Model X performance... is Elon going nuts?

Model X performance... is Elon going nuts?

“Even though the X is heavier [than the Model S], it will still go zero to 60 miles an hour in about 4.4 seconds,” Mr. Musk said. “And that’s not even the Performance model.”

With that, and the falcon doors, my guts say that Tesla is targeting an extremely focused (read: small) market. Great vehicle for Tesla to show off, but will it contribute to the bottom line?

I have always defended Tesla's strategy in these forums, and I strongly believe in the "Secret Tesla Master Plan", but with this vehicle I can't help the thought: Are they slowing going off rails...? To me, the Model X doesn't fit the bill of the Secret Tesla Master plan. At least that's my preliminary first impression.

Full disclosure: My perspective is from Germany. I may not fully understand the American passenger car market. But does Tesla?

Brian H | 24 gennaio 2013

There are likely to be a few "variants" on the S platform, too: the cabriolet, pickup, van, etc. Maybe announced soon, per Elon.

The beauty of the robotized line is that all can be produced together on it.

GoTeslaChicago | 24 gennaio 2013

SMahindra21 >>> "...Why prolong the Gen III with the X?"

I think a major under appreciated factor affecting the timing of the Gen III is the battery cost. If the Gen III were completely designed and ready for production now it would flop. Why? Because the cost of the battery is currently too high to make an affordable AND desirable electric car. We need 3-4 more years of 8% per annum battery improvement/cost decline to make the Gen III possible.

Therefore the extra volume & profits of the Model X will help make the Gen III both possible and successful.

More profits equals more money available for Gen III R & D.

More volume (Model X combined with Model S) equals economies of scale necessary to drive battery & battery pack production costs down.

Benz | 31 gennaio 2013

@ GoTeslaChicago
I agree with you on this. Because the most important (and decisive) part of an EV is the battery pack, which has to be able to store enough electricity to make a more than reasonable range possible, and which does not cost too much. Therefore, in order to be successful, it would be wise not to introduce the "Tesla GEN III car" too soon. Be patient and focus on the production of Model S, Model X, and other variants (i.e. station wagon, coupe, cabriolet) on this platform/skateboard.

Superliner | 17 febbraio 2013

IMHO Too much emphasis is being placed on performance 0 to 60 times etc. When reading in these forums and elsewhere the buying public seems to be much more focused on RANGE! including myself.

If the performance is comparable to other ICE vehicles in the Model X class of close competitors, range becomes king.

If I want 0-60 I could drive a top fuel dragster Blows the doors off anything on the road 0-60 but it only has less than a half mile range, which is not very useful.

For my $$ I'd rather pay a premium for RANGE!! Best in class range is WAY more useful to a BEV driver than face stretching performance.

Timo | 17 febbraio 2013

Power is side-effect of having big battery, so you get both without any penalty to either.

Benz | 18 febbraio 2013

@ Timo

Yes, because EV's automatically have instant torque, which is a great advantage.

Timo | 18 febbraio 2013

Power being instantaneous has nothing to do with this.

Let me explain:

lets say you can drain one battery in half a hour giving it 2C rate.

Two batteries in parallel you can drain twice as much current without dropping voltage and without draining individual battery any faster than 2C, so you just doubled your power without causing any additional strain on batteries. It still takes half a hour to drain the battery, but you get twice the output.

Which means: Double the energy capacity = double the power capacity.

This leads to big battery = a lot of power pretty much automatically. People talk about power density just because of this relation.

Brian H | 19 febbraio 2013

Many anodes make light work.

Timo | 19 febbraio 2013

I have to add here that "big" in this case means physically big. When battery chemistries change you might get upgrade to energy density without upgrade to power density which can cause problems if the battery size (physical) gets downgraded to keep capacity same.

This is problem with Li-Air -batteries, they don't have very high power densities, which means you need physically big battery to get power to move the car and get charge fast enough that you don't die to old age before you have charged enough to drive one day. Consequently you have battery that could go coast to coast (US) in one charge (and then take month to charge it back to full).

OTOH for traditional Li-Ion -batteries some lab results give absolutely insane C-rates, biggest I have seen was something in order of 10000C (meaning you can drain battery in about 1/3 of a second).