60, 85 or p85- can't decide

60, 85 or p85- can't decide

Thinking of buying a Tesla and trying to decide on a 60, 85 or p85. I live in San Diego and drive occasionally to LA (130 miles) If I get the 60 I would probably buy the option to go to the supercharging station. Most of my driving is within 35 miles of home. Test drove the p85 and it's amazingly quick. How does the 60 and 85 compare?

jcaspar1 | December 3, 2013

Easy! P85+

Actually, if you can swing it. I would definitely get the 85. Less issues with range to worry about if you are ever planning on extended travel. I am planning a trip from Sacramento to Long Beach via Santa Barbara and Santa Monica. Should be effortless in an 85. A 60 would likely require an extra stop as the Harris Ranch run to Sacramento is 195 miles.

I have a P and love it but not a necessity. Then again, I originally ordered a standard 85 and upgraded to a P a month after confirming my order. Have not regretted it!

negarholger | December 3, 2013

It depends also on how long you want to keep the car. Worst case scenario would be after 8 year the 85 becomes a 60 and the 60 a 40. I usually keep my cars for 10+ years so the 85 was the logical choice.

Tâm | December 3, 2013

@ jaygelbart

Quite a few keep ask the same question. I should have archived my answer so I can copy and paste.

Your question is very similar to the thread:

If you can only afford 40 kWh (no longer selling) then that's fine too.

My advice is if you can afford it or if you can sacrifice a portion of your budget, then get the P85 or + .

Some reasons for not getting the P85 or + :

1) Too expensive: OK! If you can't afford it, then forget it! Who's forcing you! Otherwise, get it because of the responsiveness and amazing experience!

For me, it is not for showing off in a drag race but it is very practical in change lanes with ease every day.

2) Short commute, never drive that far: Beware of the repeated common theme: once you get a Tesla, you may drive MUCH MORE than you did before!

crmohler | December 3, 2013

I am almost identical to you. Live in SD, drive under 50 miles per day with an occasional trip to LA/Palm Springs. I ordered the 60, which is scheduled to arrive Dec. 21st. I did order supercharging. I think the SJC supercharger will help when it comes in.

Basically, I looked at my driving patterns over the past 3 years and there was only one trip where a 60 would have meant an additional supercharger stop compared with an 85. I decided that at that rate the $8,000 price differential wasn't worth it. I could hire a limo to take me back and forth to LA 10 times for that price.

I have never paid so much for a car, so the extra $8,000 difference was a big deal for me. Hopefully I won't regret it.

Good luck with your decision!

crmohler | December 3, 2013

I should also say that I have never owned a car for more than 3 years, and I suspect I'll upgrade to the X after a few years, so the battery degradation issue wasn't a concern for me. I did go with Tesla Financing (1.99% for 60 months) with the guaranteed buy back since I was concerned that the 60 may lose value as the battery sizes increase. | December 3, 2013

Go with your finances & heart. Any way you choose you will win.

Big T | December 3, 2013

If cost is not the most important issue, you'll never regret going with an S85 or P85. If you are planning on keeping your Model S for many years, you'll be ready if your driving needs change. No one ever said they wish they had less range, power, speed, battery warranty or resale value.

Bottom line, the $8,000 difference between an S60 with supercharging and an S85 is about $140 a month over 60 months at the 1.49% rate offered by Alliant Credit Union.

Chunky Jr. | December 3, 2013

If you can afford it, get the P85. You won't regret it. And I think P85 will have better resale value down the road.

tessellate | December 3, 2013

For me, the choice was between an S60 and P85. My commutes are relatively short; so the additional range of the S85 didn't seem nearly as compelling as the performance increase of a P85.

Unfortunately, I couldn't justify the ~$20K premium of a P85; so I 'settled' for a beautiful red S60...and have no regrets.

Bottom line: choose the model that best meets your driving needs, and fits within budget. As others have said, there's no 'wrong' choice when it comes to the Model S. :-)

david.baird | December 4, 2013

So I'm considering a well specified S85 or I could drop some options and take a P instead.

It's my understanding though that the real difference between the S85 and the P85 is in the 0-30mph times, the rest is so small that you wouldn't know it unless you're on a trck with professional timing equipment.

So unless you're drag racing off the lights all the time I think the S85 is really OK.

Now, tell me why I'm wrong... :o)

logicalthinker | December 4, 2013

I would not get a P85 unless I had cash to burn. You are going to go through tires much faster, if my general sense of owners' experiences is correct, than you would with a "plain" 85. I probably would also not get 21" wheels for the same reason.

But I'm just a regular commuter, 99+ % of the time I drive (literally). If, on the other hand, you spend hours eet at the racetrack...

logicalthinker | December 4, 2013

Apparently Swype thinks eet is a good substitute for weekly

Brian H | December 4, 2013

Yore rite. ;p

logicalthinker | December 4, 2013


bryceha | December 4, 2013

Buy the 60, and $25K of TSLA..

rodhoffman | December 8, 2013

19" wheels on the S85 is quiet and similar to a Benz in noise. P configurations + or not is a noisy option. You really do not need the extra power unless you are at a drag strip. I raced this fall against a P and P+ with my S85 and they smoked me in the 1/4 mile by several car lengths but interestingly enough the top speed was the same... so the $20k you spend will be good for 300 yards....

Also, check tire costs - P+ is ridiculous verses 19".

I live at 8,500 elevation in Colorado so snow was also a consideration.

Brian H | December 8, 2013

Car performance at that altitude would be very interesting to document.

BTW, do all residents automatically qualify (in one respect) for the Mile High Club?

Big T | December 8, 2013

"I would not get a P85 unless I had cash to burn. You are going to go through tires much faster, if my general sense of owners' experiences is correct, than you would with a 'plain' 85."

S85 and P85(not +) come stock with the same wheels, tires and suspension so tire wear would be the same.

"P configurations + or not is a noisy option."

S85 and P85(not +) come stock with the same wheels, tires and suspension so those components would not be noisier. Is it your impression that the performance inverter is noisier?

"the top speed was the same" [between S85, P85 & P85+]

Perhaps as perceived by you or the way the cars were driven. Tesla says the top speed of S85 is 125 MPH and P85 is 130 MPH. I was told by someone with Tesla that those are artificially limited.

kevjo | December 8, 2013

WE bought the 60 and love it. Are you really going to notice the difference between 0-60 in 4.8 vs 5.6? (or whatever the actual numbers are) I love the acceleration of the 60 but have never actually "floored it". (I know quite a few owners out there are thinking wtf is wrong with you? Right about now)

We live in Oakland and have a weekend place up in the Napa Valley 130 miles rt. We also drive to Sacramento occasionally, range has never been an issue for us.

If you have the money, sure, why not get the 85 but if you have better things to do with $10k get the 60.

Either way, you'll be in love.

Captain_Zap | December 8, 2013

The P85 and P85+ have the same motors, inverters and the like. The difference is in the suspension and wheels. I have a P85 with both the 21" tires and the 19" tires. The 21" tires are fun but along with it comes a ride that feels more bumps and that is a bit noisier, but you stick to the road really well. Also, you will consume more energy and rubber with the 21" tires. The 19" tires are more power efficient, less vulnerable to potholes, have a nicer ride and are less expensive due to their longer lifespan and price.

Both Performance cars have the same get up and go. I noticed the difference in the steering of the P85+ and I liked it. But it wasn't enough for me to sell my car and spend more for the "+". It is a nice cornering car. The P85 with 19" wheels is most versatile and you won't be sacrificing any torque, power, g-force or giggles. I could have been happy with the S85 but I may have been having lingering "what ifs" in the back of my mind. The grins are a bit bigger with the P85. I really enjoy power and responsiveness.

I would choose a stripped down 85kWh before I would take a 60kWh that is loaded with toys for a multitude of reasons. As a matter of fact, I may have completely passed on the Model S and waited for further advancement if it were not for the 85kWh range capabilities and the possible extended lifespan of the battery. for my purposes.

I guess you would need to ask yourself whether you will be happy with your range capabilities 5 years down the road if there was a loss of range. The loss of range I have seen so far is almost noise, but I didn't know that would be the case when I ordered a year and a half ago. The different battery packs may not have the same lifespans either. That is yet to be seen.

I hope that helps. Let us know what you decide.

tes-s | December 9, 2013

I went for the 85 purely for range, particularly in the cold and after 5 years if the battery degraded. Also got the dual chargers, which come in handy using HPWC at Tesla locations as we await more superchargers.

Sounds like the 60 will be just fine for you. An 85 might be useful if your driving habits change - but you could always trade up from your 60 if that happens.

Mike T | December 9, 2013

I think we are in the same boat but I'm not quite ready to drop $100k. I might even wait for the Gen III. Overall, I came to the conclusion that S85 is the way to go for my occasional road trips. I prefer the 19" wheels for the ride and have a ZX 10R if I really feel like hitting the twisties so no P85 necessary for my case.

I recommend doing travel routes to where you would normally travel to including road trips and compare with available chargers along the way. Keep in mind range will drop over time as well as noted above (I calculated 20% loss for my planning).

jinglehyme | December 9, 2013

Stick with a fully loaded 85. I've had P85 and P85+ loaners. But my loaded 85 with 15K miles feels better on longer trips. It's so well rounded and feels "just right" Goldilocks.

I had a crush on the P85+ for just a moment, but was happy to see mine back in in the driveway. The 21s have a strange personality. Sumptin just aint right!

Brian H | December 9, 2013

Trying too hard?

STY1 | December 9, 2013

To me the P isn't worth the extra money . Jingle +1

theapple | December 9, 2013

You'd be happy with the 60 but I highly recommend the larger battery if you can afford it. My 60 doesn't have the same off-the-line snap as the 'P' loaner I drove but still feels like jet takeoff and sends passengers giggling.