InsideLine track test of Model S

InsideLine track test of Model S

Maybe some of you have noticed, but just in case somebody is not following tesla on facebook but only on this forum, here is a link to the track test they did of the model S

Overall quite good results, as you can see, acceleration was even a bit faster than 4.4, but strangely enough, they claim it got worse after every run

The first and second runs were the quickest, and after that it just got slower and slower despite having plenty of charge. By the sixth and final run it was 0.3 second slower.

Any ideas on why this can be? Motor overheating, or controller not getting enough cooling and accumulating heat between runs?

They also have another track test, which I think is relevant for comparison's sake

Model S performance matches those quite nicely in specs. Jaguar has more HP but less torque, BMW 550i has less HP but more torque. Even though Model S is about 300 lbs heavier, it still matches or beats them. One aspect where it kinda falls short is the price, it's $20k more than those two cars. I guess a closer comparison price-wise will be the non-performance model S, with standard wheels (21" are a $3500 option), but its performance will be noticeably lower.

Anyone else happy with what tesla is showing? Anyone expected more?

MB3 | 15 août 2012

For my driving habits, I will easily make up the 20k price difference with savings at the pump, putting Tesla on better than even footing than those premium sedans.
I'm curious to hear more about the performance degradation.

Todd Burch | 15 août 2012

The performance degredation is not a surprise. Repeated high power runs generate heat in the motor, batteries, and power electronics. This heat reduces the efficiency and power output of the drivetrain slightly. Now, had they let the drivetrain cool for a few minutes, or had they driven it for a few minutes at speed without high acceleration demands, the next run would've been similar to the first.

TikiMan | 15 août 2012

I agree Todd, and this is fairly common on most ICE cars as well. Heat is always the worst enemy for any vehicle, and as most professional drag racers will tell you, the best track times are always going to be on the coldest days. In fact, many of my racing buddies use to spray their inner-coolers for their turbo race cars with NOS, just to cool them down before a timed run.

Furthermore, they didn't mention the tempatures at the California Raceway in Fontant the day they tested. That area typically reaches temps in the high 90's low 100's this time of year. So, the very fact that the Tesla did faster than spec runs in the lower 4's says it outperforms an ICE vehicle in high temps!

I for one and very pleased with these results! :-)

BYT | 15 août 2012

20k savings at the pump at today's prices. Higher gas prices means a quicker ROI

Volker.Berlin | 16 août 2012

I'm particularly impressed with the stopping power:

Model S:
30-0 (ft): 27
60-0 (ft): 108

"Braking: Very firm pedal. Feels like a normal car without all the hybrid wonkiness. Just a little bit of extra travel at the very end of the stroke, but no fade and rock-solid stability. First stop was 110 feet. Second stop was shortest at 108 feet and third stop was longest at 112 feet. Very consistent."

2012 Jaguar XF Supercharged:
30-0 (ft): 29
60-0 (ft): 113

2011 BMW 550i:
30-0 (ft): 28
60-0 (ft): 114

NotTarts | 16 août 2012

20k savings at the pump at today's prices. Higher gas prices means a quicker ROI

Definitely. When you combine that with the federal tax credit you'd have saved around $17-28k after 5 years of ownership.

Brian H | 16 août 2012

Figure in the missing oil changes and brakepad replacements, etc., and you start to get into, "Can you afford to drive a non-Tesla?" territory.

Butch | 16 août 2012

This is better than the Roadster. The Roadster has an air cooled Power Electronics Module (PEM). For hard, track driving, hard, mountain driving, etc, the PEM is the Roadster's weakness. When the PEM gets hot, the power is reduced to protect the electronics.

When I first got my Roadster, I took a day-long driving lesson at High Plains Raceway outside of Denver. On the first lap, the Roadster was one of the quickest cars on the track. Usually sometime in the second lap, the PEM Hot message would come on and power was cut in half. I think the Model S has a liquid cooled PEM, but it, the motor, and the batteries will still get warm after some hard driving. The car automatically reduces power to protect all the expensive components. Losing a fraction of a second after multiple runs is not bad, and it is a major improvement over the Roadster.

Volker.Berlin | 16 août 2012

Edmunds has some of the most beautiful and some of the most interesting shots of the Model S I have seen to date (and I have seen more than my fair share) in their gallery that accompanies the article:

bsimoes | 17 août 2012

VB-Beautiful pictures and pictures from angles that make things much more clear. For example, the front grille and the pano roof as well as the back seat. These were the first pictures that really showed the dimensionality or depth of the paint. Although the red holds no interest for me, I could see the appeal, whereas I hadn't before. Thanks, Barb

Brian H | 17 août 2012

the glitter is little inclusions, like fish scales in gloss lipstick!


dbbtex | 17 août 2012

Volker.Berlin - Thanks for pointing to the gallery on the Edmunds' test. You're right, some of the best pics yet of the car. Too bad they only had one color to work with!

asblik | 17 août 2012

I have to laugh at folks like mboedigh stating: "For my driving habits, I will easily make up the 20k price difference with savings at the pump"

Let's see $20K = 5,000 gallons gas @ 20MPG => 100,000mi + electricity is not free... let's be optimistic and add $5K for electricity, you're looking at 125,000 miles before you'll break even.

Not a lot folks drive their luxury cars 125,000 miles, assuming average of 12Kmi/yr you'll need more than 10 years before you break even... (and your battery will prolly need to be replaced)

Driving 15Kmi/yr you're looking at more than 8 years before beak even.

I'm HUGE Model S fan but let's just keep things realistic.

asblik | 17 août 2012

One more thing... BMW 550i comes with 4yr free maintenance, Model S you're looking at $600/yr or $2,400 over 4yrs.

550i starts at $62K + boat load for options like any luxury car.

Just keeping it real!

Btw, check out thestreet dotcom ModelS got an awesome review yesterday.

jlloyd | 17 août 2012

I'm very impressed that for the performance and weight, the tires weren't called out for any issues. That's good attention to detail by Tesla in selecting effective tires. Can't wait for the full review

Liz G | 17 août 2012


My 6 year old car has 156k on it and my husbands 4 year old car has 120k on it. So for us we will easily make up the difference plus we have solar so we won't be paying for much electricity to run it.

Liz G | 17 août 2012

Just noticed the kids in the jump seats have cupholders.

Vic M | 17 août 2012

I have posted this before, but my efficiency comparison is ModelS P85 to BMW M5. They are quite equivalent cars in performance, size, and initial cost. I drive 20,000 miles per year, and pay $4.50 per gallon for premium gas and will pay about $0.07/ kw-hr for electricity (PG&E night plan)

So, for the 8-year warranty and 160,000 miles, I would spend about $55,000 in gas at 13 mpg (, and about $3,200 on electricity. Seems like a good deal to me!

This comparison suffers mightily when you look at comparisons of non-performance ModelS to comparable BMW's though. ICE's get much more expensive and less fuel efficient to get from a 5.6 second 0-60 to a 4.4 second clip.

Timo | 17 août 2012


In here $20k equals...lets see... 16,231.65EUR, ~1.7EUR/Liter for gas, one gallon is 3.785411784 Liters = 6.4352000328EUR/gallon ~= 2522 gallons of gas. At 20mpg that's 50440 miles. Lets say 50kmiles. I drive that in about four years, probably less. My sister would drive that in less than three.

Do you still laugh?

BYT | 17 août 2012

"Let's see $20K = 5,000 gallons gas @ 20MPG => 100,000mi + electricity is not free... let's be optimistic and add $5K for electricity, you're looking at 125,000 miles before you'll break even.

Not a lot folks drive their luxury cars 125,000 miles, assuming average of 12Kmi/yr you'll need more than 10 years before you break even... (and your battery will prolly need to be replaced)"

I'm going with Elon's quote where he said he can see the battery going 16 years and have about 30 or 35% capacity loss was it? With my battery pack, I am fine with that!

BTW, today I drove by the gas station closest to my office which charges $4.45 per gallon for REGULAR Unleaded!

Rathjebaxter | 17 août 2012

I drove a Non-performance yeserday at the Austin Get Ampd event and was overwelmed with it. Cant wait. Thing was I got back into my old ICE and the fuel light was on. I cant wait to never have to worry about that thing again.

BYT | 17 août 2012

@Rathjebaxter, like you I test drove the non-perf and still felt the G-force. Now, I have never driven a Roadster or any muscle cars in the last 10 years, but it was still awesome! Glad you liked your drive too!

dubaty | 17 août 2012

I just saw the Edmunds video today. I'm no expert, but it looked like there was very little lateral lean on the slalom at 66.8 mph, which I guess is thanks to the floor mounted battery. Does anybody know how to interpret the skid pad result?

kcveins | 17 août 2012

Here (in Chicago) if you use the RRTP with ComEd, you can get night time rates as low as $0.02-$0.03 /kwH; that makes the price for electricity almost negligible...

jerry3 | 17 août 2012

h8tow8 -- assuming average of 12Kmi/yr

That seems very low. I drive about 16,000 miles per year and I intend to drive more with my Model S because the cost to drive is lower.

I don't think you can classify the Model S as an average luxury car.

Michael37 | 18 août 2012

jerry3: The national average is right around 12,000 per year.

vouteb | 18 août 2012
It also has the best picture of that ugly pano roof bar!
Had never seen that one.
so big and ugly, I am afraid.

pbrulott | 18 août 2012

+ 1 Timo.

Same in Canada. Gas price = $1.45 per liter and growing ($5.55 per USG) and electricity is produced from hydro-electricity paid around 10 cent a kWh). 90% savings. So $20,000 means around 100,000km. 4-5 years with normal driving.

h8tow8, maintenance fees will certainly make a difference.

Brian H | 18 août 2012

As for that 12k average, all the people at the low end of the scale buy Leafs. The rest get Model S.


Volker.Berlin | 18 août 2012

Does anybody know how to interpret the skid pad result? (dubaty)

It tells you how well the car holds onto the road before giving way to the lateral forces. For comparison:

jerry3 | 18 août 2012


Yes, 12,000 is an average, but that includes a lot of non-suburban cars and second cars that really don't drive much. If you did an average of only the primary car I suspect you would get an average more like 16,000 to 20,000.

cerjor | 18 août 2012

I noticed in the picture of the dash that the average energy consumption was about 340 kw which converts to a range of only 250 miles. I hope this is due to the way the car was pushed during the testing. I will be very disappointed if that is my range with my conservative driving style.

Michael37 | 18 août 2012

jerry3: Looks like it varies by age group, with higher averages for people of working age, but the overall average is 13,476.

MB3 | 19 août 2012


You assume way too much. We drive a lot; Nearly 30k/year. (30,000m/20 mpg) * 4$/g = 6000 $/year. I plan to power the whole thing with solar (plates will be SLR EV). So for me it the ROI for the 20k is under 5 years, if I had to pay for it myself. My employer pays for the electric vehicle charge and I sell my excess solar to the grid. so it is even better ROI than that.

I am curious about the eventual battery replacement. In our prius with 200k miles the engine is beginning to fail. When I upgrade the battery in the Tesla will it be "better than new?" because it gets more miles per charge?

kublai | 19 août 2012

I believe Elon said in the last earnings meeting that replacing the battery on the Model S will make it perform near new or even better. Once battery tech improves and costs decrease to competitive prices I think this would make a good selling point for EVs.

Brian H | 19 août 2012

Not entirely the point. Every sub-average there is also a "spread". Cut off the lower 1/3 of the distribution in each one, and the average will jump, depending on how "peaked" the curve is. And car lovers tend to be in the upper ranges, not average or lower.

Another one of those numbers TM will have readily to hand -- user mileage -- which we will just have to guess at from small (probably biased) samples on blogs!

Brian H | 19 août 2012

Yep; the best strategy is to use up your battery in about 5-8 yrs, by which time a much better cheaper one will be available!


Michael23 | 19 août 2012

Yeah, but in 8 years won't you want the new s anyway?

jerry3 | 19 août 2012


I sure hope not :-) Maybe 18 years.

MB3 | 19 août 2012

I already want a new one. Maybe a Tesla X? or gen III

dariopalacios | 30 janvier 2015

What this has to do with Tesla?????

Brian H | 31 janvier 2015

It's spam. Flag it.

sbeggs | 31 janvier 2015


Brian H | 31 janvier 2015