The real reason why I got a Tesla

The real reason why I got a Tesla

Its pure mid life crises. Not into green this and that, give me Paleo before eating vegan, sprouts…seriously people we make no difference. Please pay a trip to Africa or South Asia…millions of motorbikes, emission pollution up the gazoo that are not changing in our lifetime with comfortable westerners driving luxury sedans. I also did not get it to sit and calculate drag coefficient, charge rates and pretend to be Thomas Edison. Got it because we had a stellar financial year in a crummy economy, gadget car to the max, total wow factor and not interested in Americans fighting for hearts and minds (Oil Interests) in countries that would rather see us fail.

That being said I think I'm a good demographic and don't need to post "No Emissions" on my head to in order to feel superior.

Carefree | 09. April 2013

Wow, hope you feel better now:-)

herkimer | 09. April 2013

Ah fancy this! A proclamation of self-adulation intended to put down the rest of us. True, you are no Thomas Edison, and no need to pretend. There is no room on your head for "No Emissions," the words are too big, and you already feel superior with ignorance written all over you.

rochec | 09. April 2013

It won't change in our lifetime and it never will without a real push off the cliff. The Model S has a true shot at accomplishing most of that push.

edcalis | 09. April 2013

Three reasons why I got the S.
1- I hate to give my money to people who want us dead. Hint: Oil. 2- ~300 mile-range.
3 - Buy American

hillcountryfun | 09. April 2013


Thanks for the post, I'm very happy to hear that Elon's strategy to build a 21st century vehicle that just happens to have an electric drive-train is working! I wish other manufacturers would figure it out and follow his lead.

Now, NoPetrol, you really should do more research...those millions of ICE's/Coal Power Plants/ect. are changing things. That said, cause and effect is difficult in humans, most folks are 18 years old before they're brains are even capable. Some never figure it out and effects that take decades will be beyond the majority of humanity. It's always best to have an open mind.

Thanks again for your post...

petero | 09. April 2013

NOPetrol . Good for you, I admire the “if you got it flaunt it” attitude. By the way congratulations on having a great year. I bought a MS because it was simply the best car money could buy … and I wanted it. I like the ‘plug and play’ aspect of the MS and the simplicity of the interior, the touchscreen, regen brakes – the whole package. I could have bought a Panamera, Quattroporte, BMW, Audi, MB but I liked the Tesla better.

Be honest, tell me you don’t separate your cans and bottles - sometimes, and perhaps you even hug a tree once in awhile. How great is it that you can drive the best car on the road … and still be a little green - if you choose?

Ecorreadds | 09. April 2013

So then the real green motive is having others green with envy! Whatever works!

Sanjuro | 09. April 2013

It's ironic that Thomas Edison would be brought up in a Tesla forum! The real Edison would probably not know onr care about CoD or anything theoretical. The two men were great rivals, no doubt geniuses, but in different ways.

NOPetrol | 09. April 2013

@petero thanks, yep do recycle and love Wholefoods dislike bottled water and plastic bags. Agree with your reasoning for buying it completely regen brakes, touchscreen etc.

carlk | 09. April 2013

You are exactly the kind of customers Elon wanted to attract. The strategy is always to make the best car that happens to be an EV, or an EV that happens to be the best car. That's the only way to achieve the goal of popularized EV. In the end you still helped save the environment whether that was your intention or not.

shop | 09. April 2013

You don't have to be an environmentalist to appreciate no exhaust. If you watch your spouse back out of the garage in the morning, you can breath in that nice ICE powered exhaust - you are so used to it it doesn't even register. But it sure isn't healthy. Multiply that by 1,000,000 or whatever your city size is - it sure would be nice to have cleaner air in the city, wouldn't it? Maybe with increased baseload (midnight to 6am) electricity demand we might get more nuclear plants built and reduce our air pollution from utilities too. And then walking downtown with silent cars zipping around would be great.

And yes, even ignoring all this, the S is just a great car.

alcassfast | 09. April 2013

I like the solar-panels-charging-car idea, myself.

bigdaddymak | 09. April 2013

My reasons (which I'm guessing applies to many of you as well):

1) The car is amazing and I wanted one
2) My wife would never go for an ICE at this price/comparable level of luxury and performance. It would be a sore issue for years. The only way I was ever going to get to buy a car in this class was if I could justify the cost with tax credits ($10K in CA) and the gas/energy cost savings ($2,500/year), as well as the myriad of non-cost advantages: drive in the carpool lane, park and charge free in a number of public places, clean the air, support an entrepreneurial American company, stop paying gas money to support groups who hate us, etc.

But really--I just wanted to drive this car every day.

Taking delivery in 2 weeks--can't wait!

EcLectric | 09. April 2013

I took the screen name 'EcLectric' because people interested in or buying Teslas are an eclectic group - some with wildly different political views.

I bought mine for a variety of reasons:

- I like the idea of a revolutionary drive-train
- Mid-life crisis-mobile
- As a kid, I used to get sick whenever my family went to the Los Angeles area for vacations
- Los Angeles smog has actually decreased over time even as the population grows due to improved smog control.
- I remember the 'gas shortage' in the 70s (remember odd and even license plates?)
- Crappy smog-controlled cars in the 80s (Cadillac 8-6-4 with sparking catalytic converter, anyone?)
- Consumer Reports liking one or two US made cars vs 20 Japanese cars
- AMC (need I say more?)

Brian H | 09. April 2013

Heh. The brain is the organ dedicated to producing means and justifications for doing what we want.

torst1 | 09. April 2013

Refreshingly honest and who's to say what reason is better then the next?
For sure it is easy to sit on a green horse and stamp on people with other views on things and I see you got your share of comments. But I guess you kind of expected that?

What I often find amusing is to watch what happens when someone claims to better then others. As soon as something can be taken as as a comment like that people become defensive or pure evil. Why is that?

So you had a great year and enough hard earned cash to treat yourself to a big boys toy. Well great you for you. You feel superior? Well you had a good year - you should. You are skeptic to the overall environmental impact cause of what goes in in parts of Asia and Africa. And you are in fact right to be. The smog alone rising in China is like London 100 years ago I am sure.

Well you've done a small part by buying green now, like it or not you are now part of the green movement. And your contribution is actually bigger now then what most people do. And look at bright side, at least you do not pollute locally.

Congrats on your new toy - enjoy your new green life :)

wbrown01 | 09. April 2013

I drive 80 miles round trip a day and before when I drove a
mid-size SUV the cost was $800/month in just gas. That is just $100 less than my Model S car note. And I get to drive a bad ass car. I never considered the green aspect. I have a middle class income, but the numbers made too much sense for me, the Model S save me big bucks. Lastly, with so few mechanical parts the cost to keep this car running will be a fraction of an ICE car.

pablodds | 09. April 2013

I didn't get mine because its electric. I got it because I firmly believe its a very very good car all around. And it's made in the USA!!!

cschock | 09. April 2013

I bought the car because it is awesome. And my midlife crisis (wife) likes it too!

riceuguy | 09. April 2013

If I were to phrase it poorly, my reasons would be largely the same as the original poster's:

1) Unusually good bonus (probably one-time!)
2) Mid-life crisis/40th birthday coming up
3) The damage being done to the environment by India, Russia, China, etc. is monumental, and my car choice won't change that; however, the more I read these forums, the more I realize that acceptance of a great electric car in the US will influence events worldwide for years to come
4) I put down the deposit expecting to test drive it for fun and get my money back; I had cancelled my Leaf reservation months before because electric seemed silly and impractical. After the test drive my wife told me to get the car and said she wished she made me as happy as the test drive (no reflection on her...I'd just look stupid with a Tesla-style grin on my face all day!)
5) I don't like American cars. Correction: I didn't like American cars until Tesla.
6) I'm REALLY not green. In college, I once (inadvertently) threw a can in the recycle bin, and without thinking picked it up and tossed it in the trash (unfortunately, that was in front of the head of the recycling club...nasty lecture!). I like plastic bags and plastic water bottles, too. I know, not a typical Tesla owner!

My point here is that Tesla nailed it. There are a few million people like most of the early adopters who see it as a great environmental choice and statement. But most are like me (and yes, I acknowledge that we're worse--not better!!), and won't save nearly enough money on gas to make it a justifiable purpose, but I'm happy to plunk down the money for things like having a full "tank" in the morning and a giant touchscreen and performance that just, well, gives you a Tesla grin! I got to drive a client's Lamborghini last year, and the thrill didn't compare to the spaceship-like silence of the Model S. Most people will happily spend more than they should on a car, but not to make a statement.

All that said, I absolutely believe that the US needs to shake its dependency on foreign oil (and fossil fuels in general), and I'm thrilled to be a part of that, at least. But mostly I just love that this car is sooooo much better in so many ways (silent, instant, massively torquey acceleration, over the air updates, very few moving parts, no more oil changes, no more gas, etc.). Oh, and I do love that Tesla owners seem to be one giant family, even if we have very different reasons for getting this car!

Andre-nl | 10. April 2013


"seriously people we make no difference."

You probably never vote, since your vote has never and will never decide an election ;).

If we collectively all believe that, this world will never change. If we collectively reject that notion, anything can be achieved. It is a self fulfilling prophecy either way.

"Please pay a trip to Africa or South Asia"

Surely those Asians say the same thing about SUV-driving Americans :)

If you think environmental action is needed, then take action because it is the right thing to do. If you think the environment is fine or you simply don't care, then there is no need to excuse yourself by suggesting others are the cause and you have no part to play.

Because you can not change the world on your own doesn't mean it is futile to undertake anything. There are no silver bullets, the boring reality is that this world changes one small step at a time. Each of us has a choice for that step to be in the right direction or the wrong direction (and what is 'right' and what is 'wrong' is your personal choice, I don't want to start a debate on that).

"…millions of motorbikes, " "with comfortable westerners driving luxury sedans"

The largest market for electric two wheelers is China. Tesla plays an important role in the development of affordable, reliable, high energy density automotive batteries. That WILL have a positive effect on the electric motorbike since it depends on that very same technology. And so, each Tesla customer makes a small contribution towards the demise of those noisy, smelly, polluting motorbikes. You made that contribution. That was your step to take and you took it. The world is better off for it (imho).

NOPetrol | 11. April 2013

Thanks to all the cool responses except imherkimer, the dude who wants to make love to his "potentially future" MS ( Please stick with your Acura, we don't need headlines of the naked man in his Tesla on the 5 or 95.

mallynb | 12. April 2013

The real reason I'm getting a TESLA? No brainer! Elon Musk!!

FLsportscarenth... | 12. April 2013

Non treehugger reasons:

$$ The car actually does pay for itself in fuel and repair savings if you keep it for a major portion of its lifetime.

$$ Pre paid fuel for long distance driving for life, yipeee! Road trip time!

No other car can claim these (Volt comes close on the first but can not claim second)

Will never buy another ICE car!

Buy american, buy Tesla!

stimeygee | 12. April 2013

I'm buying it because this car will change the world, and I want to be a part of it.

It's the first electric car that is practical for real world usage. With the success of this car, further innovations will come. And once the range is doubled, the charging speed tripled, and the price of the battery quartered.... Well, game over for ICE automobiles. And once that happens, the electric battery and electric engine technologies will spread into other forms of transportation and manufacturing. And over time the market will demand advances in electricity generation that go far beyond fossil fuels, not because its nice but because its the only say to meet demand. And thanks to that, the world will look very different from what we see today. And we (or our children or grandchildren) will look back on this and say my grandpa had the first Model S. Just like I can say that my great grandpa had the first Model T. (And yes he actually did.)

There's a reason Tesla gave it the name that they did. They were looking to history. And so am I.

Think I'm overstating it? Could be. But I believe I'm right.

stimeygee | 12. April 2013

Meant to add:

And if I'm wrong, and it doesn't change the world? Then all I end up with is a totally f'n awesome car. I think I can make that sacrifice.

sthornton | 12. April 2013

+1 @ stimyg

bb0tin | 13. April 2013

+1 Andre-nl
We are all living in a world which has tended to get better as time has gone on. It did this because individuals decided that they would try to do their bit to make it so.

TikiMan | 13. April 2013

I am FAR more into my MS to snub my nose at the oil industry, and their massive tyranny of our federal government that has cost us trillions of tax dollars having to fight for their oil-wars.

I am a true believer in American Freedom, and free-market. Having to be reliant on oil is not FREEDOM, it's a tyranny. Tesla breaks that tyranny, and I love them for that! :-)

Brian H | 13. April 2013

Heh. Hardly "breaks". If your oil-dependent products vanished, 90% of your possessions and food would disappear. Or more.

cerjor | 13. April 2013

At 74, this is my mid-life crisis.

Brian H | 13. April 2013

Heh. You mean you just naturally feel superior even without that excuse/justification? ;)

Steve Proteau | 13. April 2013

I bought mine because:

1. Quiet. If they ever mandate synthetic noise, I'm no longer excited about EVs.
2. Super responsive and fast. Drives like a high powered quiet hovercraft, or magic carpet.
3. I had the cash sitting in my brokerage account. Wife said "what are you going to do with that money anyway? Spend it, and get the top model while you're at it!". Couldn't believe my ears so I jumped!

GeirT | 13. April 2013

My approach to this is way simpler, not trying to "save the world" at all (not oblivious to improved local pollution though) but to take advantage of a very fascinating and ground breaking application of a new technology, packaged in a wonderful design (so no Leaf for me!) at the same time screw the tax authorities for about USD 150,000 in direct import taxes and fees + take advantage of all the other silly support programs such as no road tax, no road toll, no petrol tax ( guess what the taxes are on USD10 per gallon), free parking and free charging. Selfish? Of course I am! As everyone else. I vote with my money on the car purchase as I do with buying food, clothes and everything else I invest or consume. To buy a USD 100,000 car to save the planet? If that is your real intention, get a bicycle - or a Leaf - and hand the rest of your money over to IPCC or a rainforest scheme.

Brian H | 14. April 2013


The car's the thing ...

A Model S needs no justifications or excuses for existence!

Totto | 14. April 2013

@NOPetrol: My reasons are exactly the same as yours.

TikiMan | 14. April 2013


I completely disagree. Up until the Model S, no one on Earth had a choice of driving a fast, luxury, roomy, exotic-looking vehicle that didn't run on gasoline. Worse, our choices were limited to very poor MPG vehicles, that relied even more on the highly subsidized raw crude refined byproduct.

I understand raw crude oil is still used in many different products (plastics, solvents, et al), however, all of the products that use raw crude oil, all can be made using non-fossil alternatives. On the other hand, even with all the various products we used on a daily based that contain raw crude oil, only gasoline and heating oil, do we see such a corrupt tyranny of manipulation. It not like you walk into your local toy store, and see a digital price-tag on your kids plastic toys that change every few hours, based on the market price of plastics made from raw-crude.

Up until the first reasonably priced automobiles were invented by Henry Ford, gasoline was a valueless waste by-product that was actually dumped into landfills. Only after John D. Rockefeller capitalized on the waste byproduct as a secondary highly volatile fuel for the ICE engine, did it actually gain a value, and begin to be saved and refined.

After gasoline revolunitized the automobile industry, only then did it become the best and worst thing to ever happen to this planet in history.

Remember, the terror attacks on 9/11 would have NEVER happened had it not been for the monopoly fuel known as gasoline. That is MORE than enough for me to want to own a Tesla!!!

ziggy | 14. April 2013

I bought the car because it brings competition to the oil industry for the first time in many decades.. economic freedom is the keystone to other freedoms.

And I hate what the corrupt oil industry is doing to us.

Brian H | 14. April 2013

That's the tangled string=ball of your personal priorities and motivations. But the MS has none of them; it is a superb vehicle and is value+ as a vehicle without considering a single one of your listed considerations.

Brian H | 14. April 2013

typo: string-ball

LMB | 15. April 2013

Right, Brian H. But of course, this thread is for sharing personal priorities and motivations. Unless I am mistaken.

bb0tin | 15. April 2013

Brian H - You only have the choice to buy a Tesla S because Elon Musk had electric transport as one of his goals for a brighter future for humanity. He did not pursue Tesla Motors just to make a superb car.

EcLectric | 15. April 2013


You're kidding, right? From what I have read, Elon had exactly that in mind. To paraphrase a Tesla video (Franz von Holzhausen) " ... you don't create such a car by accident..."

DerekCrosby | 15. April 2013

I'm with bigdaddymak, I needed a new car, the old one's manufacturer is going out of business** (Mitsubishi) and I care about the environment and all that, but I'm a car guy by heart, and I needed a Car I could get into the Car Pool Lane (CA) with, and something that didn't suck as a vehicle. The S is all that and more.

**All the dealerships around me are closing the closest is 30+ Miles, and they're crooks, the next is 40-50 Miles away.

Nantang | 15. April 2013

The beauty of Tesla Motors is that they demonstrate how one can improve life for all of us by developing green technologies that don't assume one has to compromise. The Roadster and Model S both outperform similarly priced gas-powered vehicles by a long shot, and they offer additional advantages that generally far outweigh the learning curve or other trade-offs. Even someone who is convinced global warming is a myth, hates hippies, and was beaten up by trees as a kid will have plenty of reasons to love Tesla's cars, the first of which being to tell places like Saudi Arabia, "up yours."

bb0tin | 15. April 2013

Kidding? Absolutely not.
I am talking about Elon's reason for being involved in the Tesla company. It was, from many interviews I have seen with him, and articles I have read about him, because of his desire to make a brighter future for humanity. His main goals included space travel (hence SpaceX), renewable energy (hence SolarCity) and electic transport(hence Tesla).
He realises that electric cars will not be accepted until they are at least as good as, and even better than, ICE cars. He therefore set out to make a series of supurb electric cars.
Creating a superb electric car was a result of trying to make a better future for humanity. In was not an end unto itself.

Brian H | 15. April 2013

Elon knew he couldn't sell just green, and succeed; he had to sell "best", because then everyone would be a potential customer. So he did.

bb0tin | 15. April 2013

Success can be both 'philanthropic' and financial. Elon has stated that with his space adventures, by which I mean helping to get man to mars, he did not expect it to be a financial success. Although SpaceX has turned out to be a great success as a business, it was not why it was founded, and it would have been considered a success even it turned out not to be financially viable. I expect Tesla was always meant to be a financial success in order to be a 'philanthropic' success. I believe it is besmirching his motives to imply that the primary driver for his work is just financial.

hademarco | 17. April 2013

I bought the car because I'm a total geek. You have to admit that this car has what the geeks love. However, now I'm the cool geek that people envy. Great feeling. Seriously I didn't think of how cool the car would be when I put my reservation in about 1.5 years ago. Now I'm cruising down the street and people stare and give me the thumbs up. Some kid on the street yelled "cool car" as I was driving down PCH. Tesla grin?.....Oh yeah!

EcLectric | 17. April 2013


You're right. I was confusing Franz' motivations with Elon's. Franz is a car guy.