Nat Geo taking it's view about NYT trip and Model S

Lots of foolish generalizations, centering around 'EVs are not road trip cars'.

Well Brian, you yourself are of the opinion that only the 85kwh is a road trip car(long distance), aren't you?

I of course disagree, and I plan to make a Fremont to Las Vegas trip in my 60kwh when it arrives. Will post for you when I make it LV!

Do they not see the optics of their piece? Just look at the main sponsors of the page!


I am sure you will make it to Vegas. I get around 50 miles per charge in my Volt that is only rated at 38. The reason is in the little "green ball". GM placed a "green ball" on the display that rotates with leaves when you are using the "Juice" correctly and being "green". To keep the ball spinning you have to have very gentle acceleration or the ball will rise up and turn yellow, then red if you punch it.(Most Model S owners would make the ball turn red instantly when they punch it off the line) The ball will also drop and turn yellow then red for hard braking. SO, to maximize your range.....Accelerate SLOWLY, Use your CC all of the time at a reasonable speed (kick back and enjoy the ride), stay ahead of the airplane (I mean car) and use your brakes as little as possible. Also, try to only use the heated seats if it is cold.

Whoops they spoke too soon and now look totally foolish given CNN result of the same trip

Red Shift;
CA is a bit of a special case. CO and ID and NV and MT will be a different story. Keep a link to the KOA list; you'll need it. Often.


I don't care where I charge. I already worked out what I might compromise on and what I won't. I have kids; I live in SF Bay Area. ( why is that important? Think about that for a while). I have the best possible starting point for a road trip up to LV. How do you know Tesla wont set up their supercharges closer, especially after the NYT brouhaha? When they have more money in the future? When businesses realise the well-heeled clientele who are willing captives for up to an hour if they provide supercharging in the future?

So many things you overlook, and choose to make impulsive comments.

I do enjoy many of your posts on here btw. Not this particular one.

The business model is mostly Solar City's; covering the rare (1%) of trips which are l/d is one thing (selling array output). Subsidizing in-city travel is another. The point is to MAKE INTERCITY TRAVEL POSSIBLE (for 85 kWh cars). Not to make daily intra-city travel free, or cheap.

I never suggested intra-city travel in my travel. Whatever, this subject is boring me. Your insistence that 60kwh is just not meant to do long distance travel is slightly annoying, but then probably I will forget all about it and you, by tomorrow morning.

Good night....


It is clear that even the 85kw car has a real world range of about 175 miles, with a 30-35 mile cushion in normal driving (without letting the car dictate, like driving below the speed of traffic, having a cold cabin, etc.). I was able to go 240 mikes on one charge, but only on flat ground, no stops, max range charge, car in range mode, and never went over 55 despite faster traffic and a 65 limit for part if the distance. I had only four miles to spare at the end.

The consequences of running out of charge are far more serious in these cars than running out of fuel with an ICE, so it is not prudent to plan a trip that uses most of the available range. For me that means not going any longer than 175 miles without stopping for a charge. This is confirmed in the several blogs from people who have already done cross country and coastal trips with these cars, and agrees with the experience reported by CNN. No one with experience driving one of the 85 kw cars for extended periods would say the practical trip distance exceeds 200 miles, and I use 175 as a reasonable cushion, leaving about 15% "in the tank."

If you believe that a 60kw car will do the job for you, best of luck. But if you believe that it will reasonably and safely have a normal (not max range) trip planning distance above 125 miles, you are sadly mistaken (as I was when assuming my 85 could reliably travel the 193 miles in all weather conditions from our farm to my weekly teaching engagements in DC and Baltimore). I learned reality the hard way, and you will too.

I meant in my post not travel.


I know the real world range is likely 130. That's why I mentioned 'compromises'. And there will be compromises with my car.

To insist its not able to do long distance travel, is however, asinine. I could find a motel to charge overnight 20-30 miles earlier than an 85kwh, I would choose to stay an extra day so I am fully charged next day to go. Compromises.

However, I will enjoy the lighter weight, higher efficiency and more tossability ( those are the reasons for me choosing 60kwh, not money) of my car compared to the 85kwh.

Anyway, I probably spent more energy on this subject than I planned to.

Thanks for all your opinions.

@Brian H
The analogy to Solar City business model is one of the worst analogies possible. Solar City is a finance business model for those that CANNOT normally afford the up front capital. It is the exact opposite of the rare 1%, market. Please try to grasp the concept before offering fake expertise commentary.

So you are willing to let your car control you rather than the other way around? IMHO life is too short for the kinds of compromises (using your word) you seem to be willing to make. No car is gong to extract even one day of precious life in my world, yet you are willing to stay an extra day, sit for hours at a KOA, etc. Good for you. i don't feel sorry for you, but do empathize with any of your family members to whom you subject this car-centered lifestyle. Or do you plan to go to Vegas alone? Life should not be about compromises, especially on pleasure trips. If you think the 60kw car will handle better than an 85, you are deluded. These cars could not handle better. My 85 is far superior to my previous super cars, and every review says the low center of gravity gives these cars exceptional handling. The difference is only a few pounds, more than made up by variances in luggage and occupants. In absolute terms compared to other sedans, a 60 is a heavy pig too, but one impaired by shorter range. You appear to be rationalizing. Saving a few bucks on the major thing that makes the Model S breakthrough technology, battery range, seems short sighted to me, except for those who intend it purely for urban use. Since you insist your 60 will be used for long distance and intercity travel, your compromises say more about how you value your time than anything else. The rest is rationalization.

ken likes,

Brian isn't talking about the Solar City residential installation model. He is referencing their Supercharger business model, intended to make better city travel possible. Get a grip.


If you understand SWD and howmitmaffects the handling of the car, you would begin to understand my post.
If you feel you need to take a patronizing tone about how I choose to spend my time with my car, keep it to yourself.

How it affects. Sorry for the typo.

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