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Would anyone choose Tesla S 115kw or 170kw battery if it was available?

Would anyone choose Tesla S 115kw or 170kw battery if it was available?

I am hoping that Tesla comes out with a larger battery pack soon.
I would defiantly go with a larger pack and that would obviously include a lot more range.
I opted for the 85D and since driving it for the last 3 weeks I have put on 5000km
During the next 5 months I expect to drive between 400km to 500km per day.
I estimate I'll be driving 75,000km or (46,875miles) a year. I Mostly use it for business deliveries.
I have never leased a similar vehicle that is even remotely close to the price of the Model S
but I hope I can write off a huge portion of the lease payments come 2016 income tax time.
The problem I am going to have is finding charging stations come summer time when I need
to travel over 375km in one trip. I drive all along the hiway around Vancouver
British Columbia and the only superchargers are approximately 1.5hrs away from Vancouver to the
north (Squamish) or to the east (Hope). I opted for the ChaDeMo adapter and I noticed there are a couple
of DC Fast charging stations around, so that should help in the mean time until Tesla decides to build
a supercharger station directly in Vancouver or at least within a 30 min drive from Vancouver.

vpoz | 29 april 2015

I'd go for a significantly bigger battery pack too.. Likely to be doing a fair bit of driving around Scotland in winter and at high speed on German autobahns in the next few years.

mclary | 29 april 2015

NO!

michelcolman | 30 april 2015

I still haven't bought one because 85 is not enough for my commute from Antwerp to Paris at European highway speeds. 115 would just about do it, if it indeed corresponded to 35% more range (which it probably wouldn't due to added weight). I would need to make some quick calculations, since I like to drive a fair bit above the speed limit, but I would probably go for it and even accept a slightly lower cruising speed.

If they brought out a 170, I would break the land speed record for people running to a computer to order a car. Wouldn't even check the price until after ordering.

Anthony J. Parisio | 30 april 2015

I would buy a larger battery pack depending on how much it cost.

LegalCounsel | 30 april 2015

Yes I would, but the price would be a main consideration.

ParklandFLMike | 30 april 2015

No.

Last time I drove more that 300 miles in 1 day was 15 years ago.

LostInPA | 30 april 2015

I would prefer improved battery efficiency and shorter recharge times.

Tstolz | 30 april 2015

For the number of times I drive over 400 km in a day I'd rather have more Superchargers ... which of course are being installed daily. That said, I wouldn't turn it down if it was offered at the same price.

chengchy | 30 april 2015

I would definitely opt for one. One reason: convenience. And for that reason, I back out my order of an 85D

bp1000 | 30 april 2015

@LostInPA agree with this

Quicker re-charge times, less weight in the car, better battery efficiency.

200-250 miles per charge suits me. I don't need more, more means more weight and longer time to recharge.

I'd rather they put more superchargers in and make them quicker.

tmaz | 30 april 2015

Absolutely I would upgrade for more range. Two reasons based on my most recent trip from CT to FL. It will reduce the number of stops I needed to make from 10 to probably 6 and my recharge times will be faster given a supercharger charges the first 60-70% at over 300miles per hour and then starts to taper off as low as 120 miles per hour. If I can save an extra 2 hrs each way on that road trip the larger battery is totally worth it

proven | 30 april 2015

My first reaction is that 115 would be nice. However, the more I think about it, I just want more superchargers since the 85 is more than enough range 99.5% of the time.

Bighorn | 30 april 2015

If it were offered, it's not that defiant to order one. It's what they're hoping you'd do. I think the weight would compromise the handling though.

longlakeis | 30 april 2015

I have a P85D. I will buy more hp, refinements and range when they come out. Great car but more is better right?

chengchy | 30 april 2015

@tmaz +1, and your experience is a perfect example of convenience which Model S is still lack of. I would put a reasonable priced 115KWH option before AWD, TACC and performance which are nice to have but not necessary. Oh, BTW, I rented a Model S the other day from a local car renter. 85KWH was barely enough and caused quite some trouble while cruising at 115KM/H on highway 401. Whereas 170KWH is nice, I would be satisfied if the car can cruise at 120Km/H for 4 hours straight under normal condition giving it a real world 300 miles of highway range.

WØQR | 30 april 2015

Just because you increase the KWH capacity does NOT mean you get a concomitant increase in range! This is difficult for some to understand but with the current technology going to a higher KWH capacity would mean a much lower mileage per KWH. The factor is WEIGHT. The more KWH capacity the high the weight. And there is some point that the weight will totally overwhelm the KWH mileage capability and you'll only go one MILE. So you can't (again with current technology) keep increasing KWH capacity and increasing range. The physics just doesn't allow it.

Couple this with recharge times and the upfront cost and it doesn't make any sense.

Wait for future developments in storage. i.e., higher density.

minervo.florida | 30 april 2015

Not for us, and we have 2 Model S's

LizzieG | 30 april 2015

I'd turn this argument upside down by saying that they are likely loosing sales because the current Model S is limited to only about 250 mile and if you drive at highway speeds the range is even less. Just about every premium German car we've owned has offered us about 400 mile of range with about a 25 gallon gas tank and this is what this particular market segment is used to.

Sooner or later Tesla will need to roll out about a 350 mile range battery and we'd love that because as it is the East Coast has poor super charger coverage away from I-95.

Bighorn | 30 april 2015

I'm glad STEM is getting more emphasis these days.

evaandmarty | 30 april 2015

More battery....maybe
More superchargers....definately

negarholger | 30 april 2015

More battery = more superchargers.

Add 100 miles and you only need to stop at every second SC effectively doubling the number of superchargers.

There is a reason why gasoline cars all have around 350 miles range as it would be easy to add another 5-10 gallons to the tank... that is the sweet spot.

Ultimately Tesla will have a MS version with 350+ EPA rating as it opens more market for cold weather or high speed areas. But not by increasing the weight, but improvements in battery technology - I expect that to happen just before the M3 production start.

Son of a Gunn | 30 april 2015

Does it add weight? Does it take more space?
Gravimetric, volumetric
Miracle is when energy density gets better without compromising both.

Bubba2000 | 30 april 2015

I would love to trade my P85 for a P120+D for higher. The extra battery would mean, I would I could drive at higher speed without worrying about range or AC/Heating load. Would like nicer interior, especially the seats, including the back seats. Of course, the car is heavy enough, so the weight has to stay the same or less. Plus with a larger battery, I am going to be able to charger faster than I can do now. What takes me 20 minutes could be cut down to 12-15 min going from near empty charge.

If I am going to pay $120k for P85D, another $20k is ok, but Tesla has to refine the car to make it a good value.

tmaz | 30 april 2015

@Bubba2000 +1. Totally agree.

Bighorn | 30 april 2015

Y'all have changed my mind--I'll take twice the battery if it doesn't weigh more, take up any extra space or add to the cost. It's a win-win-win.

cpmarino | 30 april 2015

Key is the development of batteries/technology that provides increased capacity without increased weight, then you have the best of both worlds. Not possible currently, but it will happen.

Agree the sweet spot is 350 in range, and they'll get there.

What I don't understand is that a larger battery takes longer to charge ... yes, of course, from 0% to 100%, but on a daily basis, you would be recharging the same amount that you are today, no? Increased capacity doesn't mean you would be driving more miles than you normally do.

bt456 | 30 april 2015

300 miles range at 85 mph with hills, wind, rain, and cold, or hot, A/C, Heat. Any more would be a waste of mass. And if the US SC could get 150kw charging, that would be nice too. However, there will be no shortages of SC in the future.

Grinnin'.VA | 30 april 2015

@ W0QR | April 30, 2015

... with the current technology going to a higher KWH capacity would mean a much lower mileage per KWH.

Tesla has said that the current MS85 cars carrying more weight require only a little more energy per mile than while carrying less weight. So I think you're incorrect.

Couple this with recharge times and the upfront cost and it doesn't make any sense.
Wait for future developments in storage. i.e., higher density.

Elon and JBS have repeatedly reported that Tesla has an active battery development program that has been improving the energy density of its battery technology by roughly 7% per year. Also, the current MS batteries are based on Tesla/Panasonic battery technology as it existed in about 2010. Since then, they have already had 5 years developing bettery battery technology. I'd guess that Tesla could deliver higher-capacity battery packs in volume about 2 years after they decide to do so. If they decided to do that now, I believe that they could deliver 105-115 kWh MS batteries, priced at about $20K-$25K by the summer of 2017.

Of course, the hypothetical higher-capacity batteries would include the best available battery technology at the time Tesla decides to get read to start making them. Otherwise, such improved batteries would not fit in the MS.

For the record,

1. I want a higher-capacity battery pack to replace the battery pack in my 85D as soon as Tesla can routinely deliver them. I suspect that Tesla could deliver a 115 kWh battery pack for the current MS cars as soon as 2017. My understanding is that Elon has said that other priorities will delay the availability of such battery packs for MS cars by at least a couple of years.

2. With regard to your statement "it doesn't make any sense ...": Different things make sense to different people. You speak for you, but definitely not for me. I view this issue differently; higher-capacity MS batteries make very good sense to me. The sooner, the better. YMMV.

Nantang | 30 april 2015

I drive a lot. Sometimes I've had three hour commutes. And, there are places I've worked and am still credentialed to work that are not on the supercharger network routes, and my wife does not want me borrowing her SUV for these kind of long trips if it can be avoided. To that end, a 300 to 400 mile range would be helpful, especially if the destination's only recharge option is an ordinary 110V trickle outlet that would give me 60 miles towards the return trip.

KL | 30 april 2015

I would not. I would like 300 rated miles compared to 270 now in my S85D. I would pay in dollars, but not in weight ... the car is heavy enough as is and I don't want to add to further degradation in handling or tire wear because of mass. So maybe a 90kWh battery with some efficiency gains and we are there.

Realistically, more superchargers solves the problem better than more battery.

- K

Ddowns2050 | 30 april 2015

Yes I would buy. There are many trips I can't make because there are no chargers. Unless you want to sit at a RV park for 8 hours. I don't necessarily want to drive 500 miles in one stretch, but I do want to be able to get back home if no chargers are available and there isn't any available in many many places.

Boukman | 30 april 2015

Though I am not as sure about a 170Kwh battery, I am pretty sure a 115 is not too far in the future. I do not agree with EM about any range over 300 mikes is excess baggage... at least not when the published range of the MS requires "ideal" conditions ( AC/Heater off, no gradient, no head wind, no rain, etc ...) to be achieved. With the advances in battery development, it's only a matter of time for a battery with double or triple the capacity of the MS current battery to show up on the market. And that capacity will not only come with a lower price and weight but also probably longer life as well. Then, one of the choices that will show up when buying a Tesla will be more battery sizes...

Grinnin'.VA | 30 april 2015

@ KL | April 30, 2015

I would not.

Realistically, more superchargers solves the problem better than more battery.

1. You are entitled to your preference. Mine is the opposite of yours.

2. IMO, for the next few years, many MS owners will want to drive their cars to places that are off the SC grid. Consequently, increased range brings benefits that building more SCs along major highways doesn't.

Keep in mind that the real-world range of the MS is substantially less than the rated range when circumstances aren't ideal. Like driving fast, or uphill, or in cold weather, or into a headwind. IMO, for MS drivers in the winter in the mountains, the 85 kWh battery pack is marginally satisfactory for long road trips.

tmaz | 30 april 2015

Completely agree. An ideal battery for me is one that gets me 300 miles of range in less than ideal conditions (e.g., cold, rainy weather, with a headwind and a speed of at least 70 mph). If I can get that I'm happy. Giving me a rated range of 270 (240 at recommended 90% charge) does didly squat for me if its almost never obtainable. In february, I had days where I only achieved 170 miles of actual range at a 90% charge.

dlake | 30 april 2015

A bigger battery (greater energy density) should mean shorter recharge times- at least to 80%

I am waiting to order a second MS or MX until a battery is available that provides more range for long distance driving at 75-80 mph.

Iowa92x | 30 april 2015

Your battery would weigh approximately 2,400 lbs, so nope. Pig handling no fun.

Bubba2000 | 30 april 2015

My understanding is that Tesla uses cells with 3.1 W-hr capacity from Panasonic using the NAC, electrodes, proprietary polymer membranes, etc. The electronics are at the sub-pack level instead in each battery. Saves on cost and increases capacity. These are automotive grade batteries.

Panasonic has been selling a 4.0 W-hr battery for general use for a few years. Not sure what is the extended performance record. Do they retain most their capacity over the years? Automobile grade?

Based on the trend, battery energy density should be 40% by now based on 7% annual improvement. Except this tech is not linear, goes into steps. JB is saying only 15% improvement in energy density. Sounds too conservative.

Jolinar | 30 april 2015

We already have 310kW in our P85, no thank for 115kW nor 170kW...

chengchy | 30 april 2015

@jolinar. Are you kidding or just can not tell the difference between power and energy?

I myself would like to see 300 miles real world highway range as I stated before. Larger battery means longer pack life, faster charging and more convenience

Nantang | 30 april 2015

Good point about the added weight. I should say that I'd trade in some performance in favor of range, but that wouldn't be true, since my forthcoming car will be a P85D, giving up about 15 miles in favor of insanity.

tndcosta | 30 april 2015

Perhaps we are only in the very early stage of battery development. Just as computers were very large and bulky in the 1980's, same goes for television sets before the sales of LCD, LED and plasma. Also the cost was pretty high for them Initally. Now as more people bought those electronics and the demand got higher we have seen a price drop with better design and efficiency also with less weight. I am hoping that the Gigifactory plus more people buying electric vehicles will be the answer to this problem. For now I think with the current battery technology that is being used a Tesla S with 115kw battery would get 300 miles of range using normal everyday driving conditions.

Tstolz | 30 april 2015

People seem to be having trouble with this question since the number of Superchargers is a moving target. Given the network today ... I'd want much more range .. Given Superchargers everywhere ... soon .. I'm good with my 85. Charging from home is awesome and fulfills all but 5% of my needs.

Range and Superchargers are only needed for long distance driving. Since you plug EVs in at home and charge overnight you really don't need the equivalent range of an ICE. Superchargers are the 'must have' for the EV revolution .. extra range is just a 'nice to have'.

chengchy | 30 april 2015

Just watched the latest video from Bjorn, he said clearly he would like a 110 or even bigger battery. His problem is they were not hungry while the car was hungry

dlake | 30 april 2015

JB Straubel stated that batteries improve "7-8% per year." Where does this statistic come from? Using the same general design and chemistry, can you really get 7% improvement year after year? If we are using 2010 battery chemistry, should new batteries really be 28-35% "better?"

From my thinking, an improvement is more energy density that doesn't add weight. Surely one can't do this using the same chemistry and form factor forever.

Thoughts?

sule | 30 april 2015

85 kWh is awesome, but more would be welcome for us living in cold climates and/or doing long roundtrip commutes *between* superchargers while liking to drive a bit faster. I do times 140km (87mi) twice in a day (there and back) with limited or no charging at destination. At -27C (-17F) a lot of energy goes to keeping me warm. I have to drive normally :) and after the trip there isn't much energy left in winter...

So, yes, I'd take more.

With sufficient and fast superchargers if the car can beat my kids' tummies' range that is good enough for me. Others will want a car that can drive them "till they drop" in their marathon trips...

Brian H | 30 april 2015

dlake;
He gets it from a graph showing a series of larger step-changes with a slope of about that overall. No telling when each step will occur, tho.

Pungoteague_Dave | 30 april 2015

Yup, I'd buy it, but only if there isn't a major weight and efficiency trade-off. I would love to have 500-mile real world range, but then I have finished an Iron Butt Rally (2011), riding a motorcycle 11,000 miles in 11 days. My wife would disagree, as she makes me promise limited and specific distance targets every time we embark, whether biking, hiking, or driving. As a long distance motorcycle rider, one learns to regulate fluid intake to accommodate 600-mile segments, something no one else in my family has mastered. 8-p

dlake | 30 april 2015

I hope every chemistry dept in the world has labs working on electrochemistry that will translate into batteries with a higher energy density : weight ratio than we have now.

A 400-500 mile per charge BEV will be the tipping point.

Dr. Bob Reinke | 30 april 2015

YES...Price no concern. More range important.

jf1689 | 30 april 2015

I will buy the 170 KW one.

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