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One month review and some pics

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Redtsla, Sep 29, 2015.

  1. Redtsla

    Redtsla New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2015
    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Tampa
    It’s been almost a month that I took delivery of my red 70D. It’s an exceptional car and exceeds all my expectations. I am kicking myself for not jumping into it a lot earlier. So to all those folks waiting, do take the plunge and you will not regret it one bit.
    This is the costliest car I have ever owned. My previous one was a BMW 3 series hardtop convertible which I had purchased pre-owned for around 30K. That time I felt it was the maximum I would pay for a car. Prior to the Beamer I have owned a Camry and Civic. Well Tesla proved me wrong as I spent way over what I ever thought I would. What made me take this course of action? I have listed few factors that galvanized my thought. Some of it might be useful for people that are on the sidelines

    What kind of person are you?

    Do you like cars or do think of them as tools from getting from point A to B? Do you consider yourself an early adopter in the technology space or do you wait for a technology to be picked up by the masses? Are you technologically challenged or can you figure things out with minimal assistance? Are you concerned with environment, climate change, global warming etc.? You responses to these questions will determine if this car is for you or not.

    How much do you know about the car?

    I have to admit for the last one year I was voraciously reading everything about the car. I visited the forums almost everyday, read every bit of news on the net and had google alerts set for Tesla. When I got the car I knew almost everything that I can expect from it. So please do research before buying, more so this time because it’s not a traditional car and requires some degree of unlearning and learning. Exhaustive research will help you avoid surprises and heartburn after you have plunked the money. After all it’s a large sum and ensure you do your research thoroughly. There are great folks on this forum and videos on youtube that I have learnt so much over the last year.

    Decide things that are absolutely important to you?

    Is acceleration and driving dynamics more important than range? Are you a music connoisseur with a discerning ear for quality sound? Is your driveway too steep and you always scrape your bumpers? Do you want to be seated in a luxury cocoon with all amenities like S class? You cannot live with the center tray alone and absolutely need cupholders? Do you despise large cars and have issues parking in tight spots? Do you absolutely want towing? Answering questions like these will help decide if the car has features on your must have list. It will also help you option the car exactly to your requirements. The design studio is a great place to configure. I have lost count the number of times I configured and re-configured my car during the last 1 year.

    Decide where you are going to charge daily?

    This is critical. Independent homes or condos with garages should have no problem. You will need to get an electrician install the Nema 14-50 plug and you will be all set. If you stay in an apartment complex or a rental condo with no garage then its slightly difficult albeit not impossible. You will have to get the management to install a charging station or cover the cost of running wires and getting inspection done. Refer to local state laws on your rights. I don’t think driving to a nearby supercharger (if present) is a viable solution. It will become a chore in the long run and even Tesla is against this practice going by recent mails to few offenders.

    Work out the financials

    I will be honest. One just cannot financially justify the purchase of such a costly vehicle. It’s a depreciating asset and its money lost. However one needs to work out the numbers so that you know the extent of loss and be prepared. There are a lot of factors here –
    How long do you plan to keep the car? How much can you comfortably put down? What’s your credit score/history? Are you able to procure loan at ridiculously low interest rates prevailing these days? (I was able to finance 100% , $0 down at 1.49% for 6 years). Do you have a trade-in? How much is Tesla or other buyer offering you for the trade-in? What’s you tax situation – can you claim 7.5K of fed benefit? Which state do you live to get additional state tax benefits? What are your electricity rates? What will be your anticipated savings in running costs? Anticipated savings in maintenance? Costs for opticoat, Xpel, 3M crystalline etc.
    Doing an NPV over 5 years will give you some insights and help you compare against other options (keeping your current car, buying another manufacturer new or used etc.).
    As I said earlier the purchase cannot be financially justified for most of us (there are some exceptions which I will not go into detail). As long as you are able to digest the losses you should be fine. But hey we live only once.

    Few other things

    Depending on where you are located and rarity of Teslas in the region you might be asked questions by passerby’s, photographed, followed, given 2[SUP]nd[/SUP] glances, heck even cops might stop you for some weird excuse. You will also end up driving more than your usual share of monthly miles. If your other car is a gas car then you will abhor driving that and let your better half drive it. There will be future upgrades to the car that will make your car progressively obsolete, its inevitable and is more like iphones. Software can be upgraded but the hardware cannot, so you will have to live with it.

    Now for some reviews. Having driven the car for almost a months, here are some of the things that strikes out in my first month of ownership
    Acceleration - This car is ridiculously fast. In the many stop lights that I have stomped the accelerator, there is not a single car that has come close to beating it (including AMG’s, M’s, Mustangs, Corvette). This is the base model 70D that I am talking of. I can’t imagine what P90D with ludicrous mode will feel like! The absence of any theatrics (loud engine roar, vibrations, smoke from your tailpipe etc.) when you punch the accelerator is also a big plus. It’s eerily quiet and you just hear the smooth sound of the motors.

    Single pedal driving
    – requires a bit of learning curve but it’s so much better than the old style driving of doing back and forth between brake and accelerator pedals

    Love the huge touchscreen
    – The implementation is simple and intuitive. The interface just grows on you. Wonder why other manufacturers are not following this.

    Delivery and sales process
    – my delivery specialist was previously a pilot and I marveled at his attention to detail in explaining the features (I kind of knew most of it but still). In fact most of the representatives that I interacted at Tampa service center were car enthusiasts and went beyond their regular roles. My detailing guy discovered a small scratch in the driver window (I drove the car for 2 days without noticing it!) and Tesla promptly replaced it without any questions. Throughout the sales process there was no push to make the sell. There were no price negotiations. It was a simple straightforward move to educate the customer about the product. Heck, they even drove the car 25 miles to my home to see if it would fit in my garage. Just blown away with the whole experience and is in stark contrast to the constant haggling and sales tactics employed at traditional car dealerships.

    Cleaning the car
    – Cleaning the car is a breeze and I enjoy it. Thanks in part to the opticoat and xpel on the car. Pete from first Impression Premium Auto detail did a great job in detailing it. We did opticoat plus on the whole car and wheels, xpel on the front, 3M crystalline on all windows (the heat greatly reduces due to the film and saves on your AC) and Opti guard for interiors.

    Love the color
    – I have never had a red car previously. I just love the color on this one. I did opticoat plus that really makes the car shine.

    Storage, Trunk mats
    – Storage capacity of the car is phenomenal. I think it almost equals the capacity we have in our other car, Acura MDX. I got the Tesla mats (front, back and trunk/well) and they fit pretty well. The two side wells at the back are very utilitarian. We have put eggs, milk, watermelons etc. in them without having to worry that they will move throughout the trunk floor. I haven’t used the frunk much but that’s bonus space J

    Now moving on to items that can be improved, suggestions or just plan observations
    Wifi and LTE – The wifi signal in my garage is pretty weak. The car gets connected to wifi but takes a long time to load pages, maps etc. However the 4G LTE connection is pretty strong in garage. The wifi always takes precedence over LTE without consideration for bandwidth speed. There should be an algorithm that compares the bandwidth between wifi and LTE and then select the one that’s faster.

    Downloading data
    – I like working with data. There should be a way to download all the trip data Wh/mile, KWh, rated mile, actual mile, temp, avg. speed to personal datasets. I like to see my driving performance history and perform analysis and generate trends. Maybe something in mytesla site should be made available for download. Also increase the number of trip meters. Why restrict it to only 2? There should be way to name the trip meters just like naming your car.

    Water dripping from open trunk
    – I guess this has been quoted earlier. When one lifts the trunk after rain or wash you can see water dripping from the sides due to the way it’s shaped. It doesn’t get into the trunk but still a minor inconvenience.

    Steering wheel controls
    – the music controls on the steering wheel do a good job of changing stations within a category. So you can cycle through your favorite radio stations by pressing forward/reverse however if you want to go to your favorite internet stations then you need to use the touchscreen to bring your favorites and then the steering button can be used to cycle favorite internet stations. So you cannot jump from radio to internet just by using the steering button though they all maybe stored in your favorites (or at least I don’t know how to do it yet)

    Brake dust
    – I have been using regeneration to the max and use the brakes only when really required to come to a complete standstill. So I expected less brake dust but during cleaning I see a fair degree of dust. It’s not as excessive as my old beamer but it’s still there. Don’t know why I was thinking it will never be there!

    Misc
    – I have tried TACC few times and it performed as designed. However I don’t see myself using it a lot as I want to drive the car rather some automated program J. The sunroof is huge and gives an open feeling. I don’t care about the cup holders. The center tray has grown on me and is very convenient. The seats are very comfortable and hold you tight. I am still trying to find my right lumbar support though and keep fidgeting with the lumbar controls. Homelink implementation is great and we could program it without any issues. Have set charging to 75% and always keep it plugged in. Yet to try charging at a supercharger and going on a long road trip.

    Will keep you folks posted as I learn more about the car. I want to contribute and give back in someway to this forum where I learnt so much. In the meantime enjoy these pics :smile:
     

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