More on the Tesla Tiff

More on the Tesla Tiff

. Damn! I should have cut a commission deal with Tesla (TSLA) before I published my story on their amazing electric vehicle a few days ago (click here for “My Take on the Tesla Tiff” at ). I have since received a dozen emails from readers telling me they have jumped on the waiting list with a $5,000 deposit, which I understand has been shortened to five months.

In the meantime, the company’s mercurial CEO, the South African programming genius, Elon Musk, has announced the firm’s Q4, 2012 earnings. The loss came in larger than expected at 65 cents a share, versus an expected 53 cents. But revenues jumped from a projected $298 million to $306 million. Musk is confident that Q1, 2013 will be profitable, as will the full 2013-year, and that a 25% profit margin will be realized.

Much of the loss was due to massive overtime wages for workers, with many clocking 70-hour weeks as they struggle to meet overwhelming demand. There are still 6,000 on the waiting list for the new Model S sedan. Musk says that the company is on target to manufacture 20,000 vehicles this year. Most of the orders have been for the high end, 85kWh, 300 mile range vehicle that starts at $72,400.

I have been deluged with questions for readers about the car’s performance. Here are the answers to a few:

The times to obtain a fully charged battery from flat that I have recorded from various power sources are:

45 minutes – 440 volt public super charger
7 hours – 220 volt, 40 amp plug in my garage
77 hours – standard 110 volt home wall outlet

All public charges, from Whole Foods, public garages, and movie theaters, etc., are provided for free by a company called ChargePoint (click here for the link at ). There you can view their national network of 10,954 public charging stations. When I visit my home at Lake Tahoe, where overnight temperatures go well below zero, the company recommends that I keep the car plugged in overnight, just to keep it warm.

No, I am not indirectly running this car on high polluting coal. Notice that the lights in your home turn on in the middle of the night, even though no one usually wants power then. Utilities must generate massive amounts of power that gets wasted in order to maintain “grid integrity”, a network that makes electricity available to us 24/7.

How much is wasted? Enough to run all 250 million cars in the US on electric power. This is why they give it away nearly for free if you charge between midnight and 7:00 AM (4.7 cents/kw versus 40 cents in my case). I am simply using power that has already been generated that otherwise would go unused.

Tesla advertises a maximum range of 265 miles, which is based on an EPA five cycle testing standard. But you can really get 300 miles with conservative driving, which is more than your bladder can stand. One 45-minute charge at Harris Ranch gets me from San Francisco to San Diego, some 500 miles. For longer trips I fly my own plane, go commercial, or drive my other car.

I’m sure more questions will come in, and I will answer them periodically. Or you can call Tesla directly at 877-798-3752.

For the pictures, graphs, and tables that go with this post, please go to

GeekEV | 14 March 2013

I call spam. Elaborate and well constructed spam, but spam never-the-less...

frmercado | 14 March 2013

I had a good time reading your story and even forwarded to couple of friends.

ian | 14 March 2013

I'm curious if the OP is really an owner. If so, they definitely need someone to proofread their blog posts as there's quite a few inaccuracies.

He get's Broder's name correct the first couple times but then in the third paragraph refers to him as Bradford.

The car is a Tesla Model S, not a Tesla S-1.

It has a 17 inch touch screen, not an 18 inch.

I don't know what the OP considers a light car but his continued references to the S being light is kinda funny considering it weighs 4700 lbs. If he can make those performance tires on the 21" wheels last 60,000 miles I'll be very impressed.

He also conveniently forgets that there's a $600/yr maintenance fee when comparing the operating costs. Not to mention that not all public chargers are free. I believe both Chargepoint and Blink have fees related to them. Did he mean the Tesla Supercharger network?

Otherwise, I agree, a nice review of the S.

Brian H | 14 March 2013

Also, the 45 minutes charge time at 440V is wrong; the rate tapers off in the last 20%, down to about the 40A level.

Pungoteague_Dave | 15 March 2013

Comes across as an uninformed self-important stock promoter. I hereby put up a private thread challenge - sbronte, if you have a Model S, start a private thread to prove it.

Pungoteague_Dave | 15 March 2013

He also infringes numerous copyrights by cutting and pasting the pictures into his blog.