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Tesla P90D Review: Elon Musk Wants Your Sedan to Be Ludicrously Fun

S'toon

Knows where his towel is
Apr 23, 2015
3,702
3,646
AB
Elon Musk likes to have fun.


Sure, his schedule these days is full, managing SpaceX and developing Tesla’s game-changing Model X, a gullwing electric SUV.


But he’s also the guy who sent a block of cheese into space as an inside joke, who met his actress wife in a European nightclub, and who named the new warp-speed option in his posh sedans Ludicrous Mode, after terminology from Spaceballs. When I visited his Bel Air home a few years ago as part of a story on his work, we played sci-fi video games (he’s very good) and talked about cult classic films.


So it stands to reason that the current crown jewel in Musk’s engineering repertoire, the 2016 Model S P90D, would have to be fun enough to drive to keep its mastermind creator meaningfully engaged.
I can vouch for that, and more.


The P90D hits 1.1 Gs at max acceleration, which is more than the pushback force you feel during free fall. It goes zero to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds. That’ll keep pace, no sweat, with a Lamborghini Huracan and a McLaren 650S.


P90D gets its name from the “Dual” motor arrangement that enables its all-wheel drive and the 90 kilowatt-hour battery pack that boosts drive range by 6 percent. (The "P" is for "performance," natch.) It’s not the normal Model S. It’s not even the P85D Model S that broke Consumer Reports. This one is even better. It uses the 90 kw dual-motor combination (a $35,000 upgrade over the $70,000 base model) to eke out the equivalent of 98 mpg in highway driving and approach distances of 300 miles on one charge. Assuming 15,000 miles and $0.12 per kwh, you’ll spend $650 per year to fuel it, according to the owner's manual. According mpg data from the US Department of Transportation, the average car will cost $1,519 a year to fuel, assuming the same mileage and a price of $2.37 per gallon of gas.

Driving the P90D is like being high. (Let's say … getting a runner's high.) It’s like entering a different plane. You seem to move through space and time at different speeds than people and objects around you. You feel untouchable. The P90D is not as nimble as a 911 or an M3. It shouldn’t be—it’s a sedan, not a coupe. But it manages traffic like Serena Williams manages anyone unlucky enough to face her across the net—with extreme fluidity, unrelenting beauty, and devastating force. This is where the good visibility throughout the side and rear windows, the front- and rear-running cameras, and the lane-departure warning systems really shine.

<snip>
Full article at:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...n-musk-wants-your-sedan-to-be-ludicrously-fun
 

Andyw2100

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2014
6,542
2,393
Ithaca, NY
So it stands to reason that the current crown jewel in Musk’s engineering repertoire, the 2016 Model S P90D, would have to be fun enough to drive to keep its mastermind creator meaningfully engaged.
I can vouch for that, and more.

Full article at:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...n-musk-wants-your-sedan-to-be-ludicrously-fun

Not a bad article, but it would have been nice if the author had correctly identified the car she drove as a 2015 model instead of a 2016 model.
 

Pete90D

Fan of Red Lights
Jul 25, 2015
478
4
Bay Area, CA
I really liked that they chose the same color I did. Seeing a nice video of what was basically my car was kind of cool :)

Obviously these are personal preference, but I found the options she would remove as odd.

I'm not a huge spoiler fan and when I picked it I wasn't sure I was doing the right thing, but as I see cars without them I feel it was a good choice. It is minimal, but it adds something to the car that feels very appropriate for the PXXD.

She also mentions removing the 21" wheels. I've read the posts about why 19" wheels are preferred by many, but appearance-wise it always looked off to me. I'm not saying it is a Ferrari or Lambo, and it is a sedan, but a really fast sleek car with fat tires looks odd to me. The low profile tires will result in better handling, which is also more characteristic of a high performance car. It's almost like downgrading the car by switching to 19s. With the price tag of a PXXD it's hard for me to buy the argument of expensive tires.

I guess it is that you're paying $130k+ for a high performance car, performance that many say is unnecessary, so why have it look like a standard sedan. You're paying for something special so it should look more like a performance car and those features give it that extra touch.
 

Andyw2100

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2014
6,542
2,393
Ithaca, NY
Obviously these are personal preference, but I found the options she would remove as odd.

I'm not a huge spoiler fan and when I picked it I wasn't sure I was doing the right thing, but as I see cars without them I feel it was a good choice. It is minimal, but it adds something to the car that feels very appropriate for the PXXD.

Not to mention it is dirt cheap relative to a lot of the other stuff, and it actually may be somewhat functional as well, though I guess that is debatable.
 

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