Why 70D?

Why 70D?

There's only one reason in my mind why TM would create the 70D, considering that the flagship models have only 15 kWh larger batteries, and that reason is that all of the 85's will be replaced by 100 kWh models in 2016. These models will all have advertised ranges of about 350 miles, and the performance version 0-60 time will drop to 2.9 seconds.

We'll see!

eye.surgeon | 10 avril 2015

I believe what you have done with your subject line is referred to as click bait.

luckyluciano | 10 avril 2015

And created much FUD . Thanks.

JGB | 11 avril 2015

Tesla better speed up the delivery of the X and stop trying to sell upgraded 85’s to the same 10,000 early adapters.

Alaa | 11 avril 2015

The 70D makes a lot sense. 0 to 60 is not as important as the range, especially if you can do 0 to 60 in less than 6 seconds. 6 seconds is already fast enough. Just like in Germany there is this mutually agreed speed limit of 250 km/h. I think that this insane 0 to 6 in less than 3 seconds should be avoided. The reasons are many. The human reflex time, others that are using the roads should not suffer from someone who is young and able and just wants to race! The police cars should have the edge; the list can be long here.

The bottom line is that even the slowest model S is fast enough already.

bonaire | 11 avril 2015

Honestly, why is range important? How many drive over the full state of charge range on a daily basis? For trips?

I remember a post a while back which showed a picture of the supercharge large-screen display at Fremont, IIRC. It appeared the average recharge at the superchargers at the time was about 35 kWh. So, yeah - lot of people may fully charge or range-charge. But larger batteries may only appear with the newer 20700 battery size and better chemistries involved. That allows the same sized battery chamber to hold more kWh. This may need to wait until the GF is done or if Panasonic does a switch to 20700 cells before the GF so there is experience building packs with them.

Today, I will be driving about 60 miles total through the course of the day. Monday, 42, next Friday 55.

More than 70 is great for those with massive commutes like in long-range commute country of the Bay Area or Los Angeles who don't have at-work charging and don't want to supercharge. A 100 mile one-way commute every day is horrible but if done 2-3 days a week, that still leads to 30K to 35K miles a year.

HbrwHmr | 11 avril 2015

@Alaa: I disagree. The only reason I will be willing to spend so much on a Tesla is because it will eliminate my desire to purchase a third car. Aside from the technology, the performance is one of the main reasons I'm looking at it. Otherwise I'd just get a practical sedan and a used Viper for less money.

Police helicopters and radios have the edge. They shouldn't be conducting 'fast and furious' high speed pursuits. My buddy's Ducati does 0-60 in 2.7 and can split cars on the freeway. Should he not be allowed to own this because the he can outrun any car while on public streets?

What of the people who are completely responsible on the streets but like to drag or track their vehicles?

Personally, I wouldn't even consider a 70 and I'm hoping for a 95 or 100 that does under 3 by the time I'm ready to buy. There are already factory cars (not as practical obviously) in this price range that throw down these numbers. I am glad to see that there are models and option ranges to cover a broad range of niches. I think they're moving in the right direction.

Ddowns2050 | 11 avril 2015

@bonaire Range is important to me. I live in the Midwest where there are very few superchargers. Today I'm driving 220 miles one way and won't be able to use the car for a few hours once I get there. (No supercharger there) I agree on a daily basis the 85D I have has plenty of range. But I take many trips and sometimes have to take the ICE.

Until there are more superchargers it is important at least to me unless I want to drive the ICE and I hate doing that now.

TytanX | 11 avril 2015

70D is because the range was to low on a Model X60. Not saying the 85 isnt on the way out but if it is, it will have morw to do with the Xs rangr again.

milesbb | 11 avril 2015

I believe Tesla changed from the 60 to the 70D because the 60 was not selling in enough numbers. Because the change was very simple, just populate the existing battery pack with a few more 18650’s. Because the cost of batteries has gone down. Because Tesla has decided to migrate to the D version exclusively. Because other manufactures are talking about having 200 mile EV’s, Tesla wants to avoid range overlap with competitors. Because Tesla wants to stimulate additional demand.

carlk | 11 avril 2015

Elon has already said it. The main purpose is to attract people in the $50K~60K, E class and 5 series, market who could not afford a $100K 85 but don't like the range of 60. That actually is a great point. There are less and less reasons to buy the BMW or MB now with the 70D.

luckyluciano | 11 avril 2015

perhaps the "E" will occupy the 60kwh battery.

AmpedRealtor | 11 avril 2015

This is just my speculation...

Larger batteries are coming to the Model X. The fact that Tesla removed reference to 60 and 85 batteries on their Model X page is very telling. The writing is on the wall that larger batteries are coming to the Model S. Elon has to say that larger batteries are not coming to the S for a while because otherwise people will stop buying the car and will wait for the larger battery.

Things are lining up quite nicely. The Model X will come with 85 and 100 pack capacities, which will give Model X comparable range to the Model S 70 and 85. This will look good on paper and will mean that purchasers of the Model X will not have to sacrifice anything in the range department. That's a really big deal because the vast majority of Model X customers are looking for practicality over performance. Range is in the practicality column.

After all the buzz over Model X has died down by early next year is when Tesla will discontinue the 85 S in favor of the 100. This will also be the same time Tesla kills the S85 RWD. Model X will carry LED headlamps and a slew of surprise features that we don't know about. In 2016 Tesla will restyle the Model S to give it feature parity with the Model X. Model X will likely have version 2.0 of the Autopilot sensors, and hopefully side and rear radar, and those will migrate to the Model S next year.

I foresee a major Model S retooling next year and I wouldn't want to be buying one today. It's difficult for me to imagine Tesla not giving the Model S feature parity with the Model X next year. I'm getting ready for a wild 2016.

Blueshift | 11 avril 2015

For every 4.6 70s sold that otherwise would have been an 85s there, is now sufficient battery capacity to build a whole new 70 (4.6x15=70). That is, by moving some future customers from 85 to 70 more cars can be sold with same fixed battery capacity.

I don't really know if that was a consideration, or if that math works out to net positive revenue. But if so, it would have made Tesla's decision to sell the 70 less risky.

carlk | 11 avril 2015

@AmpedRealtor Elon has already said 70D will also goes to the base model X. My best guess is 70D and 100D for both X and S later part of this year.

Mathew98 | 11 avril 2015

Perhaps that 100D AWD/battery combo would be the launching pad for the pickup truck. It would have enough torque and range for a pickup. Just raise the suspension a few inches and firm it up a bit, add thicker tires, and a flatbed off the skate design and off we go...

Perhaps TM will launch the pickup truck base on the M3 platform instead for a light duty pickup.

NomoDinos | 11 avril 2015

AR - you beat me to it :)

This looks like a smart repositioning of the line-up, both to make room for the Model 3 at the entry level and larger battery(batteries?) up top.

Further rampant speculation might lead us to believe the all is going well with the giga-factory development!

Exciting times! I'm betting Teo is giggling wildly in his British-tailored pants ;)

Son of a Gunn | 11 avril 2015

@AmpedRealtor just came back from the future.
Nailed it.
Bet on that 100%.

Son of a Gunn | 11 avril 2015

In 2016 the design refresh of the Model S will get a proper front end. The nosecone will disappear and instead it will resemble the Aston Martin Rapide.

JiveMiguel | 11 avril 2015

Why not 70D?

Seriously, here's my absolutely uninformed prediction: the Model 3 will be introduced with 45kW (base, $35k & 160 mile range) and 60kW (uprgrade, $45k, 200 mile range) versions, which will compliment the Model S. Of course, your mileage may vary, and all prices/battery capacities subject to change.

DTsea | 11 avril 2015

Base MX will probably need 70 to make 200 miles.

Thats why. | 11 avril 2015

+1 DTsea: right you are. Adding about 854 18650 cells to the 60 KWh pack is a straightforward development. 70 kWh gives the entry MX barely 200 rated miles range. Popping the 70 kwh pack into the MS refreshes the entry MS with more range at a little higher price when MS60 sales are flagging. The high end battery pack for the X will likely IMO remain at 85 kWh as long as Panasonic is shipping cells from Japan or wherever. Battery cells with more capacity should be expected from the GF in maybe 2H16 earliest. Assuming they will be lower cost as well, Tesla could offer a lighter, reduced cost 85 kWh pack as well as a higher capacity pack in the same box. At that point the 70 kwh pack could be discontinued. The higher capacity pack could be maybe 100-110 kwh, if per cell capacity can be increased by 20-30% at about the same weight as today's 85 kwh pack.

The new, lighter 85 pack could be maybe $7000 cheaper to build than today's 85 assuming Tesla currently pays about $2/cell today. 7100 cells could become as few as about 5000 and the cost to Tesla maybe as low as $1.40 per cell. This speculation is based on Tesla's estimate of at least 30% cost savings for GF produced cells and JB Straubel's estimates that energy density could be increased by 30%. Tesla could use some of the savings to reduce prices somewhat while increasing profit.

How's that for some WAGs?

vinniechadha | 11 avril 2015

I just changed my 85D order to 70D with same options and saved $12k tax in.

Chunky Jr. | 11 avril 2015

I think one of the reasons they released the 70D is to have more people beta test the Model X platform/software.

Bobrrr | 11 avril 2015

I am going to wait for the Model S P180D before I upgrade! :)

Miggy | 11 avril 2015

I think the 70D will start to outsell the 85's

Rocky_H | 11 avril 2015

I think @Blueshift was onto it. I saw on Facebook someone had posted a S[ucking] Alpha article on that theory. If they can pull some of the potential 85 buyers down into the S70D, and shift that ratio, that lets them build a few more cars with the same amount of battery cells.

Brian H | 12 avril 2015

I think the latest ratio was about 15:85. Quite a change to get even to 50:50!

Miggy | 12 avril 2015

Wait and see, the gap between the 60 and the 85's was too big with no Super Charging. get back to me in 6 months and see what the sales are then.

bonaire | 12 avril 2015

@Rocky_H - they could have built "more cars" using 60, rather than 70. I think it was as simple as using 15 modules of batteries with the 85 using 16 modules and 60 using 14 modules. So, that may make the 70 a 72.5 kWh battery with a little software management. The 70D offers more car per dollar than the 85D and allows someone to get almost as many miles, the same car, options and so on for a lot less. It is a value play and should lead to more sales if people turned away from the 85 models due to price and didn't want to pay the price of an MS 60 for limited range. If 70 really offers almost 72 kWh of capacity (my speculation as well as others on TMC) then it really is a good value. I can see why some 85D orders are switching out to 70D for the value offered.

Red Sage ca us | 12 avril 2015

I have every intention to remain young, and able, and willing to race for at least the next seventy-five years.

Cops will be replacing their Camaro, Challenger, and Mustang based Interceptors with electric cars within a decade.

Range is important to those of us who may vacation in or retire to places that have actual weather.

Enthusiasts and Naysayers alike will come to realize Tesla Motors will never again offer a vehicle in any configuration with less than 200 miles EPA rated range, and that by 2020, they will no longer offer anything that cannot eclipse 300 miles with ease.

Tesla Motors may choose, with the release of Model X, to begin choosing nomenclature that refers to range potential rather than battery pack size -- or not.

VIA Motors gets away with a ~24 kWh battery pack and ~40 miles of fully electric range on their converted, range extended pickup trucks, but don't sell to the public, only to fleets.

Anything less than 135 kWh capacity would be insufficient for operation of a fully electric full-sized pickup truck with proper GVWR combined with a Class I tow rating as a bare minimum -- and even that might not make it the full distance between Superchargers when fully loaded.

Rocky_H | 13 avril 2015

@bonaire, Quote: "@Rocky_H - they could have built "more cars" using 60, rather than 70."

Apparently you missed the point of what I said. Of Model S buyers, there was a really small percentage of them that were buying the 60. The vast majority were going with the 85 instead, because of feeling the 60 was not enough range. I said that the S70D probably is going to be able to attract some of the 85 buyers down to a 70.

I suppose it's balancing two things, and they'll have to see how the numbers shake out.

Of the tiny number of car that were 60, they go up to 70: 10 kwh extra per car.
Of the much larger number of 85 cars, some percent will opt down to 70: 15 kwh less per car.

PhillyGal | 13 avril 2015

For any potential new owners reading this:
My husband and I were speculating whether we would have gotten a 70D over S85 had they been available. I think yes, he thinks no.

But - he only thinks no because at the time we were configuring we (obviously) had not yet lived with a Tesla and would have assumed that we absolutely needed the extra range. As it turns out, most folks really don't need that little bit of extra range. If the 2015 supercharger map ends up a reality, this is even more true.

As it stands, only one of our trips is questionable right now. The minute that darn Allentown PA supercharger gets built, it will no longer be an issue and quite frankly, zero of our trips will require an 85 over what a 70D has to offer as far as range goes.

Enjoy the ride, owners and enthusiasts! This is a fun time to be a Tesla fan.

buickguy | 13 avril 2015

I think PhillyGal is right on. With a more built-out supercharger map, the need for the 85 decreases. If this were March 2016, I would definitely opt for the 70D. As it was, in March 2014 when I took delivery, the 85 was a necessity.

raffael s. | 13 avril 2015

I they did what they had to do, the S60 sales were lousy and for most people the S85 was the cheapest Tesla they might buy. Also they made some very intelligent moves:
1. They advertised the 85D wrong, so with todays stats, it is better in every way than the 70D and worth the extra 10k for little bit more range and a chunk more performance. But they did not harm their P85 sales (the rest in inventory).
2. They made the bace price higher, but made the whole car, with the most used options, cheaper.
3. The S85 is now in a submenu, and will fade over the coming weeks, this way the next gen motor + inverter will be built in high quantities. With the MX coming most of the drivetrains (except the Ps) will be the same that will maximize the output and minimize the costs.
I don't think there will be a 100kwh MS/X for another 6-9 months, at least not in production. Maybe it will be advertised at the MX launch, but they might wait for the new GF cells. These cells will not be built just in the GF, but also at the Panasonic factories, so they don't have to wait until the GF is running.

PMadFlyer | 13 avril 2015

"Why 70D?"
"Because no one would take the 69D seriously, and 71 doesn't roll of the tongue."

I'll see myself out for the day.

Brian H | 14 avril 2015

roll off