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Tesla – an Electrifying Performer!!!

 

Tesla Motors was launched in July 2003. The founders, Marc Tarpenning & Martin Ebhaed’s first effort, to show the world what electric cars are capable of and hence developed the Tesla Roadster.

Less than a year later, Elon Musk entered with a large wad of cash. BTW who is this Elon Musk ? He is the co-founder of Space X, Paypal and zip 2. E-Bay bought Paypal giving Musk 165 million to play with. This he used to fund Space X, the commercial space exploration company, and Tesla Motors. Musk, earlier the Chairman and the largest investor had to take some really hard decisions to safeguard his investment and for his ideas to survive. Over time, Musk took over as CEO.

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The Tesla Roadster was the first electric car to combine performance of a sports car and a never before seen range in an electric car of over 200 miles per charge. The Roadster was based on a Lotus Elise and had a 0-97 kmh time on a mind blowing 3.9 seconds. The amalgamation of performance that could shame the Ferrari’s with an amazing range that was never before seen in an electric car was a real game changer. The roadster sold at $110000 – Expensive, yes. But this was to prove to the world what an electric car can do. Lotus may have made the chassis specially for Tesla but the power-train and battery pack came from the experts at Tesla.

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Yesterday, Elon Musk Announced that the 2600 roadster owners can now upgrade to a battery pack which will give them a jaw dropping 400 mile range.

Now obviously Tesla cannot keep selling very few models for “Hundred Thousand Dollar a Car” to sustain….

So here comes in the Secret Tesla Motors Master Plan!  Their ultimate plan was to build a wide range of models including affordable family cars. Not to forget, Musk put in most of his personal money into this company at a time when electric cars just didn’t seem practical.

So why start off with an expensive and high performance sports car? Why not start working on building an affordable design from day one? A handful of high speed electric cars are not going to help reduce emissions. Developing new technology means putting in that money for research and development. This cost has to be pushed to the consumer. That’s just how any company works. So by targeting people with the spending power and then slowly entering the volume markets, you will make the company sustainable.

Next in line – the Tesla Model S!

A selling price of close to $90,000 a car

When Tesla showcased the model S in March 2009 it promised to change the electric car market. Three months later, the US Department of Energy gives a $465 Million Loan. They Kept a $ 100 million aside and the rest goes into retrofitting a manufacturing facility in Fremont, California which was a defunct joint venture of Toyota and GM.

A year Later, in June 2009, the company goes public.

Flash forward by three years. The model S is launched. Year 2012 they sold over 2600 units. Tesla set a target of 21,000 units for 2013 and shattered this target by selling a little under 22,500 units.

The game changing Tesla Model S.

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Sold in two states of tune, one 60 and another 85 kW-h batteries that power a 310 kW motor. ( Note : this is electric car territory, bhp in not a preferred unit of power measurement )

The motor(The size of a Watermelon) drives the rear wheel and the battery pack sits in a neat bed like structure below the chassis. This gives the car a perfect 50/50 weight distribution.

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This give the Model S some amazing interior space including 2 huge boots. The rear boot has optional folding seats making a total seating capacity to seven. The front Trunk which has been aptly named frunk can house a full grown man. I’m Serious. Check the video below !

The Model S has the ride quality of a sedan and the responsiveness and agility of a sports car.

Because it runs off electricity, there is no lag in the power delivery. A push of the throttle will accelerate you to 97kmh in 5.6 seconds. You have all the power on the word GO!

Features of the Model S

Active Air Suspension

Air suspension systems do provide the best comfort. The system in the Model S goes a step further. At high speeds, the car hunkers down. Making it highly aerodynamic giving it performance and range. What about tricky road situations? Open up the large touchscreen and adjust the height to ‘Rise Above the Problem’.

Key Fob & Vehicle Dynamics.

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The key is a mini Model S model. It features a mini model S model that you touch and squeeze to activate various parts of the car. The car senses the presence of the key and unlocks itself. The door handles don’t present themselves until you tap on them. They sit flush with the car body. All this to reduce unwanted drag increasing the efficiency of the vehicle. These small but many design considerations makes the model S one of the “Slipperiest Cars on Road“.

Charging the Model S.

The model S charges at a rate of 100km per hour at a standard home socket. This is really impressive but what is really amazing is Tesla’s Super Charging Network. A charge of 50% of full capacity in just 20 minutes!

Walk into the station, drop your model S for a charge, grab a hot cup of coffee and something to munch and bam! You’re ready to move along. The supercharging stations are planned to seamlessly connect the eastern to western coast in the US. Similar plans to cover Europe too! The range problem? Solved!

The Red Indicates Completed Superchargers and the Cones indicate the ones under construction.
The Red Indicates Completed Superchargers and the Cones indicate the ones under construction.

The Control Center

On the inside, there are almost no buttons. Everything, literally everything is controlled by a humongous 17″ touchscreen.

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Stream music from the internet radio, or a device connected from one of the two USB ports or Bluetooth.

Control your lights, doors, locks, temperature control, maps, navigation, rear view camera, sunroof, vehicle setup and config. It this wasn’t enough, you can browse the internet too!

Safety:

If a petrol powered vehicle catches fire it’s just another normal day. No one bats an eye. In 2013, two model S’s were involved in an accident and caught fire. However, the on-board security systems kept the occupants safe. This certainly did get Tesla some bad publicity. The chances of a fire in a gasoline powered catching fire is 1 in 8000 vehicles and Tesla’s figure 5 times less!

To counter this problem, an Over – the – Air update (No i’m not talking about your mobile phone) upgraded the cars software to increase the car’s ground clearance at highway speeds. All while the owner was sound asleep and had no idea that his car was being made safe without even going to the service center. To be double sure, Tesla retrofitted all existing model S’s with a triple under-body shield, free of charge.

The track record still remains. Zero deaths or permanent & serious injuries. There is no safer car on the road than a Tesla.

Remember the Tesla Master Plan? 

The next step has been announced! 

Taking on the BMW 3 series, a $35000 sedan the Model 3 is coming. A good half the price of the model S and expected to launch in 2017.

2017 seems so far away? Oh wait, 2015 will see the Tesla Model X, a complete electric crossover, 4 wheel drive and the best part – the falcon doors!

Tesla_Model_X_Geneva_2012_trimmed

All this aside. I want to give you the biggest news that shook the entire world. Tesla has patents to their electric car designs and They have released all their patents for the world to use for FREE !

The wall of patents have been pulled down and replaced by this.

Bottom Line:

Such a bold move only to make the world a better place to live in. All the conspiracy theorists can keep away!

Visit Tesla motors webiste: http://www.teslamotors.com

 

8.6 out of 10
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A pure petrol head. Soon to be Automobile Engineer, Top Gear and F1 Fan. EDM Lover.