What else $100K can buy

What else $100K can buy

I'm undecided on Tesla S yet, still doing extensive research.
I agree with most of you folks that Tesla is an exceptional car as far as the innovation (EV), design, acceleration, safety and stability go.
Luxury is another thing. I don't think that Tesla is a luxury car. Below is a long list of "luxury" and "advanced technology" features in the new MB S550.
Which ones does Tesla have? I think none.
Furthermore there is an honest opinion by Tesla P85 owner posted on this forum that I copied at the bottom confirming once again that Tesla's ride is anything but luxury.

************ //////////// ***********

• Heated armrests. Heated front seats and now even heated rears and steering wheels are moving down the auto food chain, so this was the obvious next frontier for luxury.

• "Hot stone" massage. To mimic a hot-stone massage, Mercedes developed a programmable system with 14 separately actuated air cushions in the seat back that can work with the electric heating. Folks who have a driver -- or who have really pampered kids or pets -- also can order this for their rear seat.

• Aromatherapy air. The "Air Balance Package" filters and ionizes cabin air -- and scents it in your choice of flavors.

• Woofers in the firewall, not the doors. In an M-B first, the bass drivers in the firewall that use space in the cross and side pieces as the resonance chamber. Three sound systems are offered.

• Mood lighting. Optional ambient lighting for the interior provides soft accents all around in a choice of seven colors to suit your mood.

• A throne in the back. Up front it's nice, but M-B also wants to sell the S550 in markets where buyers routinely have a driver. They can order from a choice of rear seat packages that offer reclining up to 43.5 degrees, a foot rest, cupholders that heat or cool, folding tables and heat, ventilation and massage in the seat. You also get, of course, your own climate and entertainment controls and screens. The recliner even gets a special air bag to keep the occupant from sliding under his or her seat belt in a crash.

• "Magic Body Control." The option uses cameras see imperfections in the road ahead and continuously adjusts the suspension to handle them. Allegedly S550 can drive over speed bumps at 25 mph without feeling it.

• Safety systems that may be smarter than you are. Mercedes says the car offers more than 30 standard and optional active and passive safety technologies it calls Intelligent Drive.

- Radar-based adaptive cruise control that also makes steering corrections.

- front collision system that can stop the car from up to 31 mph without your input and slow it enough to partially mitigate a crash from up to 45 mph.

- rear collision system that takes action to prepare the safety features if it sense a rear ender coming.

- system that senses cross-traffic with stereoscopic cameras and will hit the brakes.

- lane keeping system that steers. A blind spot system that will brake.

****************** ///////////// *****************

... my P85 feels like the MB on the Sport 1 setting. My Tesla is only one week young, but my wife would like a softer setting. You can feel the tar lines in the road through the seat. I like the feedback. After all it is a performance model.

Tiebreaker | 21 octobre 2013

If this is what you are looking for, then by all means buy a MB S550.

Mark K | 21 octobre 2013

Mercedes is good at those comfort details, but the overall experience of driving the S is more satisfying to me. My $100K Mercedes sits in the driveway, but doesn't see much use.

The new MB S Class is also a serious step backwards in exterior aesthetics to my eye. The car simply looks fat.

It's old-school frumpy. By contrast, the looks of the MS make me just want to grab it and take it for a spin.

The thing with all those frills is that the novelty wears off. Of the $20K or so in options on my last Mercedes, only 10% of them are routinely part of my drives.

If you like the new S Class, get it. That's for a very different customer than who's buying a Model S now.

rsampsonjr | 21 octobre 2013

I had an S550 before getting my P85, would not even consider getting the new S550. Yes the Mercedes has more safety/luxury features, but I bought the Tesla for performance. I could go down your list item by item, but the only thing I miss on the Tesla is the active cruise control. I have also owned a 740i and A8L W12, but I have no plans on going back to any of them. I bought the best car and have zero regrets, but to each their own. Good luck with your decision.

AmpedRealtor | 21 octobre 2013

As criticism of the Model S you offer a quote from another owner, and then proclaim, based upon said quote, that "Tesla's ride is anything but luxury"? I have an idea. As radical as this may sound, please stay with me... I don't want to lose you, because what I'm about to suggest may be quite remarkable, innovative, and downright revolutionary. Here it comes... wait for it...

Schedule a test drive and form your own opinion!

AmpedRealtor | 21 octobre 2013

@ RIsquare - One last thing I forgot to mention in my last post. If you are looking for a car that will carry you smoothly over a speed bump while traveling at 25 MPH, and while receiving a hot stone Reiki massage and aromatherapy, I'm saddened to tell you that Model S is not the car for you.

Let us know how you like the S550.

Tiebreaker | 21 octobre 2013

Sit on the throne and enjoy your aromatherapy, while you and your pet are getting hot-stone(d)-massaged.

(sorry, could not resist... now I am fighting the mental image...)

xradr | 21 octobre 2013

Luxury is quite a loosely used term that has no objective standard. For many people in the world, clean/safe/potable water is a luxury.

For me, my P85 was quite a luxurious upgrade from my honda civic hybrid (160K miles, still going strong BTW). I very much consider the MS a luxury vehicle. In fact, I consider my honda a luxury upgrade from my prior mode of transportation (muni bus).

I guess perspective really might be the key here. Based on what I can infer from what you value in a car/luxury is something quite different than what the MS can provide right now. So, if time is a concern and you absolutely need a new car now, get the MB S550. I know you will not be disappointed.

If you can hold off for 4 more years, I suspect the major product revision to the MS (5 year cycle) will include more of the luxury features you desire.


AmpedRealtor | 21 octobre 2013

Wait... I don't see a pedicure or manicure option for the S550. Mercedes must surely be doomed...

cmaso | 21 octobre 2013

but this one goes to 11...

jonlivesay | 21 octobre 2013

Tesla Model S 85 kwh battery goes 265 miles on a range charge.
S550 goes zero. Tesla owners have the best luxury, not buying gas and free travel along supercharger network.

Roamer@AZ USA | 21 octobre 2013

Your math is off a little.

You can buy a 100,000 gas burner and then pump 20 to 30k of gas in to it.


You can buy a 100,000 Tesla and assume 25k of the price is batteries that replace the gas so the car is really 75k with a 25 fuel credit. You are buying a 75k car and prepaying to not buy gas. My Tesla energy cost is a penny a mile. My BMW cost 25 cents a mile.

That extra 25k is the price of bells and whistles the Tesla currently does not have. But then a flat panel 17 inch screen is a dam big bell in my book. Losing the 800 small print buttons I can not read in the Benz is also a major whistle.

Drove a fully loaded maxed out special order BMW 760i before the Tesla. The Tesla ruined me. It is such a joy to drive I don't miss any of the bells and whistles. I even learned that my loved adaptive cruise was not really that big of a deal.

cmaso | 21 octobre 2013

@roamer off a little? dont forgrt that all those options take the s550 to $140k.

Suturecabre | 21 octobre 2013

The new S550 looks more elegant but less sporty and nowhere near the presence the W221 had when it came out....But that was Feb. 2006 in the US and it was quite a departure in styling compared to other cars at that time (it did influence styling trends for years to come....the forward-sloping body contour line was quickly picked up by Nissan's Altima and others and became ubiquitous, while the CLS started a whole new segment, of which the Model S is technically a part of. Of course, they did incorporate things from others as well like the Bangle Butt and Audi LED DRLs), and the new W222 maintains the same proportions and profile so it's not nearly as aggressive a change. Many people might not realize it's even a new model.....There's no question that's not the case with the Model S, even in areas where they are more plentiful people notice it.

Realize this: The S550, with double-paned glass and heavy robust construction, is near in weight to the Model S, which while being a large car the S is smaller and lacking many of the gadgets and gizmos. For them to have incorporated all that and features like self-closing doors, 3000psi hydraulic suspension and air bladders in the seats, it would have increased the weight too much and put too much electrical drain, while increasing complexity beyond Tesla's comfort level. The S550 has 2 large lead-acid batteries and a 220amp alternator, huge for a car. The Model S comes close enough in features and strikes a reasonable balance, and having an opulent interior would clash with its minimalist practical ethos.

I have the older S550 and while I love it and am going to miss some of the pampering and technology (even if I keep the car I wouldn't be driving it much!), it can't do what the Model S does, and that's why we all want a Model S, isn't it?

Bikezion | 21 octobre 2013

+1 AmpedRealtor!

RIsquare $100,000 will buy a lot of things. It's a good chunk of a house, a start at investing, a start at multiple small businesses, a whole lot of options for various gas cars, and a whole host of other possibilities.
I haven't driven a 2014 Mercedes Benz S550. I have owned or do own a 1992 Mercedes 190e, various different classic Range Rovers, and a 1996 Range Rover Supercharged. I have driven a Mercedes 300e and BMW 740 and 528 and 540i also a 03 M5.
I have driven a Model S, it probably isn't as nice inside as the newest S class, or the latest 7 series, all the gimmicky stuff is MIA, but it is incredible! It makes you giddy. The Tesla drivetrain is superior in every way possible! And because of that the car can be far superior! Just in the safety factors, how much is that worth? The people buying the current Model S are changing the future of the automobile industry! The dealer model, the service model, the gas station model, all these are getting turned upside down. The Model S owner can refuel their car from their own home, if they buy their own fueling station (solar), they power their home and their car on their own, self sufficiency at its finest! No middle eastern oil, no wars to "protect" our "right" to the oil. No military guarding the shipping channels. This is huge! This is awesome! Schedule that test drive!

RIsquare | 21 octobre 2013

I drive S550 as well, that is 7 y.o. now. Yes, I do agree with other posters and aromatherapy, massage and reclining back seats are not my cup of tea either.
However the overall comfort and convenience are.
Think of it - what is more important in the typical traffic situations we experience daily - 4.4 sec. acceleration or the ability of the car to drive itself in the traffic.
Does it help you that your car is zero emissions if everyone else is not and you breathe it. The charcoal filter in MB at least filters it out.
As far as clean, silent and economical mean of transportation no question Tesla is the champion.
However it doesn't feel good to pay $100K for a car and to count the bumps on the road with your butt.
That's why it is so hard to decide I speak for myself and BTW I did test drive Tesla.

RIsquare | 21 octobre 2013


100% agree with you on the environmental impact. Actually I did install my solar already 30 kW on the roof. I'm driving Chevy Volt for short commutes in town in full electric mode lasts 42 miles.
I also started a thread about "fast charging" directly from solar, but obviously this forum is not that technical. I have to find a better one for that.

jcaspar1 | 21 octobre 2013

Not sure there are any of those features that really appeal to me. Seems like they are mainly for people who don't like to drive. My mom has a CLS 55AMG. It is a fast, reasonably well built car but no fun at all to drive...

Gizmotoy | 21 octobre 2013

@RIsquare: However it doesn't feel good to pay $100K for a car and to count the bumps on the road with your butt.

I'm the opposite. If I've bought a car and I can't feel the bumps in the road with my butt, I've chosen the wrong car. I want fast and fun, and certainly don't want to feel isolated from the road or driving experience.

Though, I'd probably be in something like a Nissan GT-R if it weren't for the potential for kids in the near future, so maybe I'm weird.

tezzla.SoCal | 21 octobre 2013

I had a 2010 S550 and was going to buy the 2014 model but after test driving a Tesla; Nope. I've had my Tesla MS85 for 10 weeks and couldn't be happier. I'll never buy another ICE car!

GDH | 21 octobre 2013

Anyone want to buy my Volvo?, love it but can't want to be in a Tesla.

Roamer@AZ USA | 21 octobre 2013


The title of the post was what else 100k can buy, so I based my comment on 100k

My P85+ cost $127,000 (my second Tesla, May 16th delivery), round to 120k after tax deduction. Included in that price is 20k of gas I won't buy. So it is basically a 100k car compared to the s550 loaded up at $140k and no energy prepay. Apples to apples comparison.

So with the Benz you are talking 40k for the bells and whistles. Put another 40k into the S and things would be equal. The S is a much better value. I find that at some point all the systems just become a headache to deal with. But then I drove a Dodge Viper SRT 10 because it was a beast and you actually had to drive it. Was brutal to drive and I enjoyed every minute of driving it. Had almost no do dads and trinkets.

PS at 140 the Viper drove like polished glass. Trouble was there just are not many places you can drive at that speed.

Long Island | 21 octobre 2013

But does the Merc make grilled cheese sandwiches??? I thought so.

GDH | 21 octobre 2013

Roamer is right, title say what can you buy for $100K.

You can buy my Volvo and a loaner Model S, bam!

Mike T | 21 octobre 2013

I agree with Roamer. The MS is more of a E class or 5 series competitor in my mind as they will end up costing the same after a couple years. Those are considered luxury cars as well but more on the sporty side like the MS.

levi.maina | 21 octobre 2013

What you are describing is simple "Creature comforts".
They have nothing to do with Breath taking technology. If Tesla has taught us anything it is this....When Tesla embarks on a mission they do it better than anybody else!!!

Tesla is young..they just released their first car and knocked it out of the park, they're making everything themselves and learning to do so in a hurry.

Wait until they finish working on the AUTONOMOUS CAR and those little features you are talking about will be completely integrated and probably designed BETTER than what u see in MB & BMW.

Elon and company have owned these exotic cars u are talking about...d u think they dont know anything about interior design and quality??? REALLY? It's just a matter of time before you see a great interior design on PAR OR BETTER THAN anything out there.

cmaso | 21 octobre 2013

@roamer spot on. MS is a $100 k car S550 isn't.

BTW. $100k could have bought about 2,800 shares of TSLA, that would buy you both a P85+ and an S550 today with $200k to spare.

Rheumboy | 21 octobre 2013

I think the comment that the S is for someone riding in the back tells it all. I think most of us want the driving experience.

donaldmeacham1 | 21 octobre 2013

I think it is pretty remarkable that a new automobile company's first mass produced vehicle is being compared to the rest of the automobile industry's finest products. All of the competitors have been trying to perfect their vehicles for decades. The model S is truly " disruptive " technology.

Dwdnjck@ca | 21 octobre 2013

If you haven't yet driven the S, you simply don't know. I would not trade my S for any car. I have owned to 7 series and driven them 90,000 miles each and I never washed either of them myself. I wash my S. No car makes you smile like the S. No car compels you to waste time on its forums ike the S.

GDH | 21 octobre 2013

I agree with Dwdnjck. I have been a Volvo owner for 15 years. I love my current S60 but with Tesla it was love at first site and drive. It is like no other....I cannot wait for my Volvo to sell so I can buy a Model S.

Brit.l.T | 21 octobre 2013

I get the interior point for sure. There is a lot lacking in the model S in terms of details. However as a previous E550 owner, luxury has a different meaning for me now. Luxury is not having to deal with MB service center (Minnesota is awful!), not having my battery die every time I return from work trip, not replacing the over priced battery every year because it wont jump, and all the little things that broke throughout my ownership (central computer, parking sensors, something with the steering) .

Luxury is cruising by the gas station waving. Luxury is not having to get my sleeping child out of the car to pay for gas if the pump breaks, or standing outside in the snow/rain/heat.

Best part... my 2 year old thinks every car has to charge. No concept of a gas station.

That is awesome.

Dwdnjck@ca | 21 octobre 2013

My wife has a near new E-Class, she borrows my S. I get to take her E in for service and have it washed. Her car is nice but not compelling.

howbud | 21 octobre 2013

I ordered my 85P yesterday. I feel you are really asking the wrong questions. The math really doesn't make sense for any of the vehicles mentioned. You take a bath on all high end luxury cars that aren't collectibles. 14K on up for sure. Don't buy a 100K car if you don't want huge depreciation.
I've owned many cars including a H1 before the H2 came out. I loved the experience. When I had enough, I moved back to a XJ8.
Driving the Tesla was like no other ride I had experienced. It's cool on so many levels. A unique ride that no other can match. It's safe. Faster then the others. You don't have to go to a GAS STATION and pay for that Petrol. No getting out and filling up in bad weather. Wow factor beyond the others. It's good for the environment.
I will enjoy the unique experience of driving something different than any other vehicle I have driven in the past. I will enjoy watching the look on friends and family when they are passengers. I guarantee it won't be the same type of reaction you will get from the high end imports.
But that's just me.

Roamer@AZ USA | 21 octobre 2013


Hmmm ...Wonder if I did something better with my investment capital that allowed me to buy two cars for cash this year. Not trying to be a jerk, just don't second guess people's investments. If I have any money when I die the government is just going to confiscate and waste 1/2 of it so, what the heck, better to blow it and be irresponsible.

I admit I completely avoid publicly traded companies and only invest in things I can own and control. Hate to be someone's pigeon to be plucked by a public company that pays its management and insiders by diluting my holdings with stock issues.

Had a fun deal ten years ago that was a 50k investment and a little work. Ten years later my Return on my capital is 30,500 %. I would have been happy with 30 or 40%. It just worked out well.

I do really like Tesla and hope everyone who invests makes a killing over the next ten years. I would love to see Tesla spank all the legacy car builders and create wealth for many with their success.

2k13458 | 21 octobre 2013

The extensive use of synthetic materials (plastics, vinyls, etc.) disappointed me the first time I sat in a MS.

I believe there would be a market for a luxury appointed MS for 130K-150K. Think of Tesla's profit margin on these cars?

Low CG | 21 octobre 2013

Am I the only one thinking the "luxury features" of the MB S550 are getting silly? I don't currently have a MB, but I do have a BMW and a Cadillac with a lot of bells and whistles . . . and they're getting dusty as I look for any reason to forgo them and jump in my rocket ship (AKA the Model S P85).

Roamer@AZ USA | 22 octobre 2013

@2k. I like the clean look of the S interior. But I would really like a few door pockets to put my extra fast food napkins in.....

cmaso | 22 octobre 2013

@Roamer - Was just saying, it's something you could have done with $100k...

Also, in my earlier post I was trying to make the point that the S550 (with all the options you mentioned) isn't something else you could buy for $100k, so I don't understand the comparison.

Honestly, if I was given the option to get a loaded S550 or my MS 60 for free (note: I said MS 60, not MS P85+) but would have to pay all operating costs and give it back after 5 years with no residual I would take the MS 60. And a P85+ is a no brainer... but that's me.

Curious, have you had a chance to drive the P85? If so, what did you think of it? If not, I would really recommend you take it for a spin, and let us know what you think.

Mr. Salamanzar | 22 octobre 2013

Doing extensive research w/out actually driving a Model S is like trying to buy a surfboard or anything else that needs to be engaged and experienced live. I agonized myself to near death and lamented that there were no power folding mirrors, etc. I was just like everyone else before they pulled the trigger. The experience of driving the car is what did it for me. Every time I'm in an ICE at this point I can't help but think of and picture the many thousands of controlled explosions are taking place under the hood. Yes, after 100+ years they can control and mask the inherit weaknesses of that design well. If you aren’t really a surfer, but are in to wrist watches, maybe this anology sums it up: Wrist watches are still made with mechanical movements, and yes, a Rolex or Panerai can do a pretty good job of keeping time. But people don't really buy those sorts of watches because they to tell time. The MB is a Rolex; the MS is an atomic clock.

That’s my $.02 and look forward to your updates after you have driven once and felt that sensory rush.

Roamer@AZ USA | 22 octobre 2013


Got my red S 85 in March and loved it, then drove my brothers P85 a few months ago and it was all over, ordered a dark greyP85+. I have two performance X models on order because I wanted all wheel drive, a little more room and a taller easier car to get in. But after driving the P I decided I could not wait another year for the X. Will take a beating on trades or resells but that's part of being a Teslaholic. You are right about the investment advice, but sometimes it is nice to just be a little crazy.

Sorry if I was obnoxious in my posts. I should learn not to post late at night. Thanks for a great discussion and some thought provoking comments. Drive safe.

cmaso | 22 octobre 2013

@Roamer - you are fine... Actually, I mistakenly thought the "hmmmm..." post was from the person who started this forum.

@RIsquare - Curious, have you had a chance to drive the P85? If so, what did you think of it? If not, I would really recommend you take it for a spin, and let us know what you think.

fuellss | 22 octobre 2013

RIsquare- Seems to me like you have already made your pointed out lots of features, Im sure these are important to have for you, so enjoy your MB..Roamer-I had a P85 as a loaner, my husband loved it,he thought about trading up. but I have found that I actually prefer to drive slow, it just prolongs the time get to be in the car listening to music, I also love red lights, gives me time to search or think about music I want to request..the 85 is fast enough for me to switch lanes on the freeway.OH, we have the dark grey and its beautiful...

DallasTXModelS | 22 octobre 2013

First thing I thought of was 100,000 things from the dollar store but then again my 85kwh only came up to $82220 so I'm obviously not on the same thought wave anyway.

MandL | 22 octobre 2013

An Aston Martin Rapide S doesn't have any of the things in the OP's list (it does have power folding mirrors and front/rear parking sensors though!). I guess it's not a luxury car either.

arieljoshua | 22 octobre 2013

If that is what you are after, go buy the Mercedes.

Jewsh | 22 octobre 2013


"A throne in the back"

Not sure I want a toilet in my 'S although I'll admit I've spent some long hours stuck in traffic. Could've been handy... Nah. I think I'll pass.

thranx | 22 octobre 2013

"Hot stone massage". "Aromatherapy."

Buy a model S and take a few luxury trips to India.

TikiMan | 22 octobre 2013

If those features are important to you, by all means buy a MB.

For me, riding single occupancy in the HOV lane surpasses MB's fufu options. In my world, time is money, and sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic is a huge loss of serious money! Never mind, watching up-to-the-second stock prices on my 17" touch-screen, without having to take my eyes off the road to look at a tiny phone (risking a ticket, or my life), trumps heated armrest, message seats, etc any day of the week for me. But that's just me.

We all have different needs in our lives, that's why Tesla gave us an option.

sergiyz | 22 octobre 2013

Well said.
I pass lambos and mclarens together with porsches and BMWs every day while they all seat in traffic burning gas for nothing with all their fancy features and great performance ;)

TikiMan | 22 octobre 2013


Thanks! A funny thing happened to me the other day... As I was getting on the freeway in Los Angeles, someone in an Audi R8 V10+ was deliberately trying to stay ahead of me (as if we were racing, which I wasn't). Traffic was moving at a steady rate, and he was weaving in and out of traffic (very dangerous), so he could stay ahead of me in regular traffic (while I was cruising in the HOV lane at 85 MPH). All the sudden he had to stop in bumper-to-bumper traffic, while I passed him (again) with my Tesla grin.

That must be really painful knowing that even though you own a very expensive $200k exotic sport-car, no amount of money will buy you a single-occupancy pass to the HOV lane club! ;-)