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Feb 06 2013

Just the FAQs

Tesla Motors has a FAQ page. It’s for potential buyers. Real people on the street have their own FAQs. Here are some of them.

  1. How much gas does it use?
    Uh, zippo.
  2. How far can you go?
    EPA claimed maximum is 268m. At 80% “standard” charge, 240m. You use about 20m for air conditioning and driving faster than 55mph, so call it 225m.
  3. How long does it take to recharge?
    On a 110V outlet, days. On a 240V outlet, overnight. With a high speed wall charger, a few hours. With the highway superchargers (when available), less than an hour.
  4. What happens if you’re on the highway and you run out of electricity?
    What happens when you run out of gas? You don’t because you plan ahead. Same thing.
  5. How often do you recharge?
    Trickle-charge every night. More prolonged charge after a road trip greater than, say, 50m, but still overnight.  Full recharge after a long-distance trip can take several days on a 110V.
  6. How much does it cost?
    $50,000 to $75,000. But plan to add more options, so as much as $100,000.
  7. Does it make any noise?
    Not at slow speeds. Startles people in parking lots. At highway speeds, tire and wind noise are evident, and around 70mph a slight hum is noticeable (gearbox?) But much quieter than other cars.
  8. How long does the battery last?
    8 year warranty. I’ll worry about it then.
  9. Where do you get service?
    Anywhere they can send a Ranger.
  10. Is it safe in a collision?
    No real-world data yet, but Tesla unofficially claims a 5-star NHTSA crash test rating.
  11. Aren’t you worried about Tesla going out of business?
    Nope.