Why I didn't buy anything instead of Tesla Model S

Why I didn't buy anything instead of Tesla Model S

I was looking for my next car for years. Literally. Kept delaying it for various reasons - there was always something missing, something wrong with the cars I was looking at, complete lack of chemistry. There was always to be a better time financially, as there always is.

I knew about Tesla. But I treated if like many. A poster car I can't afford. I love the name, fact that it is purely electric, design, performance. At this time I am paying hundreds of dollars every month for gasoline alone. I looked at all other electric cars that I thought I could afford and all of them were insufficient. And, turns out, even though they were less expensive, I could not really afford them as:

a) I would either need yet another car to cover longer trips that I regularly make.

b) It would have to be a hybrid with half the performance and twice as many things that can go wrong.

c) Regularly go through the hassle of renting.

Neither was appealing. Had hopes for Volt but these melted away as the car appeared. Leaf is a road-worthy short-range golf cart. Nothing has a range equal to the range of trips I make, let alone my kids' bellies (distance travelled before I have to stop for my kids to go to the washroom and/or eat). Tesla was and still is the only one. Nothing else offered better charging network than Tesla and Tesla can use them all (even though I am in Canada).

I gave up and looked at pure ICE cars. Nothing that would "spark". For a very long time.

When I learned of the Toronto Tesla store I booked a test drive knowing full well that I won't buy it. It was just for fun, to see that poster car.

Something happened during that test drive. Something sub-conscious. The car stopped being a poster toy and started feeling real, useful, good. Best car I ever sat in, let alone drove. Best car I ever heard of.

I also revisited the cost structure that I forgot to think about in a long while. Turned out that I could afford it - I just didn't know it. I didn't believe it. I checked and rechecked. Many times, in different ways and level of detail. Every calculation proved that I could afford a car I "couldn't" afford. I didn't need it to be a toy car that needed a backup to also be paid for. I could have Tesla only and still be fine. And, if I get it, I would have a car I would be proud of and happy in, unlike with any other.

Tesla, thus, fulfilled my needs, wants and "cans" awesomely. Nothing else comes even close. Period.

So I ordered one. Happily grinning for quite some time now.

NKYTA | 23. kesäkuu 2014


nobueno | 23. kesäkuu 2014


Red Sage ca us | 23. kesäkuu 2014


Mark K | 23. kesäkuu 2014

When has a car ever changed our worldview?

This is special.

PaceyWhitter | 23. kesäkuu 2014

I read the title as "I bought nothing instead of buying a Model S"

Congrats Sule.

sule | 23. kesäkuu 2014

@PaceyWhitter: Thanks! But that happened a while ago, I already got my dose of welcoming posts :). This one I wrote and titled as I did to appear in search engines when searching for the other kind of posts. Tesla may not be for everyone but many of those fail to account for many things... or are posted by trolls...

Grinnin'.VA | 23. kesäkuu 2014

My story is similar:
* I've been driving a Prius -- it gets over 40 mpg for real. But it's a bit underpowered.
* Tesla got my attention. But it's expensive. I thought, "maybe I'll get one some day".

Then on a visit with my son in Littleton, CO he made an appointment for us to do a Tesla test drive. He did the 0-60 drag race thing, and it worked. Glad I braced myself with my head against the headrest. Wow, that felt a bit like we were riding a rocket.

So I did some 'due diligence' research and found nothing to discourage me from getting my dream car this year. The more I learned, the more I liked the Tesla story. So I ordered an MS85.

The only downers I've felt are:
* I need a special charging ciruit run to my garage, and
* I have to wait until OCTOBER to get my dream Tesla.

I suppose there will be a few bumps in the road.
But the Model S is an awesome car -- the future that I wasn't sure I'd live long enough to drive.


karmamule | 23. kesäkuu 2014

After test driving and falling in love with the car I put down a deposit, but was sure I wouldn't be able to afford it. Much to my delight, after running the numbers I realized I'd be paying about the same if not a little less per month than when I was paying for two cars back when married.

So, hurray for being back to the single life and getting a Model S!

sule | 25. kesäkuu 2014

Is there anyone else with a related story?

tezzla.SoCal | 25. kesäkuu 2014

My story is kind of different: I had a 2010 S550, I thought this was the best car around (but I hate spending $300 a month for gas) & I couldn't wait for the 2014 model. The 1st time I actually "saw" a Tesla, I thought... Wow!

Starting reading, setup my test drive for July 5th, 2013. I was kind of underwhelmed (I drove a 60), I thought the S550 was quieter and road much smoother and the interior was better, but, I was still drawn to the Tesla. Ordered that day and confirmed the next day.

I was very apprehensive about my decision; until I drove my S85 home. I was so blown away by the power and the smoothness of the gearless Tesla. By the time I drove home, I knew I made the right decision.

Six months later and not one visit to the service center, I ordered a P85. Like most owners, I am a huge advocate of the technology. I have given so many test drives/rides! The mailman, the DirecTV guy, the UPS guy, my neighbors, my coworkers and complete strangers.

Now, coming up on my 1 year of ownership, ZERO REGRETS. I couldn't care less of the little things (cup holders, grab handles, center storage); I love Tesla! I also installed solar panels, went from spending $250 a month to zero. Total monthly savings $550 (when you exclude gasoline).

I now hate every car commercials (well, hate them more), nothing can compare to the Tesla! Someday, everyone will know.

rocketscientist | 25. kesäkuu 2014 your journey description...much like mine, : ) People don't know what they don't know.
Those of us that know just keep on grinning. I can't imagine driving anything else.

mrbarnes | 25. kesäkuu 2014

@sule - thank you for the inspiring story! I was wondering if you could share - which Model S were you able to afford, which config and options?

I've been having the moment that you speak of ever since I test drove the car...I *know* I'm getting one, but just trying to find out *how* I can afford it when I can't 'afford' it. I was going to wait for the lower-priced economy car, but I don't know if I can make it that long! Any thoughts are appreciated!

sule | 25. kesäkuu 2014

@mrbarnes: I am fairly financially conservative, so I got less than people would expect from me but I am happy: S85 (not P, +), leather, dark metallic, obeche wood, matching yacht floor, dual chargers, HPWC, premium 19" wheels+tires, another set with winter tires, 8 year service, 8 year warranty (4yr extension), almost all accessories (complete set of all weather mats, charging, adapters, shelves, tire repair kit, ...). All from Tesla. Also in: garage upgrade. Wanted parking sensors but not tech pack so got money. Happy with zero regrets.

sule | 25. kesäkuu 2014

Oh... and I had it OptiCoated...

sule | 25. kesäkuu 2014

... and pano roof.

BrassGuy | 25. kesäkuu 2014

I was not shopping for another car, but the end of your story is the same. I did the math many times too. Each time I did, it got more difficult as I got too hyped up to concentrate on the numbers.

Kondo | 25. kesäkuu 2014

@sule ~~ thanks for the post, I have my own story.

I knew nothing of Tesla a few months ago. My wife showed me an article of the ELR and Tesla was referenced. I came to this forum and could not stop reading all of the comments and praise. I went to the showroom and saw the car first hand and loved it. Now, $100 is way out of my league but I have always been pretty good at justifying a purchase LOL March through May were very busy for me being a high school golf coach in Arizona. Finally my wife said if you want a Tesla you have to sell your 2 cars first. I don't always listen but I did this time. I went to a couple places and finally sold my 2002 corvette convertible with 14,500 miles and my 2009 Pontiac G8 GXP. I still had not taken a test drive but with check in hand I put my order in.... my wife came into the room asking what I had done. I ordered the Tesla, "I know and when you get it you will complain that you didn't get the 85P, make the change"!! A week later I took my first test drive with both an 85 and a P. Loved them both but glad I made the decision my wife did LOL The test drive told me that the 85P is very much like my Pontiac. Amazing acceleration and handling. They only made 1185 of the Pontiacs so I felt pretty special, in September I will fell special again with my P85 and no gas mileage anxiety.

Grinnin'.VA | 26. kesäkuu 2014

@tezzla | JUNE 25, 2014 NEW
I have given so many test drives/rides!

The electrician who is installing the 220V circuit to my garage seems almost excited about Tesla as I am. I'll invite him to stop by for a 'test drive' after I get my MS85.


tezzla.SoCal | 26. kesäkuu 2014

One of my neighbors (who has a Prius) drove it around the block; never exceeding 30mph! It drove me crazy, I kept telling him to punch it! He would've probably had a heart attack if I drove.

My other neighbor (who has a modified M5); had the grin, big time.
Then was sort of mumbling about his m5 with sorrow in his voice.

NomoDinos | 26. kesäkuu 2014

Tezzla - Haha!... I think I have an idea which neighbors are which ;) The next time I saw Mr. M5, he had a huge, dopey grin just talking about the test drive. I don't think I've ever seen anyone so sad walking to their souped-up M5.

Also, I have my solar installed and they threw in installation for the HPWC, so I got mine early (still waiting for AWD :). If you ever want a free charge-up and also help me test my charger, drop me a message!

16thnch | 26. kesäkuu 2014

Yes @sule, something of a similar story. I was approaching lease-end figuring on having to settle and steeling myself for something with 1) boorish looks, 2) antiquated technology and 3) performance issues. Very frustrated and somewhat depressed after many months and in disbelief that someone couldn't do better than what was out there.

Then, hubby sends along a link to the Model X - I'm an SUV gal and was about to be a double granny so could be a perfect fit except for the fact that it was not available and, likely outside the budget. We love bleeding edge things so thought we'd just have some fun checking out the Model S anyway. One can dream, eh?

Walked in and fell madly, deeply, irreversibly IN LOVE. Looks, technology, performance - triple check! Money? Well . . .

That same, wonderful guy quietly ran spreadsheet after spreadsheet proving to me we could afford it with tax credits and gas savings.

I am a wildly happy woman and granny now - it fits all of us including baby gear, dog and Costco run - except for those moments when my head jerks back in the passenger seat which I hardly notice (its sooo smooth - air suspension) till the car rises off the ground at which point I am compelled to look in the rear-view mirror to see the (insert your favorite ICE performance vehicle) rapidly receding then, over at that sweet, wonderful guy who bought 'me' a Tesla . . .

Red Sage ca us | 27. kesäkuu 2014

"Whose car is this again?"

"Yours, mine, and ours, Dear."

mrbarnes | 27. kesäkuu 2014

@sule - thank you for the your car specs, and this thread. Great stories from folks! I *know* I will get one, just have some figuring to do! Have a great weekend.

EJH | 27. kesäkuu 2014

I think that most owners would agree with me when I say that the Model S has removed completely their desire for any other vehicle except perhaps another Tesla model.
The Model S invalidates in one way or another all other cars on the road, and the build quality is not based on "planned obsolescence" but is built to last a lifetime, which is a first for a modern automobile.

Congratulations Sule.

Mathew98 | 28. kesäkuu 2014

Sorry folks. I can never forgive myself for leaving my MS at a supermarket, BJ's, or Home Depot parking lot only to discover newly created dents by other careless drivers or shopping cart.

So I traded in my hybrid for an off lease mini van. It is a gas hog but it functions well for its intended purposes. Now 5 dings and a few body scratches later I could care less why/where/when some idiots did the damage to the freaking tank.

I would have flipped out if my red mistress had any dings because I was showing her off in public. She lives a sheltered life and never been abused by valets or guest drivers. Btw, I rarely drive her in the rain (exactly once this year) but I will hose her down every week or two!

The wife has to take a hike for an hour when I give the mistress bubble bath (foam gun wash).

mcdonalk | 28. kesäkuu 2014

We couldn't buy anything but a Model S because, given what is known, we wanted to contribute to climate change as little as possible. It helps immensely that the car is practical.