Driving Tesla’s Model S, a most en-lightning experience

With Tesla’s Supercharger network now snaking its way up the US west coast and more of them popping up in Europe and Canada on a near monthly basis one of the biggest barriers to mass market acceptance is slowly being removed from consumer’s minds.

However, halfway through our test drive the display produced a histogram chart akin to an earthquake reading, which provided direct visual evidence that my more “energetic” driving style, with its Himalayan peaks, had reduced the car’s range from a 298 miles (480 km) to something very much lower. But regenerative braking did assist in bringing the range and charge up somewhat.

Speaking of regenerative braking, Tesla has configured the car with two options – standard and low. When set in low the car slows down at a less aggressive rate, providing less charge back to the battery pack. Standard braking, on the other hand, is similar to engine-braking in gas powered vehicles. This setting recharges the battery pack much quicker. The difference between the two is quite remarkable.

The P85 Model S prices out at around US$105,000 for the premium package and performance powertrain where the slower, cheaper Model S 60 kWh starts out at US$80,000.

Next up on the list, seat time in Tesla’s insane new AWD Model S P85D. The D stands for Dual Motor, one on each axle but according to Elon Musk the D actually stands for ‘Daaaaaammmmn!’.

Thanks to Tesla for the opportunity.
(Portfolio: this photo-feature originally ran in Gizmag, 2013)

Source: Tesla Motors

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