Print 38 comment(s) - last by Jeffk464.. on Aug 1 at 9:57 PM

Tesla Model S
Beta models will be used for testing and for marketing

The Tesla Model S is the next EV that will hit the streets from Tesla. Tesla made its name with the $100,000 Tesla roadster that had an electric driving range of about 200 miles. The problem was that the Roadster cost so much and only held two people making it impractical for the masses.

Tesla has now started the beta production of its new car, the Model S. Like the Roadster, the Model S is an all-electric car with no gasoline motor. The Model S is also a larger vehicle that will hold four adults inside and it is much cheaper than the Tesla Roadster. The Model S is still, however, far from what most would consider affordable  (base price $57,000). 

“We have started assembling the Beta vehicles,” Tesla Motors’ Model S Program Director Jerome Guillen said. ”While most Betas are intended for testing to prepare for production, a few are earmarked for visits to North American Tesla stores later this year.”

The first of the beta vehicles will be used for testing and for press drives.

The S is expected to have a driving range of about 300 miles. The car is about $20,000 more expensive than the Nissan Leaf. The Leaf is rated for 100 miles on a charge, but the real world driving range varies greatly from 80 miles to as low as 60 miles in some areas. The real world driving range of the Model S will likely be lower than the estimates of Tesla.

VentureBeat reports that Tesla is also working on an all-electric SUV called the Model X. It will run on the same powertrain as the Model S. There is no indication at this point when the model X will be seen.

“Alpha” versions of the Model S started rolling off the production line back in January.

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RE: Performance
By Flunk on 7/29/2011 3:35:08 PM , Rating: 2
It's not going to be that fast, think standard luxury car speed. Like a Lexus, Acura or BMW (not M type).

RE: Performance
By Iaiken on 7/29/2011 6:44:00 PM , Rating: 2
Because the Tesla battery warranty resets every time you do. :D

RE: Performance
By Iaiken on 7/29/2011 6:44:37 PM , Rating: 2
Weird... I replied to Spuke's post and it put it here.

RE: Performance
By Spuke on 7/30/2011 6:39:34 PM , Rating: 2
That's happened to me a couple of times. I'm thinking these battery swap stations could make a killing personally. What's the average gas tank size (US)? I think I saw 17 gallons somewhere. $3.70 for gas nationally so $63, we'll say $60. I could claim battery tech is new and futuristic or whatever marketing spin I can get away with and charge at least $120 to swap the smallest battery packs, close to $200 for mid-sized packs, and $300 for larger packs. The heavier the pack the more I charge. People would pay it because it's not like they'll be doing this all the time, just when they go to Vegas or grandma's house for Christmas or something. Ohhh, Vegas! Baker would be the perfect place for a swap station too! Make that two, on in Baker and one at the top of the hill outside of Baker. Range would be down in the toilet because of the heat and heavy loads on the battery. Probably would need one in Victorville right at the top of the hill there also. And one more right outside of Vegas itself. I might have to look into this a little more.

RE: Performance
By Jeffk464 on 7/31/2011 12:02:16 AM , Rating: 2
You know people should really be taking high speed rail from LA to Vegas. Don't know why we can never get the damned thing built, almost every other first world country seems to be able to.

RE: Performance
By Ringold on 7/31/2011 1:38:23 PM , Rating: 2
Because it's about 250 miles, and a lot of it through barren, rugged land, covering more land and more rugged land than some of those Western European 'first world countries' you mentioned have total.

And yeah, China has high speed rail, but their trains also tend to run off the rails.

Just everything I've read about it estimates some ridiculous costs.. I'd say if Californians want it then they can pay for it, but there's a LOT that the federal government could do that'd make a bigger difference for the country with those billions. (And I dont aim to start political fights over Iraq, I'm thinking things like James Webb Space Telescope or more critical infrastructure upgrades)

RE: Performance
By Spuke on 7/31/2011 10:55:47 PM , Rating: 2
You know people should really be taking high speed rail from LA to Vegas.
Guess you've never driven that route. The terrain and weather is pretty hard core (part of it is just south of Death Valley). The environmental studies alone would bankrupt any developer. And you'd never recover the costs. Not to mention, do you know how many millions of people travel that road. Have you ever seen stop and go traffic 200 miles from the nearest town/city/anything before?

RE: Performance
By Spuke on 7/31/2011 11:00:58 PM , Rating: 2
I hit send before finishing. You'd need a TON of trains to make ANY appreciable dent in traffic reduction.

RE: Performance
By Chernobyl68 on 8/1/2011 7:02:53 PM , Rating: 2
A double track of high speed rail has the equivalent capacity of a 12 lane freeway.

RE: Performance
By Jeffk464 on 8/1/2011 9:52:05 PM , Rating: 2
Heavy traffic is a reason for high speed trains, not an argument against them. Why would you put any kind of mass transit in a low traffic area?

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007
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