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Trip Down Memory Lane - Pics of Concept and Prototype Model S - how many differences?

Francis Lau

P-1456
May 27, 2012
518
3
Bellevue, WA
Here is a trip down memory lane with photos of concept and prototype Model S. How many differences can you spot?

Photos 1 thru 8

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front_3_4a.jpg


may2011_1.jpg


Tesla_Model_S_2009_785.jpg
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Sep 21, 2013
19,206
13,857
West Vancouver, British Columbia
I have often wondered why the production S has the front strakes on both sides of the lower grille area. They don't seem to have a function. I preferred the smoother look on the initial design concept.

The seat bases in that interior view have wrinkles in them! What's with that?
 

steve841

Active Member
Jan 17, 2010
1,940
648
Ft. Lauderdale, FL
I have often wondered why the production S has the front strakes on both sides of the lower grille area. They don't seem to have a function. I preferred the smoother look on the initial design concept.

Those have louvers that open when the cooling fans are operating to draw in air. There are radiators behind them.
 

K5ING

MegaMiler
Feb 6, 2013
293
65
Denton, Texas
I think the interior changed quite a bit from the prototype. Note the location of the "gear selector" on the console (lower right corner of the picture) instead of the steering column.

tesla-model-s-infotainment-screen_100335620_m.jpg
 

karmamule

Member
May 24, 2014
261
26
Waltham, MA
The concept exterior is still quite nice, but wow I *much* prefer the current dashboard to that initial version. The enclosure around the touchscreen is especially unpleasant for me, and I much prefer the current gear-shift to the clunky controls in the concept.

Thanks for posting these, that was a great idea! :)
 

gg_got_a_tesla

Model S: VIN 65513, Model 3: VIN 1913
Jan 29, 2010
6,533
769
Redwood Shores, CA
I have often wondered why the production S has the front strakes on both sides of the lower grille area. They don't seem to have a function. I preferred the smoother look on the initial design concept.

Those have louvers that open when the cooling fans are operating to draw in air. There are radiators behind them.

Yes, and while not quite as pretty, I am sure that the lengthened "chin" (air-dam) helped the aerodynamics.

My recollection - from a Franz interview, I think - is that we have Transport Canada to thank for that. In an unfortunate collision, the protruded chin would knock pedestrians lower down their legs than at the knees thus reducing the extent of the injuries.
 

CatB

Member
Mar 2, 2013
887
695
Alexandria, VA
Thanks, Francis, for posting these - since I first heard of Tesla and first saw it when I testdrove in Dec '12, I have never seen them. I love how they streamlined the interior, not surprising that Tesla continuously improves :)
 

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