To anyone who stretched their financial limits and comfortzone to get the you regret it or would you do it again?

To anyone who stretched their financial limits and comfortzone to get the you regret it or would you do it again?

I am talking about the people who previously would have never paid over $49k for a new car, either by choice and principle, or by the fact they couldnt "really" afford it. Not talking about the people who were already driving $80k plus cars and decided to switch to MS.

The ones that are making strong budgetary sacrifices to attain this car. Even with all the gas savings, its a fair chunk to spend on a car.

Maybe you had to resort to taking out some equity in your home line of credit, or sacrificing a annual vacation, or selling off your beloved sports team season tickets......

How does it feel after a couple of months after the 'novelty' has worn off. Regrets? Sorrow over an impulse buy perhaps?

Or definitely worth it despite the sacrifice? | September 20, 2013

Over twice what I have previously paid for any car. Got the car in December. Still the best car I have ever driven. Still think I got the car for less than it is worth. It's a big monthly car payment but I can't bring myself to sell the TSLA I picked up at 38 per share. The "novelty" doesn't wear off...the appreciation actually increases over time.

EJH | September 20, 2013

The red P85 was three times what I would normally have spent on a car, but it was also the first car that ever really interested me.
4 months and 7000 Km later, there is no end to the good things that I can say about this car. I too bought stock when I ordered ($28.80), and have covered over half of the price of the car, and I missed the last two price increases, so my "out of comfort zone" leap turns out to be the best car move that I have ever made.

I do not expect anyone purchasing now to get those same advantages, but who knows?

Model S is a legendary vehicle, but it is still a vehicle and as such is a depreciating asset.

Making sacrifices and living beyond one's means are two different things, and I would not recommend re-financing your home for any car.

AmpedRealtor | September 20, 2013

The most expensive car I had before my Model S was my Highlander at about $54,000. So the Model S is just about double. I've only had the Model S about a month (made my first payment already), and so far nothing but joy.

tylerhen | September 20, 2013

The most I had spent on a car before my MS was $7000 for a used Kia Rio. Yes, you could say I made a bit of a jump. Absolutely no regrets at all. I justified it by saying I spend an hour a day in a car commuting, I should make the most of it and have some fun. I have had a lot of fun over the last 5 months. Also helps that I grabbed a bunch of TSLA for $37 when I ordered the car so that has helped pay for it.

ausdma | September 20, 2013

I haven't bought mine yet but I have never paid more than 45k for a car, mainly on principle (principal? can never keep those straight!).

I'm thinking this will be the exception.

GeekEV | September 20, 2013

I stretched a bit, and it is far and away the most expensive car I've ever bought, but no - I don't regret it one bit. It brings a smile to my face every single day. No joke.

carlk | September 20, 2013

Everything is relative and how to adjust your financial priority. I don't think anyone would starve their children in order to buy an expensive car. It may comes down to skip a vacation or two or even postpone the retirement a while longer. Obviously a lot of people think it's a very fair trade.

NomoDinos | September 20, 2013

This will be more than twice what I would have otherwise spent for my car based on principle (although the wife got a gas-guzzling Range Rover "to protect the baby"). It seemed ridiculous to me to spend what amounts to the down-payment for a house on a depreciating asset like a car...

Tesla is different somehow, and I am already at peace with spending so much on a car (even though I haven't gotten it yet). I really believe in the company and in what they are trying to accomplish. Also, as a very very small stockholder, I've calculated that I am paying myself back $.0000005 with the purchase :)

@ausdma - for my best Brian H impression, "the princiPAL is your PAL". That's the only way I can remember it.

Mathew98 | September 20, 2013

@Kaboom - You already know my story. I strolled into the showroom to checkout what the hoopla about EV named Model S without any intentions of buying it. All I wanted was a joyride.

I would never imagine the test drive pushed me to pay more than the last three new cars combined and order the MS.

Principles will change over times. All it took was an mini rocket launch test drive to change mine.

This is the best dang purchase I've ever made as I intend to drive my MS for as least a decade or more.

cfOH | September 20, 2013

I've posted this here before, but my P85+ cost me more than all 6 of my previous cars did combined, with my most expensive car costing $32,500. So, yes, this car was well outside my comfort zone...and, more importantly, my wife's. ;-)

But, and maybe this is the post-hoc rationalization talking, I'm glad I did it every day.

Today, about 90% of the way home on my afternoon commute, I realized I was unhappy. I kept trying to figure out why...then I realized it was because I was going to have to get out my car in a few minutes. So I turned the opposite way from home, took a 10-minute detour, enjoyed the time, and was better when I finally pulled in the driveway.

I call it Teslatherapy. ;-)

breading | September 20, 2013

More than I ever thought I would pay for a car and not one regret after paying it. This car is like therapy after a long day at work--punch the accelerator and leave everything behind literally and metaphorically.

redacted | September 20, 2013

I've only had it about two weeks.

My most expensive car to date was less than 1/4 the price.

The GPS is pretty worthless - service tells me it's a software problem to be fixed in the next release. My $3700 (installed) HPWC is limited by the car to 40 amps. When I talk to service they say they will fix it remotely, they never call back and it's never fixed. But god, I love that car. It's like a psycho girlfriend you know you should leave but you never will. Touch the pedal and it jumps like a startled cat, it drives smoothly and quietly, it does everything a car should do better than anything I've ever seen. For all its problems, it's unique and it's better than anything.

Yes, I would do it again.

Flyshacker | September 20, 2013

Based on the above comments it's astonishing what Tesla Motors has accomplished with the Model S. Phenomenal owner satisfaction. If they can keep this up, they will have the world auto market to themselves.

Mine will be here next year. Tax reasons for the delay. | September 20, 2013

+1 EJH

AustinAnthony | September 20, 2013

I have never bought a new car in my 40+ year life and never paid over $40k for a car. Had the Tesla model S not come along, I would have bought a used Lexus LS460 for ~$40k to replace my 2004 LS430, which I bought used for under $38k. I spent over $80k for my Model S 60 and have driven it for 3.5 months and 7,200+ miles and not a single regret. Best car I could have ever bought. My wife thought I was crazy to spend so much and fought me on it. She knows my life-long dream car is a Ferrari and asked me if I had to choose between buying a Tesla Model S and a Ferrari which one would I buy. Before she even finished the question, I responded Tesla, no question!
My input is if this is within your affordability, buy it, but don't get a second mortgage or expose yourself/family to possible financial hardships. They are coming out with a Gen III in 3 years so save up to be the first to put a deposit on that one. Good Luck!

Sudre_ | September 20, 2013

My car was three times what I would spend on a car and I bought a 60 with few options. Worth every cent.... heck I feel I got it for a steal. My last car was a 24K fully loaded 2001 Saturn L300 and I felt like I got ripped off after driving it for a few years.

I was hoping to trade in three years from now and get the latest and greatest but my wife now likes the car so much she wants her own. She's out with the car now.

Even tho it will never pay for the extra expense I love the savings because I don't need oil changes or gas or any of the other hassle of an ICE.... Not to mention the hassle of the sales pitch for all the extra crap I never bought but the lube place would always strongly recommend, whether it was the dealer, local mechanic or Jiffy Lube.

I got my Storm (wife named her) in February. If I had it to do all over again I would stretch a little more and at least get the 85. Turns out I am saving about $200 a month in gas savings alone so that makes the car payment easier.

bogartsdad | September 20, 2013


Most I ever spent on a car was ~$30K for an Accord back in 2009. I usually keep my cars 10 years or more.

Photos of the Model S caught my eye last year. While on vacation, stopped at a Tesla Showroom to see first hand, was planning to purchase later this year for xmas present to myself. Test drove and purchased that day.

Broke three rules:
1. Never buy an American made car..
2. Never pay more for a car than my first house.
3. Never drive a better car than your client.

Been driving for 3 months - NOT ONE REGRET.

Now I always take the long way home!

madbuns | September 20, 2013

+1 @bogartsdad

Rules were meant to be broken...big time...!

I love my car - and paid nearly 2.5x what I have ever spent on a car in the past. I would do it again. Best car I have ever driven.

15th day, 1,520mi and going strong...


lasalaleo | September 20, 2013

I have never bought a car. My first car was a hand me down from my dad which lasted only for a few years when I got it (high school). My current car right now is a reliable Hyundai Sonata '09, also bought by my dad (gift for finishing med school - about $23k). After finishing residency, I had planned on purchasing an Audi (A6, A7, or R8) - dream car. A co-worker (co-resident at the time) bought an Audi A7 and I was like, "He beat me to it! If I get an Audi, then it'll be like I'm copying him." No hard feelings but I was so glad he bought it because a few months after that I heard about the Tesla Model S and have been hooked on the Tesla drug! Can't wait til next year to get my Model S, and finally buy a car with my own money! | September 20, 2013

My MS was double what I have spent in the past and I would never spend this kind of money on an ICE. The gas savings really helped take the bite out of the car payment. I love my Tesla and don't regret the decision, but, at the end of the day, its just a car and I would not put my family's finances at risk for it. Eat out out a little less often? Sure. Take out a second mortgage or tap into the rainy day fund? No way.

As someone said up-thread, the novelty has to worn off I came to appreciate the MS the more I drive it.


Cattledog | September 20, 2013

Do it again.

Doing it again (Model X Reservation).

tes-s | September 20, 2013

About 3x the cost of our 3 cars when whey were new - 2001 Acura 3.5RL, 2006 Toyota Sienna, 2008 Prius. Each cost in the neighborhood of $30k. Paying that much for a car was more difficult for us emotionally than financially.

No regrets. Already thinking about a Model X as our next car in a year or two.

Kaboom | September 20, 2013


quite the consensus here.

Everyone unanimously happy with the purchase.

I think that an extra $1200 in your pocket every month instead of a car can go a long way towards happiness in other things.

So i while i did expect most people still standing behind the car, i wasnt expecting 100%.

Good.....Darn Good!!!!

williamweiss21 | September 20, 2013

Before owning an S, I knew the "price of everything and the value of nothing"....

bareyb | September 20, 2013

Most expensive car I've had was probably my current one. A Lexus GX470. They go for about $60k these days (mine is a 2004). It's been ten years since I even saw a car I was interested in buying. I was "satisfied" with my GX but it certainly didn't capture my imagination like the Tesla has.

At any rate, I've got one on order. Started out with a 60, then up to a S85 and now I"m looking at going P85. I have the cash and it won't be a hardship, but it's still tough for me to spend that much on a "car". In the end, I believe in what Tesla is doing and I feel I will be a customer for many years. I even bought stock in the company and I've only ever done that once (AAPL). So yeah, I think it's worth it and I'm proud to contribute to the cause.

Brian H | September 20, 2013

To extend your example: "The principal will be your pal, but not if you offend against his principles!"

c.bussert67 | September 20, 2013

I went way out of the comfort zone. Originally I had spotted the Model S platform when it was an alpha and they were saying it MIGHT get 300 miles to a charge and it MIGHT go 0-60 in under 6 seconds, it MIGHT have retractable door handles... It SHOULD cost about 50k...Reservation is only 5k.
So I convinced my wife that I wanted to go for it, and she agreed. Then it was released that there would be a 'Signature' edition for 80k. Reservation 40k. Oh and there was only to be 1000 made. I called Tesla and asked if there were any left. They said I had a few months to get one at the rate they were selling. I didn't have that kind of cash. So I sold my prized '67 Mustang because I knew this was the next iconic car like the Mustang had been. I immediately went to Tesla with my check and got our Signature reservation. Knowing this car was going to push our finances to the limit, I bought some stock with $1000 from my savings for $27/share, hoping it would help relieve the stress for paying so much for a car. Then Elon had to drop the bomb on the performance option. This would be like the Big Block muscle car I sold to get the S. I so wanted that, but it wasn't in the cards...yet. I ate $.86 frozen meals for months saving every penny I could. I knew about when my car would be built and I had to hit the 100k mark before then, otherwise I couldn't check that option off. I made it!
I got it. It was tough. I have never felt so proud and now seeing what it has become, I only wish had more money to spare for stock!
This car is going to change the world and 30 years from now it will be the car you drive and people that didn't buy one will wish they did!
I drive to Vegas for free now. I love it! My wife still can't believe we pulled it off and she thanks me every time she drives it!

earlyretirement | September 20, 2013

I can easily afford the car so that part of the question doesn't apply to me but like many, this is by far the most expensive car I've purchased. I was never a "car guy" before I bought this car. I just mostly looked at cars as getting from point A to point B. I found them to be the worst investments. Oh and I didn't enjoy driving.

Prior to this I've always had nice cars. The most expensive car before this was my previous car which was an Audi Q7 TDI loaded. I think with TTL I spent about $85,000. With TTL on the P85 I spent $125,000+ so it was a big difference.

But it was totally worth it! I enjoy driving now and blown away by the technology. Still, I don't think anyone should be buying the car if they can't truly and comfortably afford it.

riceuguy | September 21, 2013

I also stretched to get mine and was sure I'd feel pangs of guilt or at least regret. I was soooo wrong. I'm mostly regretting not spending the extra $10k for the 85! I can't imagine NOT having this car, and even after 4 months there's anticipation every time I get into the car. Crazy.

Mark K | September 21, 2013

Sort of the flip side of the question -

I added up how much I've spent on fancy Mercedes models over the years ... well over a million dollars.

This car actually cost less, yet it is in fact far better. I've never had a car bring this much joy on so many levels.

Compelling enough that we bought two of them.

I have long been into cars, but when I hear the beautiful stories above about people who don't normally care for fancy cars - skimping elsewhere to buy into this new, more hopeful future ... I get teary-eyed.

The goodness in this car is universal, and it brings people together. It is hope manifest in a car, and it tugs at your heart in a way that completely transcends money.

Cindy I II III | September 21, 2013

I am not a car person. Before MS, the three cars I bought for myself = $2, 21, 23k, and no car at ANY RPICE rated higher than 4 out of 10 for me. The MS landed at 9 after the test drive, which gained instant approval from the mind to spend >$80k. Every time I drove Nelson, a slice of heaven presented itself...

Today, at the McDonald pick up window, a very young employee handed me the food and said: "Nice car!"
"It's made in America" thinking he didn't know what it was, like most people I met in New Jersey.
"It's my dream car!" with a big smile on his face, looking fully informed and fully determined.
He made my day.

Needless to say, I'm filled with gratitude, and no regret.

jchangyy | September 21, 2013


Prior vehicle: Camry hybrid. great car, but boring. paid $27k.

Most paid for a car: my wife's Acura MDX at $42k.

Bit of a stretch to buy my MS 85 with options.

No regrets, but do feel guilty having spent that much money on a car. Love it though. 8 months and 8000 miles later and few issues along the way.

Unlike others, I probably would not buy another model S in the future. will likely return to a cheap ICE (Accord, Sonata, Camry, etc) only because I would like to retire early.

Luclyluciano | September 21, 2013

$100k is too much for most people to ratioalize unless of course you are in the multiple six figure income bracket. At the end of the day, it's one expensive and very fast depreciating asset.
Make sure your retirement plan is rock solid and rainy day reserve is in place and enjoy your splurge because that's what it is unless of course, you use a ton of gas per month.

T3SLA | September 21, 2013

Stretching financing is subjective. I'll be making a monthly car payment now, something I haven't done in 10 years.

Why now?
No car I have test driven or owned in 10 years has been worth making a car payment. I paid cash for my cars and bought only what I needed at the time as the tool it is / was.

The model s is more than a tool for me. Yes, it's a great family car, no dripping toxins, no toxic fumes, no trips to the toxic maintenance facilities (service and gas). It is also a toy. Test drive one if you haven't. If you don't find pure pleasure, then maybe it's not for you.

Stretch? Not as much as it seems. No buying gas, so fueling is cheaper. Probably less maintenance costs (I'm going with warranty only).

DCTesla | September 21, 2013

I love my Model S. No question about that.

As far as "stretching financially" is concerned however, there's no question that one should NOT STRETCH to buy a depreciating asset such as a car.

I don't plan to go on a "what's wrong with America" tirade here but let's not forget the FINANCIAL CRISIS! Millions of people bought things they could not afford!!!

Be responsible, save and invest your money wisely and make a sound decision to buy a car when you comfortably do so without compromising your financial disipline.

thranx | September 21, 2013

I could afford equivalent cars, but never bothered with them because I regarded them as nothing more than overpriced transportation: a device, a tool. I've been interested in other cars, though.

This, however, is the first car that I think is interested in me.

dramingly | September 21, 2013

The problem with the replies on this thread is that there's almost nobody who really stretched to afford the car!

I've said this before and got beaten up a bit, but this car is by all means a luxury. Like all luxury items, the purchase probably should not affect your daily life to any significant extent. With rare exceptions, every car depreciates to $0 over time. The arguments about gas and maintenance are sort of weak to me. Unless you drive some crazy amount, you will never make up the money you spend on gas savings. My Subarus and Hondas have never cost more than $600 a year to maintain.

Technology like this will likely depreciate even more quickly (I used to have a drawer full of laughable cell phones that were cutting edge less than 2 years old).

All of this being said, I'm picking up my car in one week!

romainiacWV | September 21, 2013

Agree with some of the last assessments. I think to many, this car was more of a "mental" stretch than it was a financial one. It has attracted a lot of the more "conservative". Car buyers than a typical car of its class. Just because of the multiple ways it can attract you to the car. I count myself in that club. Prior to this car i drove a hand-me down hail dented Pontiac. Have since finished residency and the car was affordable financially but I would have NEVER paid this much for an audi, BMW etc. next car would probably have been a Hyundai genesis (lightly used) as I have always looked at buying new cars as a fools game (huge depreciation). This car, and this company is different. I take so much pride in owning and being a part of what feels like the beginning of the EV movement. Feel that in some small way it will be an investment in changing the world for the better. Not often you can do that and drive the best car ever made at the same time.

kidheme | September 21, 2013

I have bought 6 new cars in my life. Three Oldsmobiles (the first - a 1984 Cutlass Supreme cost $11,360 exactly), two Fords (OK one was a Volvo when Ford owned it) and a Jeep. The most expensive was about $35K. I easily justify the expense for many of the reasons that everyone else does. But I come from a family of machinists and other blue color workers, some of whom worked at the Linden New Jersey GM assembly plant (the assembly plant and my uncles are gone). I sometimes think about them and how they would love and appreciate this car also. Its priceless.

Bennett R. | September 21, 2013

I bought a 60kwh, with a regular roof. It was $45k more than I had ever spent on a car before (my previous car was an 2004 Infiniti G35). When I look back on the purchase, sometime I wish I got the 85kwh, and sometimes I don't. Sometimes I wish I had the pano roof, and sometimes I don't. But I NEVER EVER regret the fact that I made the purchase. It doesn't even cross my mind for a fleeting moment.

jackhub | September 21, 2013

Spent almost three times the most I'd spent on a car before. A real stretch. After nine months with my Model S, I'd do it again in a heart beat.

Brian H | September 21, 2013

"and other blue color workers" -- and don't even know that it's "blue collar workers"? Dubious.

RedShift | September 22, 2013

Wasn't a 'stretch' per se, since I would have gone for an M5 in lieu, but it is the most expensive car I purchased.

Absolutely thrilled to be driving this car. In fact, I'd say it brought the joy of driving back!

Kaboom | September 22, 2013

Loving all these positive comments!

MS love both pre and post the purchase.

However, let me throw a wrinkle into this:

MS is really the only choice for a quality EV today, and hence the 'funnelling' of many towards this new age car, and trying to join the club and overpaying to do so.

What if in the next 3 years other companies offer good quality EV vehicles at half the cost? Would that change your sentiment?

Flyshacker | September 22, 2013

This is what the old car companies don't get when they plan to offer a competing product. Everybody here wants to turn the page: new century, new tech, new commitment, new redesign from the ground up. A competing product from GM will be a retrofit, buttons on the dash, and you would be handing over your money to a company that still makes ICE cars. Everybody here wants to support a new vision, totally new product, investment in the future and a new innovative company. Old car companies don't get that.

jefflw76 | September 22, 2013

My MSP is consuming over a quarter of my take home pay. Would I do it again....yes but in a different color. Money aside, I looked at this purchase as a leap of faith that this would be a great vehicle. For the most part it has been albeit a few issues along the way that we're handle very well. I Love cars a lot and have always modified them to make them my own and the MS is no exemption. So living paycheck to paycheck is a decision I made to have a revolutionary car in both performance and sustainability and to be part of an evolution of the auto industry.

eking | September 22, 2013

Kaboom, there is no question that the new market created by Tesla's MS will within a few years be another commodity. Every Tier 1 car manufacturer is working on engineering their $90K + answer to the Tesla MS. But if a person wants to own this century's version of the Model T, (assuming they aren't going to kill themselves financially to do it) the car to get is the Model S.

JC1 | September 22, 2013

My current car is a 95 Toyota and it cost me 28K when I bought it new. In today's dollars, that's 43K. I just recently placed an order for a P85 that is around 3 times what I paid for my Toyota.

Was it worth it? I don't know as I haven't received it yet. But I can say that the cost of the car is more than my annual salary and I'm not financing it either.

My view is that if I can't outright pay for the car, then I shouldn't be buying it. I don't believe in car loans.

Anyone stretching themselves financially just to buy this car because it is the car of the year, won multiple awards, got the highest rating in Consumer Reports, is the safest car in the world, looks beautiful, is electric, is American, is Car v2.0 with technology surrounding it, is one of the quietest cars, has alien-like acceleration, etc, is just downright stupid.

Oh wait... that'd be me...

hillcountryfun | September 22, 2013

JC1 +1!!

reitmanr | September 22, 2013


My home town Linden- know what you are talking about.

Prior cars: Vettes, Lincolns, Mercedes, Taurus, Honda, SVO Mustang, etc etc-- many different cars. I raced Vettes in SCCA- much excitement, no money left over afterwards. No car was a game changer. The MS is!
9000 miles and loving each drive. Loving the socializing produced by the MS, with owners and the curious.
My wife wants to wait for the model E- a smaller car.
Obviously- this is way more expensive than any prior car, and clearly worth it from every perspective.:)