All-electric drivetrain; luxurious interior with plenty of space, great performance, good looks; competitive pricing
The Tesla Model S comes with one of three basic powertrain choices, two of which are available in the standard Model S and the third of which is only available on the Model S Performance. The standard Model S comes with 60-kWh or 85-kWh battery options. The 60-kWh version is powered by a 302-hp electric motor and has an EPA certified range of 208 miles. The 85-kWh Model S ups the range to 265 miles, while simultaneously increasing horsepower to 362. The Model S Performance also utilizes 85-kWh batteries for a 265-mile range, but the electric motor has been boosted to 416 hp.
All three versions will go from 0-60 in under six seconds, but the Performance model is the quickest with a 0?60 time of just 4.2 seconds, comparable to many top-end sports cars. The Model S also handles much better than its size would suggest thanks to an extremely low center of gravity, made possible by the low, flat battery pack stored under the floor.
The interior of the Model S is as groundbreaking and unconventional as the rest of the car. Where traditional cars have a vast array of buttons and knobs on the dashboard and between the front seats, the Model S simply has a huge 17-inch capacitive touchscreen. All of the media, communication, infotainment and in-cabin controls function through this screen, resulting in an amazingly uncluttered interior.
The standard feature list is extensive on the Model S, and includes 19-inch wheels, a 200-watt stereo system, Alcantara headliner, driver seat detection sensor for start/stop functionality, LED map and rear reading lights, Wi-Fi readiness, and the 17-inch touchscreen in the dashboard. The options list is also quite lengthy. A variety of charging options are available, including a twin charging system to help reduce charging times, as well as access to Tesla's "Supercharger" network, the infrastructure Tesla is currently building all around the United States. Free access is optional on the base car and standard on the other other models, and Tesla claims that a Supercharger station can give the Model S a 50 percent charge in just half an hour.
Other interesting options include a glass panoramic sunroof, two rear-facing jump seats, a 580-watt stereo and 21-inch wheels. An optional tech package consists of xenon lights, memory seats, a power rear lift gate, keyless entry, a high-definition back up camera, GPS navigation and electrochromic side mirrors.
Tesla has also done its best to make sure that the Model S is an extremely safe vehicle. The batteries are spread out beneath the floor of the car, actually helping to improve chassis stiffness while simultaneously lowering the center of gravity. Tesla were also able to design a front crumple zone unhindered by the need to fit an engine in the front of the car, further improving safety. Of course, safety features such as anti-lock brakes and traction control are standard, as are eight airbags.
Since its introduction in mid-2012 as a 2013 model, the Tesla Model S has forced the industry to rethink the luxury car segment. Rather than adhering to traditional model years, Tesla makes running changes as needed throughout the calendar year. For 2014, the instrument cluster trim has been restyled and the previously optional Alcantara headliner and parcel shelf are now standard. Lots of subtle changes have also been made.
The problem with electric vehicles has always been range. Tesla has dealt with this by employing bigger and better batteries in the Model S than have previously been seen in electric vehicles. Even with the smallest batteries in its most basic trim, Tesla still claims a 200-plus mile range for the Model S, easily besting the range of any of its potential competitors. Beyond the drivetrain though, the Model S is a competent luxury car with impressive performance. There is plenty of room both inside the passenger cabin and in the trunk, making the Model S both spacious and practical. The car can even be fitted with a pair of rear facing jump seats, which pushes the seating total up to seven. Model S ownership starts at under $70,000, making it comparable to many European large luxury sedans, and while the Model S matches most of these sedans in terms of luxury and performance, it offers other benefits they can't hope to match.
Vehicle Price: 70,890.00
*Estimated payments are for informational purposes only and don't account for acquisition fees, destination charges, tax, title, and other fees and incentives or represent a financing offer or guarantee of credit from the seller.
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