Planning to tow?

Planning to tow?

I am. None of the guys I work with (here at Tesla) know for sure but I'm pretty certain I'll be able to mount a light/medium duty receiver hitch on my S Sport. Everything that makes this an excellent performance car should contribute to making it a great tow vehicle. I'm hoping to purchase a new generation Tear Drop trailer. You've seen the old ones from the 60's, well new versions are available capitalizing on interior sleep space (queen size mattress) and galley accessed from the exterior rear end of the trailer. What a way to tour our National and State Parks! I'll be patient about expanding my exploration as the nationwide Charging Network gets established.

I take my first test drive with three friends on Saturday evening. I'm very stoked! My delivery estimate is by the end of September for a stunning Pacific Blue Model S Sport with the TEC package, Sound Upgrade and black leather interior.

phb | 21 juin 2012

I really hand't planned on towing with my Model S. Do you have any idea where one might be able to mount a hitch receiver on it? It all seems pretty flat under the rear end.

What kind of weights (both tongue and trailer) do you expect the Model S to be able to handle?

phb | 21 juin 2012

Err... hadn't


jedwards | 21 juin 2012

I expect trailer weight to be between 1500 and 2000 lbs. Tongue weight will likely be around 100 lbs. I've been too darn busy to look into it in regard to mounting etc. I figure it's not a deal breaker in any case. It may take a little help from staff members but I've got a good feeling about this.

davecolene0606 | 21 juin 2012

Why hold off on the road trip? Sounds like you might be doin a little camping?
Well, the way I see it, lookin at the charger page, seems like every RV park has a plug fit for an "S"!

Google KOA that'll get ya almost anywhere with an overnight or 4 hour stay.

Not the super charger, but if your stopping to smell the roses anyhoo... Its already doable.


Sudre_ | 21 juin 2012

You might want to also consider the stopping characteristics. I would think the regen braking would make this a slam dunk but I just recently tried to rent a small 500 pound (including trailer) trencher. The rental service said they would not rent it to me because my 2000 pound tow hitch could handle the tongue weight but the car would not be able to stop because the car itself was too light. I told them they were full of crap..... still something to think about.

Roblab | 21 juin 2012

Tesla has said months and months ago that the Model S would not be designed for towing. There are no points to attach tow bars to, and it would ruin the under car aerodynamics. They absolutely do not allow towing with the Model S. This has been their stand on the design almost from day one.

The Model X has been designed for towing.

jkirkebo | 22 juin 2012

I can't see how it would ruin car aerodynamics. Factory mounted hitches these days are mostly all of the removable kind, leaving no trace when they aren't mounted.

jedwards | 22 juin 2012

Towing would be only on occasion but as mentioned, it's not a make it or break it deal. I seem to recall seeing a 1" hitch on Elon's Roadster so I'm guessing that out of the box considerations such as a hitch on a Model S isn't too far fetched. Thanks for offering good thoughts in the thread replies.

petero | 22 juin 2012

I doubt aerodynamics is the reason TM is discouraging tow hitches on th”S.” Most installers weld and bolt a steel hitch to the steel frame/subframe on ‘normal’ cars. The “S’s” aluminum frame will likely not lend itself to welding or bolting traditional aftermarket tow hitches. The vibration and strain will likely loosen the connection and that could get very ugly.

If towing is critically important, you may wish to delaying getting your “S” until after the “X” comes out. The “X” will probably have the tow hitch available. Since the “X and S” will share substantially the same chassis, it seems reasonable that a tow hitch option may be available on the “S” in the second model year, as TM moves to expand production and maximize the economy of scale on the chassis.

TM had a tight deadline to create a car, a factory, a company, and deliver the “S” before July 31, 2012. The first year model of a car seldom offers everything-Automobiles are evolutionary rather than revolutionary. In the case of the “S” it will be the reverse.

Just my opinion. It is 7:30AM PST, an overcast, Los Angeles morning. A little later the sun will come out … and so will the model “S.” A great day.

Volker.Berlin | 22 juin 2012

That was JB Straubel, towing his new fridge with his Roadster for 300 miles: ;-)

On the other hand, a tow hitch option on the Model X seems to be practically confirmed, even if not mentioned on Tesla's website:

Volker.Berlin | 22 juin 2012

(Someone should open a refrigerator store in Menlo Park. There's a glaring business opportunity!)

kbekaert | 24 septembre 2012

A solution to extend the range:
only 1 drawback: max speed 100Km/h (62mph)

BYT | 24 septembre 2012

@kbekaert, as I understand it, the car cannot be charged while it's in motion so this solution wouldn't work? Unless it taps right into the Model S battery but I'm not sure I would want to do that either and risk my warranty.

Volker.Berlin | 24 septembre 2012

BYT, you could still drag it along and have your private outlet handy wherever you decide to pause for a charge... ;-)

Judging from Elon's attitude, he is not going to officially support or endorse anything like that.

toto_48313 | 24 septembre 2012

@kbekaert: I love the idea... as this answer a needs for 2 or 3 times a year.

David70 | 24 septembre 2012

You'd still need to convert the DC to AC if you're going to charge from an outlet. Charging DC to DC would at best end up with half the total energy in each battery. Converting is also going to have losses.

Brian H | 24 septembre 2012

Weird phrasing, above: "it is not be possible". I guess the "be" floated in from a previous edit.