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My Story: 3 kids, a Model S, cancelling my Model X, and a...Volvo?

rogbmw

Member
Feb 10, 2012
838
89
Central Florida
We have an S as my daily car, and had an X on order from the night of the reveal. We soon realized that there are "holes" in the US where we drive regularly that supercharging just does not exist, so we started looking elsewhere. We decided to order an XC90 T8 and cancel our X order. We have had our XC90 T8 since the first of the year. We have had Zero problems or issues. It is primarily the wifemobile. We just took a 900 mile trip, and averaged over 31mpg with an average of 73mph for the trip. I love the S, and do not plan on being without a Tesla, but being all electric did not make sense for us at this time with the current supercharger network. Most of the wife's trips around town are totally on battery, and we have a realistic range of 20 miles. The X is a beautiful machine - but just not for us at the current time.
 

Zaxxon

Supporting Member
Dec 11, 2012
4,662
21,445
Colorado
Interesting thread. We're in a very similar boat to the OP--2 girls vs 3, but otherwise remarkably similar. We canceled our X deposit after the 'Meet the X' event and put a deposit down on an XC90 T8, to arrive late summer. Will hopefully become Tesla owners with the Model 3. In the meantime I wish Tesla luck with the X; it just isn't for us.

To close the circle on my piece of this thread: we picked up our XC90 T8 last night. It was a bit bittersweet as on the one hand we're finally moving up from 'regular' hybrids to a PHEV, and on the other we're not yet in the Tesla family. Still hoping to get there when we replace our next car with (hopefully) a Model 3 (deposited the morning of 3/31). But the XC90 was just a much better fit for us than the X, so here we are.

Thought I'd share a few photos of our new beast.

Averaging a bit over 40 MPG so far, including my wife's trip to work this morning--26 miles, 0.2 gallons of gas.
 
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forumman83

Member
Jun 12, 2015
90
21
Ottawa, Ontario
To close the circle on my piece of this thread: we picked up our XC90 T8 last night. It was a bit bittersweet as on the one hand we're finally moving up from 'regular' hybrids to a PHEV, and on the other we're not yet in the Tesla family. Still hoping to get there when we replace our next car with (hopefully) a Model 3 (deposited the morning of 3/31). But the XC90 was just a much better fit for us than the X, so here we are.

Thought I'd share a few photos of our new beast.

Averaging a bit over 40 MPG so far, including my wife's trip to work this morning--26 miles, 0.2 gallons of gas.

I personally believe that PHEV is a compromise that gives you the worst of both worlds. Just my opinion Congrats on the new vehicle.
 
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calisnow

Banned
Oct 11, 2014
2,867
4,651
Los Angeles
I personally believe that PHEV is a compromise that gives you the worst of both worlds. Just my opinion Congrats on the new vehicle.

"A backhanded compliment, also known as a left-handed compliment or asteism, is an insult that is disguised as a compliment. Sometimes, a backhanded compliment may be inadvertent. However, the term usually connotes an intent to belittle or condescend."

Insult - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
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ABCCBA

Member
Dec 20, 2015
387
234
Somewhere
@forumman83 Yeah, we are so out of touch by driving fully electric for most all of our daily tasks. And even worse, when we go on long road trips, we are burdened by getting to our destination almost 50% sooner than if we drove our Model S and had to Supercharge every 150 to 200 miles. But, to each his own, Ay!

I personally believe that PHEV is a compromise that gives you the worst of both worlds. Just my opinion Congrats on the new vehicle.
 
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roblab

Active Member
Jul 15, 2008
3,457
2,515
Angwin (Napa Valley) CA
We have an S as my daily car, and had an X on order from the night of the reveal. We soon realized that there are "holes" in the US where we drive regularly that supercharging just does not exist, so we started looking elsewhere.

To each, as they say. When we bought our first Tesla, there were no holes. There were no superchargers, anywhere. The word had not been published to Tesla owners. A week after we got our car, we went 300 miles to Nevada. A month after purchase, we went to Canada.

Fast forward. A month ago, my two closest chargers were 45 miles away. This week, a new one opened up 20 miles away. Yeah, we're in California, but, things change, don't they. And, I was NeVeR happy about driving on imported, expensive, polluting fuels. I now own solar, and all of my charging is free.

See, if I lived where you do, I'd probably manage well with the 90D. Just perspective and experience, maybe. I hope you are able to move to pure EV in the future. Good luck!
 

DuplexDianne

Member
Apr 18, 2016
260
102
Austin, TX
Nice breakdown, MiddKid, and totally reasonable. We're replacing our Odyssey with the MX, and only because we want to be an electric household. If I had three kids, or if we were as active outdoors as you guys were, it probably would have been a tougher move.

I believe the MX will become a more versatile vehicle over the next year. I'm guessing your patience will pay off.

Thanks for sharing..
We currently have an Odyssey and a MINI...and three kids under 9. When the grandparents visit, the kids will get the back seats. Thinking we will have little use for the Odyssey...maybe put it into service with Get-Around, lol.
 

MiddKid

Member
Jan 3, 2014
305
257
Seattle
To close the circle on my piece of this thread: we picked up our XC90 T8 last night. It was a bit bittersweet as on the one hand we're finally moving up from 'regular' hybrids to a PHEV, and on the other we're not yet in the Tesla family. Still hoping to get there when we replace our next car with (hopefully) a Model 3 (deposited the morning of 3/31). But the XC90 was just a much better fit for us than the X, so here we are.

Thought I'd share a few photos of our new beast.

Averaging a bit over 40 MPG so far, including my wife's trip to work this morning--26 miles, 0.2 gallons of gas.

Zaxxon,
Congrats on the beautiful R-Design. My wife went with the Inscription. We're already 3K miles in and are loving it. We originally had a T8 on order but long story short landed up with a T6. Still a fantastic vehicle with good mileage.

I mentioned this in another thread but I've found it interesting that recently I've found myself jumping in my wife's XC90 instead of the Model S. Surprised me! Really enjoying the fit/finish and driving experience of the XC90. Part of that is my Model S is going in for it's 37,500 mile service next week and is having a number of significant quality issues. I made the appointment in early June but the first date they gave me was late July...as much as I love Tesla I was worried about the service centers getting overloaded and it's happening quickly.

After camping last weekend in the XC90 and using a Thule 4 bike hitch mount along with a Yakima cargo box and another bike carrier on the roof, zero regrets cancelling the X. The utility is just not there for us. I may still replace the MS down the road with an X but will likely hold out for awhile. The irony is that despite how crazy the set up in the picture looks, with a tow hitch and a roof rack my Model S could have done it!
IMG_4266.JPG
 
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Zaxxon

Supporting Member
Dec 11, 2012
4,662
21,445
Colorado
Wow, that is a full set-up you have there.

And I can report that Tesla has no monopoly on initial quality problems--our T8 is already in for service to resolve inconsistent charging (sometimes it charges, other times it thinks it's unplugged when it's not). Fun times. Hopefully it's a short visit. I had to chuckle when it happened, as when we were in line for the X I had mentally marked off a week or two of service to be required for initial quality issues, then thought perhaps with the Volvo I'd escape early service. No dice.

On the other hand, the car is fantastic even without the PHEV portion functioning--averaged about 31 MPG in the 300 miles we drove prior to dropping it back off, with one 18-mile charge in there.
 

AnxietyRanger

Well-Known Member
Aug 22, 2014
9,408
7,402
EU
I personally believe that PHEV is a compromise that gives you the worst of both worlds. Just my opinion Congrats on the new vehicle.

I used to think like that, too, buying into Tesla a couple of years ago. It is, in a way, true of course: a hybrid system is a needlessly complicated exercise. In theory at least the Tesla skateboard is probably the most beautiful drive-train in existence, which has resulted in other practical advancements especially in the Model S (frunk/trunk/interior space). In comparison, a hybrid is basically a poor EV and an impure ICE experience. An inconsistent driving feel with a complicated maintenance future. And we know the motivations of the mainstream manufacturers for making these things are equally bad. If only the industry had evolved better and faster, yes.

That said, I've come around to see this differently from the user/driver perspective. The sad fact is: The available choices of an EV are limited both in number as well as in functionality - as are the driving realities for many regions. Sure, in theory many (wealthier) people could now go all EV: one can buy a Model S, a Model X that fulfill many requirements. It is not like this is completely impossible to operate them either by now, if there is a will, there is often a way. But it, too, in return can be a complicated exercise, just of a different sort.

Today, to go all EV, one has to compromise because basically one can only buy a Tesla or a much more limited other EV. This means limitations e.g. in convenience features, maintenance network, space to carry people and things (especially given the compromises Model X launched with). As well as the EV limitations of range (compared to an ICE or a PHEV), speed of replenishing "fuel" etc. All those things. Tesla has done remarkably well for a car start-up and showed the world what an EV can do, but still they sell a compromise of their own kind.

Now, contrast this with adding PHEV choices to the mix. A much vaster real-life array of car choices means likely being able to fulfill much more of those varied personal requirements (space, style, features). Less compromises there, because there is so much more choice. Yet, while not having to compromise on the possibility of commuting on electricity (to drive down operating cost/pollution/noise, enjoy a smoother/more relaxing ride) on a daily basis - if one's daily destination is suitably located within the range. For this, one certainly has to give up commuting performance and perhaps the consistent ICE-age thrill of driving the thing, but these other benefits are there to offset these limitations.

In an ideal world, we wouldn't need the PHEV. But the reality is, buying a car is a compromise - and the best compromise depends on very personal circumstances. I've come to see PHEV as a useful option for the buyer (even if it is the result of an industry malaise), instead of the abomination that it certainly in a theoretical sense is. And I say this as someone driving a Model S and a Model X on order. I expect this to remain so until the EV lineups and charging networks have been greatly expanded.

To each, as they say. When we bought our first Tesla, there were no holes. There were no superchargers, anywhere. The word had not been published to Tesla owners. A week after we got our car, we went 300 miles to Nevada. A month after purchase, we went to Canada.

Fast forward. A month ago, my two closest chargers were 45 miles away. This week, a new one opened up 20 miles away. Yeah, we're in California, but, things change, don't they. And, I was NeVeR happy about driving on imported, expensive, polluting fuels. I now own solar, and all of my charging is free.

See, if I lived where you do, I'd probably manage well with the 90D. Just perspective and experience, maybe. I hope you are able to move to pure EV in the future. Good luck!

This was true for my region and my car purchases as well (timeline/region adjusted). When I started in my region, there were no Superchargers anywhere in the range of the car, no Tesla shops or maintenance either - and a very limited number of Tesla compatible public charging anyway. It was arguably much worse than in California when Model S started out, maybe even worse than when Roadster started out for a time. A couple of years later, the Supercharger network, the non-Tesla charging network and the addition of the CHAdeMO adapter have resulted in a massive practical range extension. I can even drive the thing to a Tesla SC now, which appeared out of nowhere. Yeah, things change.

And sure, I survived in the first year+. Luckily the car didn't break down and the few very hairy moments regarding destination charging were solved with some luck - and could have been better avoided with better planning. My daily commute is easily charged at home even on a slow plug (no HPWC available where I live) and the Tesla battery meant this wasn't even needed daily. My hauling needs are modest, so the massive space-champ for its form-factor Model S managed great. I was forfeiting some convenience and safety features not available at the time of the purchase (and some not even today), but otherwise OK. A few trips were relegated to an ICE due to schedule needs. I am lucky that the charging network is especially growing where I live and move around mostly, not all are equally blessed yet.

So, whilst I agree it comes down to perspective and experience, I would also add it comes down to motivation and requirements - and these can start muddying up the question of the relevancy of the beauty of that drive-train or purity of a gas-less existence real fast. With strong inherent motivation, like you clearly had when you started and when I, in my own time and place, started, operating an EV is certainly often possible and that drive-train rewarding. Especially if one doesn't have requirements diametrically opposed to this plan, e.g. need for massive hauling of stuff and people or e.g. need to drive/refill fast on constant long-range trips due to schedule.

But what if you do have those opposing requirements - or a different set of motivations? In the end, "you *can* do it" is not a very enticing argument for buying a thing where you perhaps spend the third most time after home and work. No amount of experience is going to change the fact that EVs, as they currently stand, are sub-optimal solutions for those who need/want to carry a tons of stuff and people - and/or need/want to travel far and fast (and with minimal planning/preparation) - and/or need/want the latest set of on-board convenience features and amenities.

Getting a pure EV or a pure ICE may offer the best choices for a driving fanatic - and especially the latter offers hugely more choice for fulfilling other personal requirements. Getting an EV can offer great rewards from someone investing in solar, zero emissions, another kind of trill of driving etc. They do. But in between there are those who just want and need to move around with convenience and within subjective requirements that overlap both of these worlds, who may not e.g. live in sunny states (not just lesser solar potential, winter cuts into that range badly too) - and they may find those needs and wishes converging even on a PHEV at the moment.

There is a reason why the Volvo XC90 T8 is so oft-spoken on the Model X forums. It does lots of things better than any of the Teslas (let alone other EVs) and still does the one thing the EVs do (and ICEs don't) adequately for many. Sadly, some of that was simply a missed opportunity on Teslas part. If Tesla can solve the folding second row and offer a real roof-box workaround eventually on the Model X, some of these people will come around - same as the charging and service network expands. But today we're not there yet.
 
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Zaxxon

Supporting Member
Dec 11, 2012
4,662
21,445
Colorado
Well said, AR. Folks need to stop taking it as an insult when someone chooses something other than a Tesla.

In our case, the T8 got us to a point where many/most of our day-to-day miles are now all-EV, and with the leftover cash that would have gone to a compromised (for us) X experience, we have half of our Model 3 paid for.
 

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