By Jad Msan.
Tesla is the coolest electric car ever. Available in both the US and Canada, surely you have seen a few on the road that have inspired comments of awe and intrigue among you and your passengers. At first, people thought that electric cars wouldn’t have good performance and that they wouldn’t be of good quality. But Elon Musk, the creator of Tesla, proved them wrong. The reason that he created Tesla is not because it would be cool to own one, but because pollution levels were and still are rising around the world.
The roadster was the first car Tesla made. It was a nice sports car and people liked it. The only problem was that it didn’t draw too many sales because it was too expensive. Therefore, it didn’t make much of an impact on reducing pollution levels. For that reason, Tesla released a new car, the Model S.
Priced at $93,000 US, in 2012, upon its introduction to the market, this Tesla model drew some financially able customers. It was a novelty that looked awesome, had a luxurious interior, lots of passenger space, two trunks and an amazing 17 inch touchscreen control panel.
Were there any compromises? No. This car has a top-level performance and is designed to be the safest car on the road. Much of its safety is owed to the electric drivetrain that sits beneath the car instead of in the front of it, like in a gas powered car. This unique positioning lowers the car’s center of gravity, which minimizes rollover risks. In the event of an accident, eight airbags protect the front and rear passengers and the power source is automatically disconnected. Also, the car’s body is made of thick aluminum, which is surprisingly strong. Here is the link to a Tesla Model S crash test: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTC6cro_ZVo
Tesla is electric, so it runs with motors and not an engine. (And, because of the electric drivetrain that sits beneath the car, there is the additional front trunk!) There are four different motors available, most enabling all-wheel drive. They are the P90D, 90D, 70D and 70. The P90D is the strongest motor and is designed mainly for quick acceleration. This motor is a combo of two motors, a standard one driving the front wheels and a high performance one driving the back wheels, hence the all-wheel drive feature.
The P90D has a top speed of 250 kph, an acceleration of 0-100 kph in 3.3 seconds, 259 horsepower in the front motor and 503 horsepower in the rear motor. The 90D motor is also split between front and back, but they are both standard motors. This motor has a top speed of 250 kph, an acceleration of 0-100 kph in 4.4 seconds and 250 horse power in the front and rear motors. And the 70D motor has a top speed of 225 kph, an acceleration of 0-100 kph in 5.4 seconds and 259 horsepower in the front and rear motors. The 70 motor, which sits only in the back, offers rear wheel drive. This motor has a top speed of 225 kph, an acceleration of 0-100 kph in 5.8 seconds and 382 horsepower.
Here’s a table summarizing the differences between all motors:
|Top speed (kph)||250||250||225||225|
|Acceleration 0-100 kph||3.3s||4.4||5.4||5.8|
|Front motor HP||259||250||259||–|
|Back motor HP||503||250||259||382|
The Model S range per charge depends on which motor is in the car, the speed the car is going, the outdoor temperature, the size of the wheels and whether the AC or heater is on. Figure 1 shows the range per charge under the worst conditions and Figure 2 shows the range per charge under the best conditions.
The Model S comes with a lifetime access to the Tesla supercharger network, which is a network of charging stations that charge both Model S and Model X in minutes instead of hours. These supercharger stations are conveniently located near restaurants and shopping centers. A Tesla purchase also includes an eight-year infinite kilometer battery and drive warranty.
The headlights on this great vehicle come with the adaptive lighting feature, which allows them to turn sideways for better vision at night. Wow. It also features a HEPA filter, which removes at least 99.97% of contaminants from the air inside the car. A built-in autopilot mode allows the car to steer within lanes on its own, change lanes with the simple tap of a turn button and manage speed by using traffic aware cruise control. Additionally, a digital control of the motors, brakes and steering helps avoid collisions from the front and sides, and prevents the car from wandering off the road. This awesome car can scan its surroundings for a parking spot, give an alert when one is available and even parallel park on command!
If that’s not enough, the Tesla is made with a unique glass panoramic roof. This roof gives a feeling of openness and freedom unmatched by any other car, and is perfect for looking up into the sky and observing stars.
More and more cars these days are being made with touchscreens, but believe me, I’ve been in a Model S and none of those touchscreens compare to this one. This luxury automobile features a 17 inch touchscreen that controls most of the car’s functions, like the glass panoramic roof, customizing the automatic climate control, changing the radio station, using the backup camera, using Google maps, showing the battery consumption/range estimation and using the calendar and hands-free phone system. All in all, the touchscreen is the part of the car you would use most. Everyone loves the Tesla Model S, and 78,000 people in the US and Canada have bought one so far.
In 2015, 50% of the population wanted an SUV, so Tesla released one: the Model X. With a starting price of $106,000 US, the Model X encompasses all the luxury, safety and performance features of the Model S. In addition, it is available with seven passenger seating. It continually scans its surroundings with camera, radar and sonar systems, providing the driver with real-time feedback to help avoid collisions. And it comes with the autopilot and self-parking features, the HEPA filter and the 17 inch touchscreen.
Model X features awesome falcon wing doors, which allow easy access to the second and third row seats from even a tight parking space. This beauty also has the largest glass panoramic windshield and obstruction-free view. Just like in the Model S, there are two trunks. The third row seats fold flat when not in use and the second row seats lean forward and out of the way for even more cargo space. Plus, Model X has a 5,000 pound towing capacity.
Available, like in the Model S, are the P90D and 90D motors. The 70 and 70D motors, however, have been replaced by the 75D motor. With all wheel drive, this motor has a top speed of 210 kph and an acceleration of 0-100 km in 6.2 seconds.
The Model S and the Model X are both amazing cars, but for most people they are still too expensive. With the funds raised from the sales of these cars, Tesla was able to initiate the production of a new car affordable by most, the Model 3. With a price tag of $35,000 US, this sedan will soon be produced in mass quantities. Although the Model 3 is not on the road yet, it is available to be pre-ordered for an additional $1,000 US, and deliveries will start late 2017.
The Model 3 is capable of going 316 km per charge. There is only one motor available, which has an acceleration of 0-100 kph in under 6 seconds. The car has five-passenger seating, it uses autopilot, there are two trunks and it’s designed to achieve a five-star safety rating. It also supports supercharging.
There are excessive gas emissions these days, mostly coming from cars, but Elon Musk has found a way to stop that. The Tesla Model S, Model X and Model 3 are the cars that will change the history of automobiles.