P85 Performance First Drive Comments

P85 Performance First Drive Comments

Like many of you, I had been researching the Model S for some time but until today hadn't driven one. Yes, this is a game changer. Think private Lear Jet whoosh instead of TurboProp drone. Or magnetic catapult roller coaster vs. wooden clackity clack traditional. Or high speed Sears Tower elevator vs. department store version. It really is indescribable until experienced first hand. After the first few disorienting accelerations, you quickly adjust to the lack of engine growl and start realizing this is the way it's "supposed" to be. Fit, finish, style, etc are all equivalent to a high end German import; what sets it apart is the gargantuan, silent, instant torque rocket strapped to the wheels. I have never, ever, enjoyed a car as much as this. So what do I normally drive? An M5. All that's left is convincing the wife...

Bighorn | 13 July 2013

Great to hear since I've not driven the P version and have one arriving soon. Big M5 fan, so the analogies are great to hear.

lolachampcar | 13 July 2013

Welcome to the club.

carlk | 13 July 2013

You're absolutely right about this is the way it supposed to be. Can't think of a reason people would want to switch to the noisy, smelly and sluggish ICE car if the EVs are the only cars we know.

soren | 13 July 2013

There have been so many threads similar to this one. As I'm still waiting for delivery of mine p85, I truely enjoy reading these comments. Please keep them comming :)

Runar | 13 July 2013

Excellent thread, keep 'em coming. :-D

tobi_ger | 13 July 2013

An owner (MS60) driving a P85 loaner doing 0-110:
Whoever you are: thanks for your videos! :)

TMS P85 | 13 July 2013

I just test drove the P85 today in San Diego at the UTC store.

I'm actually not a "car guy". Most of my friends are and they LOVE cars. While I enjoy nice vehicles, I've never been one of those guys that really were obsessed with cars. However, I LOVE technology and am a nut for all of this technology.

Well, I was going to buy a Model S P85 earlier this year but I bought an investment property instead so I figured it was best to hold off. But every time I go to UTC Mall I always stop in and check out the cars.

I've been lurking online for months now thinking about ordering and mentioned to my wife I probably would order one but I was holding out for the Park Assist option to come. I figure if it's in Europe it can't be long to come to the USA.

Well a few weeks ago Tesla called me and invited me to test drive the car. I can't remember giving out my phone number but I must have somewhere. They said they were having a test drive event. They said that I could bring up to 3 other people with me. I just brought my wife who isn't a car person either.

They said in the email that I'd be limited to 10 minutes. But we got there and to my surprise, they asked my wife if she wanted to test drive one as well. So they gave each one of us a test drive. Wow, are these Tesla people smart! I think my wife loved it more than I did! Ha, ha.

The car is amazing and the power is quite amazing. You can read about it but until you drive it yourself it's hard to believe the acceleration. It's funny because Tesla doesn't allow you to go on the highway but they pick a street where you can gun it and the Tesla employee in the car actually encourages you to gun it. It's amazing how quickly you go from nothing to 70!

I was going to hold out for the Parking Assist but I think I'm going to order it today. I'd caution those of you on the fence of buying or waiting not to test drive one or you probably will have no patience to wait.

Amazing car.

lolachampcar | 13 July 2013

Ah, the sweet taste of coolaid. BTW, if park assist is going to Europe now it should be available to us shortly (I would think).

ppape | 13 July 2013

@markat. Thanks for sharing your story! Perhaps the thread below may help with "convincing the wife" The fever is highly contagious!

@early retirement Peter at the UTC store is great! As you requested, I passed your email over to David G with the SD club. He'll email you when we have any SD meetings!

Welcome to the grinning club!

Jackie :-)

Sleeper | 13 July 2013

2000 miles on my p85 and it still puts a smile on my face. Btw the money saved in gas will pay for future upgrades....:)

TMS P85 | 13 July 2013

Thanks Jackie for passing my email on to David. He has already emailed me. Thanks so much.

Thanks for passing on the link about that wive's thread. So true! The car was going to be for me but something tells me I'll be fighting my wife for use of the car! Ha, ha.

Brian H | 13 July 2013

Yes, contrary to some comments (Elon must have been between girlfriends when he did or approved the design) I think the MS nails all the female priorities. Silence, safety, control, fill-up free, storage etc.

Electricfun | 13 July 2013

Let's be honest the new 2013 M5 is a full step better all around car than the Model S.
In any version the model S currently has on the road.

Dramsey | 13 July 2013

@Early Retirement:

It's funny because Tesla doesn't allow you to go on the highway...

Really? The San Jose store allowed me to go on the highway. In fact that let me drive it to my condo to make sure it would fit in the tiny garage I have there...but even the standard test loop included a lot of highway.


TMS P85 | 13 July 2013

@ Dramsey,

Nope. At the UTC Mall in San Diego they said they no longer are allowing test drives on the highway. It surprised me as I-5 and I-805 are right there near the Mall but they said that traffic was too bad sometimes.

They had a scheduled path that went around on Nobel Drive and loop around Judicial Drive near the Illumina building.

But the good thing is that they do encourage you to punch it. I felt like I barely put my foot down and the speedometer had me going 78 when I slowed down. LOL.

The line was so long at the UTC store. They had pre-planned reservations and a long line. I imagine there are a lot of people that aren't serious about buying that just want to test drive it.

nsxpowered | 14 July 2013

All of the Model S has park assist hardware installed on the cars already. The sensors wired up underneath the bumper cover. The only thing it will need is possible a new bumper and a software firmware update to make it function. No one at Tesla is going to confirm it, but it's there. So more good news for all of you folks! This post may get deleted if the admin is monitoring because they don't want you to know yet.

shamrockceo | 14 July 2013

@nsxpowered Can you prove this? Source? Pictures? Would be cool if they were already pre-wired with parking sensor hardware, but I've seen others on here getting aftermarket sensors installed (with pictures). Not a single person has stated they've come across any parking sensor hardware while installing 3rd party.

I'm going to go with "false", unless you can prove otherwise.

Dramsey | 14 July 2013

@Early: well, that's annoying. One of the high points of my own test drive was whizzing along the highway, seemingly propelled, as I wrote originally, by "pious thoughts and unicorn farts".

I thought my 2013 A6 was a quiet highway car. It is, until you drive a Mod S.

In other news, my local Audi dealer is concerned with me, since I've been making noises to them about getting an R8. When informed of my Mod S test drive and how impressed I was, my salesman wrote back:

I know and if we get [an R8] that is available to drive, you will be the first person called. At this point, I do believe you are an Audi loyalist, at least I hope so.

But hey: picnic!

Which reminds me, there will be a picnic for Audi owners and friends on Saturday, August 17th at Mayberry Park. I plan on attending, they say there may be at least 50 people in attendance with thier Audi's. As the date gets closer, I will let you know of the time or any changes.

Well, it's nice to see them try and keep my business. You'd think the least they could do would be to order a $120K car so I could drive it...

AmpedRealtor | 14 July 2013

@ Electricfun and @ nsxpowered, um no...

earlyretirement | 14 July 2013


Yeah, it would have been nice to have taken it on the freeway and really let it loose. But I think that it was just too much worry for them. Even without going on the highway you can feel the power but it's not really too comfortable going over 75 on a smaller street where the speed limit is like 45. I'd rather go 100 on a 75 mile highway.

But one of the things I noticed is at stores like UTC in San Diego, most of the employees seem young and don't have much experience with cars at all. I guess since no one at Tesla makes sales commissions, they don't hire too many people with much knowledge about cars. Most of the employees seem like college students or recent grads. Friendly enough but several don't know too much about the car.

Funny that you mention Audi. One of my friends works there. I told him that I'm ordering one and these things are a "game changer" and he told me that Audi does realize that. He said they are working on an electric initiative called e-tron. He said that Audi fired a few weeks ago the head of R&D because he wasn't taking electric power trains seriously enough. He also cancelled a couple of products that were in the pipeline for a future release like an all electric R8.

He said, "once Tesla works out all the kinks and makes an all electric car viable and AFFORDABLE, every manufacturer is going to have to respond".

This car truly is a game changer.

Brian H | 15 July 2013

eTron is history, AFAIK. Or maybe that's just the R8

Damian | 15 July 2013

Sleeper or anyone on this thread that has passed the 800 mile mark (which weirdly enough seems to be consistent among the community here), has anyone come across the "whining" sound spoken of in the 2 whining threads here? I am trying to determine how universal it is, especially after hearing the service people explaining that it is "normal".

markapeterman | 15 July 2013

>5000 miles and no whine - I think it's pretty rare overall.

JPPTM | 15 July 2013

2,500 miles on a non-perf S and I hear 'singing' from the back--probably the inverter, and likley normal. I have a service appointment in Fremont tomorrow and will have them check.

Electricfun | 15 July 2013

Umm yes
Significantly better

tobi_ger | 15 July 2013

Care to elaborate on specifics there, please? Driving/handling/features?

Mathew98 | 15 July 2013

More likely Electric-troll...

Electricfun | 15 July 2013


I'm realist.

axehomeyg | 15 July 2013

That e-tron end-of-life article ends with "Although the Audi R8 e-tron will not make it to dealerships, it would have competed with some equally spectacular EVs. The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG E-Cell and BMW i8 would have been the R8’s only real competition. " Lately, I've experienced more ill-informed journalism around EV technologies than any other field!

Dramsey | 15 July 2013

Lately, I've experienced more ill-informed journalism around EV technologies than any other field!

Almost any time I read a news article concerning something I actually know about-- computers, guns, cars, etc.-- there's an obvious error or oversimplification.

Brian H | 15 July 2013

Singing is rare but normal, or is it normally rare?