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Thursday, 26 March 2009

OFFICIAL - Tesla reveals its electric sedan, the Model S

We have just released leaked images of Tesla Model S. It is very likely that, while we were writing the text, Tesla was presenting its electric sedan in Hawthorne, California. And what a presentation it was. When it enters production, by the third quarter of 2011, it will be the only fully electric sedan in the market able to run up to 483 km. And this is only the beginning.

Model S base price would be US$ 57,400 if the North American government hadn't given electric cars a federal tax exemption of US$ 7,500. With this little help (can we say it is really little?), Model S will be available at US$ 49,900. With that price, the car will be able to run up to 258 km with a full charge of its batteries. The 483 km battery pack (8,000 of them), as well as an intermediate 370 km battery pack, are available as options.

Performance, on the other hand, comes as standard. Model S is able to reach a top speed of 193 km/h and goes from 0 to 97 km/h in 5.6 s. All this in a 4.98 m long body, with a wheelbase of 2.96 m, 1,735 kg of weight and capacity for five adults and two children in the place where a luggage compartment would be expected. What about baggage? It fits under the hood of the car. Remember: this is an electric car, so there is no need for a front engine. There is no info on where the engine is installed, but we believe it is in the rear axle. Since it counts on a single speed transmission, most of the car's room is dedicated to people, batteries and luggage.

If you manage to buy a base model by 2011 and need to travel further than 258 km, all you have to do is rent the 483 km battery pack. And what if you have to go even further? Tesla is planning to have battery changing stations in which, instead of filling up a tank, you just swap your battery pack for a fully charged one. The whole operation takes a maximum of 8 minutes, about the same time you take to fill your car tank. Or even less, depending on the size of the line...

If you don't like the idea of changing your batteries, you can charge them in a 110V, a 220V or a 440V outlet. In this last case, recharging takes only 45 minutes. In a 220V outlet, it takes about 4 hours to fully charge them.

If you hear about any 17-inch piece in this car, be sure: we are not talking about the wheels, but about the main display of the car. Model S has no buttons, only touch-screen displays. The wheels are 21-inch wide, 245/35 ZR21 front tyres and 285/30 ZR21 rear tyres. It is a pity this car will take so long to reach the roads, but Tesla is already accepting orders for it. It is a way to fund the plant it will built in California for this sedan. Tesla expects to produce 20,000 units by the end of 2011.

Source: Tesla viaAutoblogGreen

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