it really necessary to endlessly quote yourself?. :)
     
  16. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    Hey, it's two different images... ;)

    Probably too much, agreed when seen on a page like that, but it was my shorthand for not having to explain what I mean in the message. It looks different when composing merely the single message. :)
     
  17. Blurry_Eyed

    Blurry_Eyed MS Sig #267, MX Sig # 761

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    562
    Here is a thought. What if the nosecone is attached to the hood? On the Model S we know that the hood is a weak area where there were problems with creasing. It might make sense for tesla to attach the nosecone as a reinforcement for the hood. Also it might open up some space or some other function to have the nosecone lift up off the front rather than be attached.

    Or it might just be the section that AnxietyRanger is speculating about it the reinforcement piece and is the only part that will lift off with the hood.

    No more need for special instructions in closing the hood with two hands!
     
  18. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    It actually crossed my mind that the T logo in front could be a way to open the frunk, but interesting idea that the whole piece might be attached to the bonnet. Why not?

    By the way, interesting to note how little the Model X mules have actually changed - here is the first Model X mule sighting (or plant) after the harbor video in early 2015... compared to the almost latest Model X mule sighting (before the production-painted looking one). Aside from the terribly botched white mule around March, none of the mules actually look very much like frankenmonsters at all. They're quite consistently remaining nearly the same.

    model_x_mule_changes.jpg
     
  19. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    2,244
    Location:
    EU
    An interesting new sighting of a Model X mule nose, showing the bumper design quite clearly - assuming the design seen on this mule is relevant to production speculation, of course.

    As for the rest of the video, rear-view mirror is there on the video, but no checkered shirt. Also an interesting spoiler update.

    New Tesla SUV X 3 driving - YouTube

    model_x_mule_august_nose.jpg
     
  20. vandacca

    vandacca Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2014
    Messages:
    1,961
    Location:
    Hamilton
    Not only was there no checkers or plaid, but it was a woman driving. I wonder if that was Bonnie? ;-)
     

Share This Page