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My initial thoughts/feedback on my 40/60kwh Model S

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Ting Louie, Jun 14, 2013.

  1. Ting Louie

    Ting Louie Member

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    Disclaimer: other Tesla owners please don't get too defensive, there are tons of good things about the car and its a great "first-attempt" at a new concept, but this is my feedback focusing mainly on the negatives and what I would change, its been almost a week/500 miles with the Tesla, here are my initial thoughts;

    A) Its a good car, decently well made with some cool features, but its not a revolutionary car....its not like flying a jet or piloting a rocketship, unlike what some owners, reviewers etc have said, its not "on a different planet"

    B) It is quick, but its not "super-fast" (note I have the lowly 60kwh version, so yes a P85 version might be a little faster...I have driven P85s before are they are slightly faster, but not in a different league.) The car is very quick 0-40/50 mph (thanks to the electric motors), but my AMG Mercedes was a freight train from 60-120....and the Tesla isn't anywhere close to the same league as a ~600hp Mercedes silver bullet.

    What I think makes people say this a "game-changing" or "on a totally different planet" is because most of these "green" car people are coming from really lame-ass cars like a Leaf or Prius. I have spent seat time in those cars and they make me want to cry...so yes compared to a Leaf or Prius etc, this might be "on a different level." But compared to my Nissan GTR...its quick, not mind-blowing fast

    C) The Tesla is definitely premium priced, most Tesla Model S are between $75-110k...which is the same price as Mercedes E/S/CLS, Audi A6/7/8, BMW 5/7 series. But it lacks some of the optional features of those cars. My Mercedes CLS had heated/cooled/massaging/multi-contour/dynamic seats, where as my Tesla has just lumbar support and heated seats, nothing else available.

    I would expect Tesla to have better seat options available. Yes I understand they probably wanted to save money/weight, but nowadays even $25k VW Jettas have heated seats with lumbar support, I expect a bit more from a high-5 to low-6 figure car, which brings me to:

    D) What the Tesla is missing / i would change

    1. center console, Tesla realized this quickly and will be releasing a center console this summer

    2. better front cup holders, the two front cup holders are in the center armrest so you can either carry drinks or rest your arm, but not both

    3. rear cup holders, since Tesla did such a good job with the flat floor and being able to seat three adults, now those three adults might want to store their water bottles somewhere

    4. rear folding armrest, most every sedan has a rear arm rest for when only two people are sitting in back...not in the Tesla. I don't know if they were trying to save weight or be cheap and not build it, but the Tesla lacks it

    5. seat back pockets... useful for families to put stuff, and can't cost that much, but the Tesla lacks these too

    6. the LATCH anchors in the car suck, they are hard to find and the one on the backs of the rear seats are hidden in a cut slit in the carpet. This is how the first LATCH anchors were in the late 90s... high end modern cars like Mercedes and Lexus have easily accessible LATCH anchors where you don't have to dig in-between the seat cushions and the rear anchors are in surrounds with covers, not cheap ass carpet slits. I think Tesla was just being lazy/cheap here too

    7. door pockets, seriously Tesla...was this an oversight? or just being cheap to save on production costs? but the inner door liners are super wide, there has to be room for some door pockets in there

    8. the regenerative braking is cool, standard mod is pretty aggressive, so much so that you don't need to brake much around town, just coast up to the stop. But on the freeway standard regen is too aggressive (so much so that my wife thought I was braking b/c I saw cops) so I switch it to low-regen mode. Constantly switching it to low-regen is a PITA, it would be nice to have a function where I can set it to low-regen automatically above a certain speed. A software upgrade would address this.

    9. my Tesla has air suspension, so I have the option of low, standard, high and extra high settings for the ride height. Since Tesla went to the trouble making this, then why not offer me the choice of sport, auto and comfort suspension settings? My VW Touareg and AMG Mercedes had this, seems like a software change could take care of it.

    10. Some of the options are absurdly priced: $3500 up-charge for 21" wheels? adding that to the cost of the OEM 19's (lets say $2000-2500) is easily in the territory of HREs etc. Maybe a "plus one" 20" wheel package for $1500-2000 extra would be a good option. Instead I got standard 19's and will probably put aftermarket 20's on. Performance Plus Package for $6500 extra which just included uprated suspension, different tires etc?

    11. the front seats need more bolstering, you can't make claims about your low center of gravity and flat cornering and include such pedestrian seats, how about a "sport seat" option with bigger bolsters and adjustable thigh support a la BMW

    12. It would be really nice to have an adjustable headrest on the front seats, if not the rear. because the front seat-backs are one-piece, not unlike a race seat, you can't mount rear seat entertainment stuff (iPad mounts) or those kick-pads to prevent kids from kicking and scuffing up the seat backs.

    13. Again the interior lacks many standard features, like grab handles for the front and rear passengers or coat hooks in case you might want to hang your dry cleaning....either an oversight or Tesla being cheap

    14. Like other electronic laden cars, there will be bugs, on the first day my "tire pressure sensor" warning came up, only to disappear and never reappear again.

    15. while the little nav screen in the dash does "flyover/birds eye" view facing the direction of travel, the main NAV screen only does pointed north (which I hate)... i would prefer the option of selection the main NAV view...just like most other car NAV systems allow

    16. roll back / forward .... the Tesla will roll back / forward if you are on a slope and not applying gas (power? i guess in this car since there is no "gas").... Seriously? Tesla couldn't / didn't think there needed to be a "hill-hold function?"

    Again don't get me wrong, I think its a good car, but there are a bunch of factors and features that Tesla missed that would turn it from a good car into a great car. I think some of these might have been left off in the name of "design" and "lightness" but others were left off in the sake of cost savings or just a straight oversight.

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    I don't own any "green" cars like a Leaf, Volt, Prius etc.... I have spent alot of time driving those cars (my sister has a Prius) and driving those nearly make me cry :-(

    We used to own a Jetta TDI, not a bad car for 45 mpg freeway, and now have a X5 35D (amazing that a sporty SUV can do 25-27mpg) but that's as close as I was to "green" cars prior to my Model S
     
  2. steve841

    steve841 Active Member

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    Curious to know why you'd opt for a 40/60 kw over an 85?

    Your comparisons would imply money is not an issue. Does not make sense to me.

    By and large I don't have much argument with your assessment.
     
  3. DaveT

    DaveT Searcher of green pastures

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    Based on your cars ("Tesla Model S 40/60, Nissan GTR, Mercedes SL55 AMG (Eurocharged), BMW X5 35D, Mercedes CLS55 AMG (Eurocharged 600hp), Ferrari 360 Modena"), maybe you should have gotten a P85+.
     
  4. Ting Louie

    Ting Louie Member

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    #4 Ting Louie, Jun 14, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2013
    I don't see what "does not make sense" ...because I don't need/want an 85...this car is an efficient daily driver for me and it accomplishes that

    My daily commute is 40 miles, 100 miles in a day covers 98% of my driving situations... if we are going to our house in Lake Tahoe, i'm going to drive our X5 diesel with a 600 mile/tank range... the $30k i saved over a 85kwh allows me to have other toys... I have no issues with the range or speed for the most part

    If I want to go for a "spirited / fast" drive in the hills, i'll take a real sports car...



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    DaveT, based on my other cars, I have no need for a P85+, the Model S is my daily driver / commuter....same reason I have a X5 Diesel and not a ///M X5 with 550hp...

     
  5. steve841

    steve841 Active Member

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    Then your B is not a fair statement. It would be analogous to choosing a 4cyl over a V8 and then say its not that fast when you had the choice and funds to choose the faster model. That's what doesn't make sense.
     
  6. Ting Louie

    Ting Louie Member

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    I have spent quite a bit of seat time in P85s as two friends own them.... and no the P85 does not pull 60-120mph like my Eurocharged tuned AMG Mercedes or my GTR

    All Teslas are super quick 0-40/50 mph..... quicker than my AMG Mercedes...but have you ever launched a 650 hp Nissan GTR?


     
  7. qwk

    qwk Model S P2681

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    You are comparing apples with oranges. Of course a stock Model S isn't going to pull as hard as a modified turbo car, duh. A stock GTR is super lame though, so I hope you weren't comparing that to a P85. Comparing a $50k 40kwh Model S to the cars you mentioned is absurd, as that is a base model, ie usually the lamest the manufacturer has to offer.
     
  8. fastcars

    fastcars Member

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    Agree, with #C my $25k car has heated seat with lumbar support.

    He has mention many times that he has not found any difference or big one between his model and P85 (his friends car).

    I know many people on this forum and elsewhere are blind sided by EV and bashing ICE care overnight. It is best in his class with EV at heart (quite ride is a big plus), but other cars have (drove Nissan GTR) positive side.

    I think tesla will improve in next iteration of the model s or x with more options if they can improve on battery technology.
     
  9. DaveT

    DaveT Searcher of green pastures

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    I think all the interior complaints have merit. I remember Elon saying that they underestimated the complexities of interior trim and have since beefed up on the interior engineering team. I think you'll see improvement over the next few years.

    If you want pull from 60-120mph then there are probably better cars like you mentioned. But it's still confusing why you would care about 60-120mph pull when you said you're using your Model S as a daily driver and you've got other cars to act as sports cars.
     
  10. spleen

    spleen Active Member

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    I don't think that anybody would disagree that there are points to the interior that could be improved. Lack of door pockets, improved sun visors, improved sun visor mirrors, coat hangers, improved seat bolsters, rear cup holders, improved front cup holders, rear seat armrests, front seat back pockets, venting to the 3rd row, sun shade for the pano roof, and center console have all been brought up from time to time in these forums. I think as time goes on, Elon and the team will iterate and the interior will improve. Hopefully some of those improvement will be able to be retrofitted.

    But I also agree with DaveT's point about comparison with appropriate vehicles. Most daily commuter vehicles (such as the Leaf, Volt, Prius, etc. that you put down) don't need great 60-120 mph pull. Seems a strange point to make.

    Hope otherwise the positives outweigh the negatives for you.
     
  11. deonb

    deonb Active Member

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    #11 deonb, Jun 14, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2013
    You interior complaints are very valid.

    As for:
    8. the regenerative braking is cool, standard mod is pretty aggressive, so much so that you don't need to brake much around town, just coast up to the stop. But on the freeway standard regen is too aggressive (so much so that my wife thought I was braking b/c I saw cops) so I switch it to low-regen mode.

    I think you'll get used to this one and naturally compensate based on how you use the accelerator. I used to feel the way you do for about a month. Then it was just perfect. Now I want regen two or three times as strong - even for freeway driving. I don't ever want to use the break paddle - it takes away that super-responsive two-way interaction you have with the car.


    Please do however report back 6 months from now though and tell us how you feel about taking your other cars to a gas station.
     
  12. justaddsun

    justaddsun Member

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    I think you've summed up your needs nicely here and you got the right car for fulfilling those needs in a very fun way. Over time as you drive this simple car more, you might get it more.
     
  13. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    That's what some of the initial review sounds like to me.

    That said, happy to hear the feedback regardless.
     
  14. kendallpb

    kendallpb Model S: P 8061

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    I came from a Mazda Miata (plenty peppy), not a pokey hybrid, but still think the Model S is wicked fast. So does everyone I take on a test drive, when I punch it, and one of them was a car guy who, like me, likes fast/quick acceleration. I do have an 85, though (not P). And it's all in what you're used to/comparing it to.

    Massaging seats in a car?!

    I like the open space, but agree the cup holders are not great. I prefer bottles in cars anyway, so the bottle can rest in the open space, for me. I don't push the armrests forward, though. Maybe it's 'cuz I'm short, or just weird, but I find it comfortable to rest my elbow on the cup holder. I like the armrest in the door a lot (no one ever comments on that)!

    Auto-changing regen based on speed is an interesting idea, but there's no hard line of "this speed is city streets, this speed is highway." I believe people think/act differently in different environments, but the speed they wind up on in one area or another may vary. I fear doing what you suggest would make a confusing, inconsistent, and perhaps dangerous driving experience. An easier toggle, though, might be nice for some folks.

    I'll never understand hill-hold. IMHO that's the brake (or parking brake in some cases). But have you tried creep? (Ick. ;-) ) I'm coming from a stick shift and the Model S is perfect for me, but different strokes, etc.

    I don't have any issues with your comments, but don't care about most of the things you don't like or feel are lacking. But most of it's just personal taste. (shrug) I mostly like the interior a lot, for example, but clearly there're a bunch who find it lacking.

    Anyway, welcome to the club and enjoy your car!
     
  15. Ting Louie

    Ting Louie Member

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    A stock GTR is only the 4th or 5th quickest car you can buy in the US....far from "lame"

    My comparison is valid b/c MY last daily driver was my tuned CLS55 AMG, not a Leaf or Prius, and yes I would it to 120+ almost dailym

    I've driven P85s a fair bit and they are a little bit faster than my lowly car....but they still aren't as fast at freeway speeds as other similarly priced ICE cars


    These are my thoughts take it or leave it, it's a very good car, I bought one and will be keeping it awhile


     
  16. twinklejet

    twinklejet Member

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    #16 twinklejet, Jun 14, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013
    They really need to hasten lacking creature comforts for owners jumping from other premium cars.

    1) 4 zone climate control
    2) massaging seats (VW etc.)
    3) cooling seats with perforated leather (BMW, Mercedes, etc.)
    4) radar cruise control
    4b) automatic collision avoidance at all speeds (Volvo etc.)
    5) front and rear parking sensors
    6) front camera (BMW etc.)
    7) electric folding mirrors
    8) dedicated sunglass holders
    9) seat position synchronisation (Audi etc.)
    10) video available when not in motion (BMW etc.)
    11) seat back entertainment
    11b) blu ray player, etc.
    12) cooler/fridge compartment (Rolls etc.)
    13) first aid kit
    14) television signal reception
    15) lane departure warning
    16) automatic self-parking (Ford, Toyota, etc.)
    17) hill-hold function
    18) valet mode
    18b) valet key
    19) user configurable speed limiter
    20) air conditioning vents for third row
    21) entertainment for third row
    22) mirror/video camera for driver to view third row
    23) large dedicated solid state hard drive to cache maps/route/other network based data in case car drives out of reception range / loses connection midway through a drive
    24) one-touch tesla connect button a la "OnStar" (GM)
    25) illuminated "T" on hood (mercedes)
    26) blackout screens on all side and back windows (Audi A8 etc.)
    26b) automate such blackout screens / sun screens
    27) Heads Up Display (HUD)
    28) Bare Minimum Light/Night Panel (SAAB)

    etc.........

    There should be a sticky thread with everything that owners are requesting for in their Model S..
     
  17. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    In defense of hill-hold...

    I don't like my vehicle rolling backwards ... when in Drive. I also don't like it rolling forwards without the accelerator pressed. As such, I like Hill Hold (as I envision it) but don't want Creep. To each his/her own, of course.
     
  18. cwerdna

    cwerdna Active Member

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    #18 cwerdna, Jun 15, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013
    FWIW, some of the stuff you listed isn't limited to just European automakers or premium/luxury cars. I've experienced massaging seats on Lexuses and even the Hyundai Equus (Equus by Hyundai | Review 2013 Specs, Features & Prices | Hyundai). I won a test drive of a Lexus HS hybrid (now defunct) and it had heated and cooled seats.

    As for radar cruise control and lane departure warning, you have been able to get those on the 2010+ Prius. As for self-parking, you could get that on the 2010-2011 Prius, until they removed it as a choice on the '12+ models. As for hill-hold, there's a hill start assist on all 2010+ Priuses and I believe all members of the Prius family, including the lowly just under $20K (to start with) Prius c (2012 Prius c: Hill Start Assist Control - YouTube).

    For front camera, I've also experienced it on the Hyundai Equus (Hyundai Equus: Discover for yourself what luxury now is | Hyundai). It was available on the Lexus HS. It's also available on the Nissan Leaf and Versa Note (sub $20K SV with SL Tech Package). It's called Around View Monitor by Nissan.

    As for #12, although not a common feature amongst cheaper cars, the lowly Dodge Caliber had one. I also recall a friend's Toyota Van (Toyota MasterAce - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) had it, predecessor to the Previa.

    Ford also has an option on the C-Max and Escape where if you have the key on you, you can open and close the liftgate by waving your foot under the rear bumper: Foot-Activated Liftgate C-MAX and Escape │Ford How-To Video - YouTube.

    I thik another item would be a heads up display (HUD). US Prius has had that as an option since model year 2012 (was available with 2010+ models in some other countries), but many other cars from other automakers have offered it for awhile, some on non-luxury cars.
     
  19. twinklejet

    twinklejet Member

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    Yep I simply put whichever brand came to mind first as an example.. but I did write "etc." for everyone else...

    And yep should have added HUD as well.. Missed that one out! Edited!
     
  20. SteveW25561

    SteveW25561 Member

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    Does anyone think hill hold could be added as a software update? I understand creep was added after owners missed it coming from automatic cars.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
     

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