So today I went on my second test drive at the Santana Row store. I have now talked with two different reps in the store and they told me things I have not seen in these forums and I wanted to get feedback from anyone who cares to chime in and comment:
1. The GPS - I asked him what will happen when they start charging for data plans and I chose not to subscribe and pay for it. He said that I will NOT see any maps on the main screen but will only get turn-by-turn directions in the instrument panel. "What??", I said. "You mean I am going to pay over $3k to have a GPS and I have to sign up for a data plan to really get full use of the maps?". He said, "Yup". Can anyone comment on this? Can anyone also comment on what OTHER functionality I would lose if I didn't have a data plan (eg Software update, etc)? It seems like Tesla should be more direct about it because streaming data seems to be very integral to the whole "driver experience" and paid 4G is right around the corner.
2. The air suspension - I have read all over this forum about the good, bad and ugly about air suspension. If I read it right, the system in the Tesla is basically the same one in a Mercedes and Audi. Those systems have tended to be on the unreliable side after about 50k miles. And they are very expensive to fix. The Tesla test drive guy told me something different. He said their system is made especially for Tesla by Continental and that it will outlast the conventional suspension and it is most definitely not the same system as what is found in a Mercedes or Audi. He claims it is uniquely "Tesla". Like many out there, I am debating whether to go with air or not and a big part of my decision is reliability. Can anyone comment on what the Tesla guy told me today?
3. Air suspension...continued: One of my objectives today was to take out one car with air suspension and one with springs and feel for any differences. I know a ton has been discussed about it here. But what I noticed was that there was no discernible difference in the ride in the driver's seat; however, there was a HUGE difference in the back seat where the air suspension provided a significantly better ride. Can anyone comment on why that might be or was I imagining it??
4. Mostly a side question?? - I have been on two test drives now and each time the guy taking us gave us indirect pressure to build our Model S and place a down payment "today, today, today!". I know they don't work on commission, but they literally followed me around the store after the drive and seemed pretty motivated to get me to sign on the dotted line TODAY! It was nothing like a regular car dealership, but it was also definitely not a no-pressure experience either. Has anyone else experienced that or know why that is? Are we absolutely sure they don't get some kind of “credit” for getting Model S deposits in the stores?