The Tesla Model X - A Lifestyle Take

Whereupon Bloomberg's Hannah Elliott takes a road trip in a $150,000.00 Model X through super-charger rich California and produces a video assessment of the vehicle with a duration of less than three and a half minutes.

Elliott's video review is posted below from YouTube. The conclusions are that the car feels virtuous but it's cost isn't the money, but the time-sucking lifestyle of an electric auto's charging requirements and the lack of "mechanical" nature of the drive.

I genuinely appreciate the lifestyle discussion from Elliott due to her funky personal fashion taste and the casual but caring but also matter-of-fact tone she uses, but when you put it all together it doesn't ring with sincerity. She scratches the surface of lifestyle, states that doors open unexpectedly without any real visual evidence, and forgets that a single-gear dual motor drive train is about as direct as once gets when it comes to the mechanics of a car-- especially when one compares that to the Triptronics and paddle shiftiness of modern, conventionally powered sport luxury vehicles. 

When it comes to complaints about range, the crossover segment, perhaps more than any other auto segment, is designed for the daily errands and the weekend warrior-- both well within the battery range of the top-end model Elliott evaluated-- and that's in Colorado, where mountain climbs are steeper (I-70) than CA and Superchargers are bit more rare.

Then there's the ample time that the (very short) evaluation spends on waiting for the Model X to charge up at the super charging station. The editing makes the charging seem disproportionately long compared to the balance of her five day trip along the CA coast. Time that could be spent discussing the intimate details of any connection she has with the vehicle are spend bouncing a ball in a corner or talking on the phone...which she does on the handset while sitting in the car rather than showing us how well the bluetooth hands-free works.

I'm disappointed. Elliott could have done a lot more in the time she had.

The (Unofficial) Tesla Commercial

"Tesla 'Not a Dream'" is an independently created commercial, using the words of inventor Nikola Tesla to extol the virtues of Tesla Motors's vehicles and their presumed ability to lead the US to a future that's free of the pollution and destruction of fossil fuels. It's visuals are a little extreme, but I'm sure that those passionate about the problem and/or the car will find the video moving.

It's worth noting that Tesla Motors doesn't advertise very much. The fact that fans are willing to create content like this for them is impressive to say the least.

And for any geeks out there it's like 1984, all over again

So what does Tesla Motors CEO think of the video? He digs it.


The Best-Selling Luxury Sedan in America

Speaking of Tesla, here's David Z. Morris, writing for Fortune:

"...a huge shift in the auto industry: The Model S is now the top-selling luxury sedan in the U.S, beating out cars from established rivals like Audi, Mercedes, and Lexus. Moreover, the car, according to Tesla, is still gaining market share."

According to the article, Model S sales went from 16,689 units in 2014 to 25,202 sales in 2015-- an up-tick of +51.01% , Every other competing vehicle in the class, regardless of how its propelled, has a negative % change year over year from 2014 to 2015. 

If Tesla can get production right and satisfy demand, the US can really have a chance at hitting emissions targets well before targets. 

Let's remember that the patents for this technology were released in 2014 for all to implement in their automobiles. GM's Bolt and Volt, alongside with the new Nissan Leaf will make use of them in their next generation vehicles. Audi, BMW and Mercedes can use this tech too. But thus far, Audi has their e-Tron A3, BMW has the i3 and the incredibly (even by Tesla's standards) i8, and Mercedes has an upcoming plug in GLE.

At the end of the day, none of these are vehicles are as practical as the Tesla Model S, a saloon that can seat 5-7 people with up to two trunk storage compartments while maintaining a 200+ mile range. The aforementioned GLE and Volvo's new XC 90 are the closest thing to a Tesla offering, with their generous passenger accommodations and storage facilities, but the ride-height takes it to Model X territory, and neither of those two vehicles can begin to touch the acceleration and handling capabilities of Tesla's young SUV.