Anyone with a 60 sorry they didn't get an 80?

Anyone with a 60 sorry they didn't get an 80?

I'm thinking about getting a model S. I will most likely use it only 150 miles in any given week. However, that is most likely all in one day. I live in center city Philadelphia. So, I only need a car to leave town. A couple of time a year I will go to New York City, Washington, DC or the Jersey shore. Would the 60 be the best for me? If I get a 60 can't it be up graded to an 85? I would appreciate any helpful feed back.

Thomas N. | May 25, 2014 and search on 60 vs 80

This might be one of the most-discussed topics in the past few months.

Anthony J. Parisio | May 25, 2014

That's like doesn't help much.

Tâm | May 25, 2014

Ask amitb00!

He doesn't drive much. He doesn't need 85 kWh, but he shared your same concern before he ordered his.

He first asked "60 kWh vs 85 kWh."

Most said 85 kWh, some say larger, don't just settle for 85! (but not available yet.)

Then he asked 85 kWh owners for regrets.

The only regret was Tesla didn't offer bigger one!

Then he asked 60 kWh owners for regrets!

Many 60 kWh says you could do fine if you know how to manage it.

However, there are also many who said they should have gotten 60 kWh.

If you have no choice, then you just have to get by with what you could get.

But if you can afford it, RANGE is the most important thing.

Plan for winter! All those extra range is additional assurance in snow and ice even you don't think you need it now, in summer!

Once you experience Tesla, going back to your gasoline is a torture even just for once or twice a year.

Mark K | May 25, 2014

If you're not price-sensitive, it's nice to have more range to deal with unforeseen need, or long road trips.

If you want max value, the least battery that gets the job done is clearly the better deal.

All the benefits like: unparalleled crash safety, awesome acceleration, gas-free fill at home convenience, major fun-to-drive factor ... All of those benefits come with the entry level car.

Another interesting dimension: while battery supply is constrained, Tesla can build abut three 60's for every two 85's.

So theoretically, Tesla could put 33% more people into EVs if most chose 60's.

But the 85 is simply very cool.

Anthony J. Parisio | May 25, 2014

Thank you carlk, Tam, Mark k and Thomas N. Tam you summed it up very neatly. I forgot about winter. I do very little driving in winter but it is a concern.

My thinking is get a 60 now and up grade to an 85 when batters are cheaper. I'm thinking they will be after Tesla starts making it's own batteries. What do you guys think?

amatiych | May 25, 2014

I struggled with this question for a while. I did not think I need 85 since 95% of my commute is within 70 miles from home. So 140 miles round trip. Then I mapped out a few summer round trips that we usually take and figured out that I would be pushing S60 to the limit on some of them. Eg. First SC at least 166 miles from home in 90 degree weather going 70 with AC on would not leave me much room. My wife would never forgive me being stuck on the road because of dead battery or spending an two or more hours extra to charge at non SC station so for pease of mind I went with S85.

Anthony J. Parisio | May 25, 2014

Thanks amatiych.

Tâm | May 25, 2014


Waiting is a good strategy but that depends on your tolerance.

I might be croaked by then!

Remember Model X was going to be on sale on 2014?

Then, it's 2015.

Then, production will be in 2016, and so on....

The battery will be cheaper when the Gigafatory will start to produce in mass in 2017 when Gen 3 will be on sale!

Ok! That sounds easy. So can you guarantee the crystal ball?

If you can't afford it, then wait. But if you can rearrange your budget then there's no point in gambling with your future!

george210 | May 25, 2014

Get the 85 and you'jj get unlimited supercharger access and total peace-of mind. Get the 19 inch rims for lowest tire wear and just put an electric dryer 240 volt outlet in your garage. Plug your Tesla in when you come home in the evening. Set. It to charge starting after 11pm and you'll get to pay significantly less for the necessary electricity to cover 100 miles of distance than you'd have to pay for 1 gallon of gasoline.

Anthony J. Parisio | May 25, 2014

Very good sense. Thank you.

Anthony J. Parisio | May 25, 2014

Thank you for your advice.

tes-s | May 25, 2014

You may be asking the wrong question - perhaps ask "anyone with an 85 sorry they didn't get a 60?"

150 miles will be no problem with an 85 in any conditions, and leave plenty of buffer for unexpected side trips without range anxiety. Over the life of the vehicle, your needs may change - 85 at about 10% more is insurance on your purchase.

mallynb | May 25, 2014

Not sorry at all. In the year before ordering our Model S we made only two trips that were longer than the rated range of our 60. It reached 7,000 miles last week. We haven't bought gasoline for our ICE in over a year. (We kept it for those 900-1,200 mile trips we may take to visit family.)

kenj | May 25, 2014

@Anthony J

You have several folks that have responded that have 60s.

I have a 60 and I have put on 10k since December. Live in the Northeast - my daily commute is 35 miles.

Haven't had any issues. As you learn the car and how it responds - you'll be fine.

Drove to DC in a snow storm (eventually), SC in Delaware and was ready to head to DC with 135 rated in 20 minutes. Waited to range out @ 208. Drove to DC -- SC in Maryland. 2 days in hotel with no charging -- SC on the way back. Had a zero moment coming back from a Superbowl party in NJ at 7a where the host had a 110. No one knew but me since everyone was sleeping. By the way, now there is a SC at 7a on the turnpike.

Today my rated range was 235kwh - cruising at 60 (hey, the speed limit 55). 60 weighs less so less energy.

For me - very happy with the 60 with supercharging.

Brian H | May 25, 2014

No one is sorry they didn't get an 80, because there's no such thing. >;p

"Many 60 kWh [owners] says [say] you could do fine if you know how to manage it.

However, there are also many who said they should have gotten 60 kWh."

Um, they did. >;p

Anthony J. Parisio | May 25, 2014

Thank you all this is been very helpful.

wbrown01 | May 26, 2014

I own a 60 in the Philly area and I do very well. I do 80 miles roundtrip each dat to work. I have 90 miles left when I return home, more charge than a Leaf even starts with. However I went to Ocean City MD last week and was expecting to stay overnight which would have given me the charge I needed to get back (we were plugged into a 110 outlet) to the Delaware SuperCharger. So we did not stay and we needed 95 miles and we had only 55 miles of charge. My backup plane was a place where there was a ChargePoint station. I get to that and they could not turn it on remotely, it said on the charger no access without an access card. Thank god I called Tesla (those guys are the best), they found a free charge at the University of Delaware, but we had to stay there for like 3 hours to get 60 more miles to our now 40. It was a long long night, sleeping in the car in dark campus back of a research building.
Remember only 4% of folks got the 40Kw Teslas and everyone who could afford the 85s got an 85. I just did not have the extra 10K. If you can afford the 85, get it. Or don't take a day trip to Ocean city MD with your 60 and no, there are none planned for that area and I love day trips to Ocean city. I wish TM would build a SuperCharger Ocean City.

Anthony J. Parisio | May 26, 2014

Thank you. I have two questions if you don't mind. How did your MS 60 do in the snow (with or with out snow tires)? Second, the SC at 7a is that the new Hamilton location?

tes-s | May 26, 2014

Yes, that is the Hamilton location. So you are considering a 60 with supercharging? I think that is a $2000 option on the 60, and included with the 85. So the difference in price between a 60 w/SC and and 85 is $8000.

Anthony J. Parisio | May 26, 2014

Thank you. I'm trying to keep the monthly payments down. I really want the model s with adaptive cruise control. I know this will come in time. This means most likely I will have to buy another model s later. I don't want to put all the money out now for something I'm not going to keep. If I do decide to keep it I'm hoping I can upgrade the battery to an 85 at a later date. Maybe even when the new batteries come out they might be even cheaper than they are now.

amitb00 | May 26, 2014

I was so confused on this option. Finalized on 60 but then called and changed to 85. I am so glad to make that change. If you can afford it, it is a no brained. Car becomes much more usable. If you can't afford 85, it is unlikely that u can afford a 60 which costs 8 k less if u include SC option.
There is better warranty and tires on 85., Batteries will degrade over time, you wil like to make longer trips, and what not. Range and faster charging are needed in EV so go far the most you can.
I had asked if any 85 owner regretted buying 60 and there were none. There are numerous 60 owners who regret not getting 85. 85 is the most missed feature.

amatiych | May 26, 2014

Do people actually use adaptive cruise control? I had it in my FX35 and used it once to try. I had too much fun driving the car to give up the control to the computer. I feel same way about model S. It seems like such a fun car ( still waiting for mine) that I would not really want any cruise control

MezzaLuna | May 26, 2014

I'm not sorry I have a 60 -- it's met my needs, although it was only later that I discovered I wanted to get the Supercharger option so I ended up spending $500 more than if I had gotten it to begin with. I also added the Michelin Primacy tires for $1000, included with the S85. So the difference for me would have been $7000, and the benefit would be what, another 60 miles of range? Not really worth it, at least for how I use the car.

kenj | May 26, 2014

@Anthony J

@ Tes-s spot on with the Hamilton SC, right off 7a on the NJ turnpike.

I do not have dual charging, just SC.

I did get Winter tires after a couple of storms from Tesla (tires only), I noticed a difference. I felt the car slipping with the all-weather tires. I have the Goodyear All Weather. If I had extra time, I would have ordered from Tirerack to save money with the same Pirelli winter tires.

You could also see if there are any marketing cars available, that will save you extra dough too, same warranty on the battery.

MitchP85D | May 26, 2014

I have an MS60. No regrets. I originally wanted the base 85, but my wife wanted the tech package, pano-roof, leather seats, super-charger. So, I settled on the 60 with the stuff my wife wanted. That way I could keep my budget around 80K. I just can't see paying 100K for a car! It was more of a principle issue with me. Being in Houston, we drive it about 2000 miles a month. It is a great around town car!!! We have our ICE for road trips. I say go for the 60 if most of your driving is around town. If you plan on a lot of out of town driving, the extra range of the 85 will relieve some range anxiety.

tes-s | May 26, 2014

@rmitchell - 60 sounds good, but if you wanted to upgrade to an 85 at purchast time I think it would have cost you at most $8000 - not $20,000.

Plugged In | May 26, 2014

I'll throw in my two cents: In my own opinion, if you can afford the 85, consider it seriously because you never know when you'll need the extra 60 miles of range it gives you. The advantage of the 60 is that you may find it more affordable. The advantage of the 85 is that, given today's Supercharger setup, you can worry less about the range.

Or, if you prefer, which set of anxiety are you looking to alleviate most? The range, or the $$$?

Jonathan D | May 26, 2014

I think one aspect to consider is whether this is your only vehicle. If so, I think the 85 is a good idea just to be on the safe side. But if you have multiple cars you can always hop in the gas guzzler if you don't want to have to stop to charge, which makes the 60 more reasonable. I went with a 60 because due to my lifestyle I couldn't justify spending the extra on what is already a pricey car. I even skipped the SC for the time being; that it only requires a software update down the road to enable made that a no-brainer for me to skip now. Also, this is new tech obviously, I liked the idea of starting with a no frills model (no upgrades except tech package), and with the buy-back program I could always turn it in and get a more expensive model if I wanted it in 36 months. This will be the first car I've bought new, and it's a lot of money for *any car*, regardless of affordability aspects. If it weren't for Tesla I would be buying a car that was $20k less expensive, that's just reality. The 85 might "only" be another $8k but you have to draw the line somewhere. As it is I would never have guessed I'd be spending $75k on a car.

MitchP85D | May 26, 2014

@tes-s - You are right about that. But if you get the P85 with all the extras, I think you are looking north of a 100K.

petero | May 26, 2014

Anthony. I have an early 60kWh, if I were to order today I would order the 85kWh. I may not need the larger battery but I want it. It is not about the slight performance increase, it is about having greater range.

petero | May 26, 2014

P.S. If I could upgrade today from a 60kWh to an 85 for $10K I would do it in a heartbeat. The retrofit is currently at about $18K (per David Nolan).

60InSeattle | May 26, 2014

OP - I have not received my 60 yet (Early June!) but I went back and forth about the 60/85 as well. I ended on a 60 because I thought back and looked forward to how I would be driving it and in the very few situations I could think of, the extra 27% of range wasn't worth $10k! Like you, I didn't want to go all in on a car, this was by far already the most expensive thing car I ever imagined I would purchase. This is not a stretch of my budget, its a stretch on the mindset of "not wasting too much money" on a depreciating asset, no matter how cool it is :)

To me, the only comfort option I wanted was the Pano roof. From there, spending $3500 on SC and dual chargers seems like a better deal to ensure faster charging than an extra 50 miles (which is only 25 more miles to the point of no return on a round-trip). Anything over 175 miles, I am going to have to charge anyways, so I wanted to be sure that I could do that as quick as possible. The number of 175 to 225 mile roundtrips I would take over the next 5-8 years can probably be counted in a single hand.

Throw in a CHaDeMo adapter when it comes out, and the $4,500 I spent on SC, Dual Chargers and CHaDeMo is much more of a "road warrior" than an 85 that cost $10k more with an additional 50 miles of range and only SC access. I'd still be spending the $2500 on the dual chargers and CHaDeMo adapter, so you're right back at the $8k difference. Note, I am in the Pacific Northwest, where CHaDeMo and HaL2 chargers are abundant, so I plan on using them when I am out.

Though, from everything I read on this forum and TMC, what matters is what YOU need and what YOU want, no one is in your exact situation. I'm about as controversial as you can get with my MS (60, dual chargers, SC and no tech-package). The tech package again was just something I couldn't see myself wasting my hard-earned money on for things that are not very "tech" to begin with.

tes-s | May 27, 2014

@Mitchel - Yes, a loaded P95+ costs a lot more than your configured 60. But the difference between your configured 60 upgraded to an 85 is $8000.

tes-s | May 27, 2014

@60inSeattle - $8000 upgrade, not $10,000.

I also looked at it as more than a 27% increase in range. If you want 30 miles of "buffer" then the % is higher. The 85 also charges faster at a supercharger (more miles/hr).

Anthony J. Parisio | May 27, 2014


Thank you and thank you all who have responded. wbrown01, yours helped me the most. From what you said, I get that around town and up and down 95 a 60 will be fine. However, in Philly we do like to go to the shore, to Lancaster county, etc. These are places that would require a charging point at the destination for a 60. However, there are no SC in these place and charging might be difficult. 85's would be able to do them without a charge point. This would make these places a day trip as they are for an ice car. Since it would be my only car for a long time this is a consideration.

I really appreciate everyone's help. I really should be getting a $30,000 car at my income level. Going for a $100,000 car is not something I car do easily. However, Tesla is not just about my needs or pleasure. Many of you know this must succeed. We live in a closed garage with many ICE cars running. How look till we die? Well not by my hand! I want to help clean this mess up as many of you do. For me this is the reason to be an early adopter. Tesla is a way to "put our money where our mouth is". That is why I want to do this.

tes-s | May 27, 2014

Won't be able to get it for $30,000 but should not have to spend $100,000. I think you can get an 85 for about $80,000 including tax, tags, and federal rebate.

karmamule | May 27, 2014

Anthony, thanks for starting this thread, as I was also debating between 60 and 85kwh. I just confirmed my order this Sunday and went with an 85, but was wondering if that was necessary.

One person mentioned something that for me, living in New England, is key, and that is how range is reduced in colder weather. In thinking the 60 might very well be sufficient for me, I hadn't taken that into account, so that helped me feel confident that I'd made the right choice for myself.

Good luck with your soon-to-come purchase! I look forward to sharing notes on our orders' progress. :)

petero | May 27, 2014

Anthony. FYI. Today there is an article by David Nolan, who writes articles about his MS. Originally he ordered an S60 and spent $18K to upgrade his 60 to an 85. In his article he quotes a book by Nick Howe, a fellow MS owner.

“Howe flatly states that the real-world range of the 85-kWh Model S is 200 to 220 miles--far less than Tesla's claim of up to 300 miles or the EPA's official figure of 265 miles. Really cold weather, he says, can cut that number by up to 30 percent more.

(David Nolan) And as an 85-kWh Model S owner for more than a year, I can confirm that How's numbers are spot-on.”

Red Sage ca us | May 27, 2014

Yes... But what is their definition of 'Real World' driving?
Drive It Like You Stole It
-- [DELTA] the torpedoes! We're on the [MIKE FOXTROT]<?b> Highway to [HOTEL]!
Drive It Like A Hippie Tree Hugger
-- Accelerate slowly to posted speed limit, minus 15 MPH, coasting downhill as often as possible... or 54.6 MPH maximum on the highway is best!
Drive It At The Approximate Speed Limit
-- Posted speed limit, minus 5 MPH... or plus 5 MPH when passing, at all times.
I bring this up because some of my buddies used to all talk about how much they loved driving manual transmission, stick shift cars. One of the main things they would always spout as a 'benefit' was that those cars got better gas mileage than automatics. I pointed out that I'd ridden with all of them and absolutely none of them ever drove their cars for fuel economy -- even though they knew how.

Each of them spun up every gear to the rev limiter and beyond before shifting in the Street Light Gran Prix. They would literally shift through all five gears, both up and down, between two signal lights, barely 200 yards apart. Then do it again. Thus, they burned far more fuel than necessary in pursuit of having 'fun' by speed shifting.

Your range with an electric car, is just like your range with an internal combustion engine vehicle.

It depends on how you drive, more than anything else.

So let's get real.

crmohler | May 27, 2014

I agonized over the decision, also, and saved the $8,000 by going with a 60 with supercharging. I'm very happy with my decision, even though I haven't used a supercharger yet. I've driven 12,000 miles in 5 months and have only charged once when I wouldn't have needed to if I had an 85. That being said, I live in SoCal where charging options are readily available and weather is rarely a concern. I did opt for the buy back guarantee financing through Tesla (luckily it was a great rate at 1.99%), just in case I decide to upgrade later.

If I had to do it over again, I would definitely opt for the 60. That being said, if I get an X I'd probably go with the 85 as I think that car will be heavier and less efficient than my MS60. My lifetime average energy usage has been 306 kw/hr.

arrowgant | May 27, 2014

I got a 60 primarily for my in-town driving. 8 mos now, and I am very happy with it. Now that superchargers are popping up everywhere, I am going to go for the supercharging option and go for some long travel as well.

I heard that superchargers can charge upto 150 miles in about 20-30 minutes. Is that only for 85, or is it true for a 60 also? Does 60 charge to say 100 miles (half of its 208 capacity) in the same time, or goes to 150?

kenj | May 27, 2014

.... @Anthonyj don't forget about the marketing model. Same warranty less cost.

I did not get the dual charging, you can save there. As in the NW there are plenty of CHaDeMo chargers, consider that expense saved. The time at a "slow charger" will either be at work or sleeping. So speed does not make that difference.

When the SC network is built to the one per 100 miles, I am good with stopping every couple of hours.

SamO | May 27, 2014

Very unhappy with the 60.

Oops. I mean unhappy I waited until the price went up $2500 in 2013.

I reiterate what crmohler says above. Living in ideal conditions of Southern California allows this to be an easy decision. If I lived in UP of Michigan or rural Alabama then I might have chosen differently.

Drove from LA to San Diego today. 138 miles. 234Wh/m at 65mph (with a few pockets of traffic).

That means on a range charge I can drive over 240 miles. I'm confident that with careful driving and with the lighter MS60, my range is less than 10% different than a P85 with 21" tires.

Took the extra $8000 and bought a ton of TSLA . . .

kenj | May 27, 2014

+++ Samo

Anthony J. Parisio | May 27, 2014

Thank you for the article. It does seem to help.

Anthony J. Parisio | May 27, 2014

While the upgrade is $18,000, they will give you money back on your old battery. This could bring the price down to about $8000. Did you ask them about the trade-in of the old battery?

petero | May 27, 2014


Here is the article:

Cost breakdown
“Price of the new battery was $44,564. The trade-in value of my old battery was $29,681--a number arrived at by discounting its new list price of $37,102 by a 20-percent "restocking" fee.
The net cost to me of the new battery was $14,883. Adding five hours of labor ($600), minor parts ($125), the battery shipping cost ($1,520), and sales tax ($1,257) brought the grand total to $18,386.

Red Sage. “Real World Driving.” My guess is a mix of stop and go, 75+ mph on the freeways, a few hills and valleys, a couple of long winding roads, not using the range setting, blowing lots of cold or hot air, and occasionally smoking a few kid racers.

In which parallel universe or world is Tesla’s 300 miles or the EPA’s 265 mile range? Bottom line, it is not about the journey but the fun you have along the way. Plug and Play.

Red Sage ca us | May 27, 2014

My guess is that parallel world was Willow Springs Raceway. ;-)

Or, some other, suitable, closed course with professional drivers and stuff.

4. Drive It Like A Brain Dead Zombie
-- DUDE! The light has changed! Will you GO already? GEEZ! How much more GREEN do you need it to be?!?

Anthony J. Parisio | May 28, 2014


HOLY CRAP! I did not know the batteries where $44,564! You have cinched it for me. $18,386 is too much compared to the $8000.00 new.
With the new battery plant, the price might come down by 30% but that is still to much for me to up grade. I guess I have to wait and get an 85.

Everyone's input has been so helpful. Thank you all! This really made a difference. Since I will use the car for "day tripping," I was fooling myself to think I could save money with a 60 and get one now. I guess I need to be patient and save more.