Unless you can afford to buy a Tesla model S, starting at about $140,000AU, I highly recommend you don’t take one for a test drive. If you do take one out, you are going to want to buy one and they are bloody expensive!
The car itself reminds me of smart phone in a car package. It has got everything you need plus a whole lot more from the technology point of view. It is better than your typical Superman Roller Coaster with mind blowing acceleration. This is due to the all-wheel drive function if fitted with two wheel motors combined with unbelievable traction control.
- Comes with an App for your phone to ‘Find My Tesla’, which is perfect for those who are a little bit directionless. Whether or not the vehicle is on charge, this still works.
- When your phone syncs to the Tesla you get notified of your schedule plus any meetings or appointments and access to all your contacts.
- If the car is a bit hot when you are approaching the vehicle, or you are in the shops, you can turn the air conditioner on or open up the sun-roof before you get to your car.
- Automated driving sequences, such as lane changing with just with the flick of a blinker and automated reverse parking with a click of a button.
As far as the interior of the Tesla Model S goes, it is meticulously finished and highly detailed. The quality of the materials is obvious to all. There is no center console as there is no drive shaft cavity. This gives the car an open and spacious feel which leads up to the large touch panel display. The Tesla will receive automated updates that come down from ‘the cloud’, updating the software so you get all the features of the latest release vehicles as long as all the physical attributes are installed in your Tesla Model S.
The display directly in front of you as you drive is out of this world showing both traffic conditions, warnings including lane departure plus adaptive cruise control functions. All of these technologies have been discussed in our driverless car technology category on this site.
The Tesla model S has a selectable ‘Creep’ mode which replicates the same feeling you get from your standard automatic car when you take your foot off the break and it starts to creep forward. You can also put your steering into Soft or Hard mode to suit moving around a car park or doing some serious driving out on the open road. There are also the different acceleration modes that you can choose again depending on your driving conditions and your mood.
There is also a vehicle height adjustment feature allowing the vehicle to raise itself when going over a gutter or speed bump. The height adjustment works well if you drive up a gutter each day to get into your house. You can adjust the car height once on the way in, so it raises from the Low Sports mode to a height suitable for getting over the gutter, and then you simply tell it to do the same thing every single time you approach that particular GPS location.
You will get an 8 year warranty on not only the batteries but also the entire drive chain. There is no spare tire which some of you may be thinking “bloody great”. For me personally, I would rather have a spare tire as there is plenty of room to put a spare in the boot and although you don’t get a flat tire very often, I would rather just get in and change a tire rather than hanging around waiting for someone to turn up with a bloody tire from god knows where. They will come and change your tire and don’t charge you a dime. Of course there are plenty of people who don’t want the hassle of changing their own tire and so this service is perfect – merely a personal choice.
Services are at 20,000km. It doesn’t affect the warranty if you don’t turn up and really what have you got to service anyway? The motors are all sealed units, the batteries are all sealed, there is not a single grease nipple on the car, there is no oil, no grease, there is just no point in servicing it! You may as well spend this time at the beach! You could take it in every 20,000kms, they will plug the computer in and make sure everything is ok but don’t panic if you miss your service.
So, what does it need? Hard to know really, it is a pretty awesome vehicle. Probably needs a six pack cooler for these hot Australian conditions and an ejector seat for people you don’t like or the missus.
What I really got out of this Tesla Model S, when I stepped out of the test drive was a feeling of euphoria. Go buy one..Or at least take the test drive and thank me later…..