19" Turbine Style Wheels With All-Weather Tires

To me the Model S exterior styling is stunning, but I'm a little "meh" on the stock 19" wheels. I'd like to collect some data in hopes that TM would eventually offer the turbine style wheels as an upgrade. I'll post the final survey tally after a few weeks. Please only respond if you're currently planning on getting the 19" wheels.

1) I like the current 19" wheel style.
2) I like the turbine style, but wouldn't pay any more for them.
3) I'd pay up to $500 extra for the turbine style.
4) I'd pay up to $1000 extra for the turbine style.
5) I'd pay up to $1500 extra for the turbine style.
6) I'd pay up to $2000 extra for the turbine style.
7) I'd pay up to $2500 extra for the turbine style.

I'm a 5. Thanks in advance for your reply.

I am a 1.

I'd love 18" or even 17", cause they are lighter. Wheels are the best to reduce weight in. They reduce rotational mass, which greatly improves handling.

I'd also love to see stainless steel or even brushed aluminium aero wheels sans any design.

1 or 2. I'm just not a rims guy, I guess.

I'd prefer a 20". :)

Start with a Tesla Ownership Experience representative, or perhaps send it straight to George B! It probably seems like a very minor thing to a California-based company, but it really is a big deal for the Northeast, upper Midwest and Canadian markets.

And it's not that we are criticizing the looks of the standard 19" is a *very* nice rim in its own right...but just that it seems somewhat less inspired than the incredible turbine style of the 21" wheel, which has become the signature (if you will) look of Model S. We simply all want to enjoy that look, available year-round on all-season tires!

Having eaten the 3500 for perf w 19", would not want to spend more than 500. Hope this becomes an option soon.

Anyone know George Blankenship's email address?

Thanks stephen.kamichi.

On page 3 of this thread, Sofie posted a link to turbine style 19" rims from a third party:

Interestingly, with tyres, a total of around $2000.00 for those 19inchers. I quite liked the two-tone rims- note that they are the same price as the silver ones.
So George, how about it? There are a large number of people wanting 19 inch and also turbine rims. Why not make these 19s an option for the sigs, and a nominal cost for the production group?

Thanks Volker. That actually seems like a nice option. I'm assuming that 2,111 krona price is per wheel, correct? That's not too bad. I wonder if I could find something like that in the US.

Also, I really hope someone else has a chance to try different tires on the 21" rims. The tire size that comes with the performance rims are 245/35R21. But what happens if you use tires that are 245/45R21? I have seen all season tires this size. I think the 45 means that the ratio between the height and the withd of the tires cross-section is 45%, so I think that would mean that the edge of the tire is a bit farther away from the rim than the 35's. Maybe it would still be okay?

No. The tires would be a full two inches larger in diameter, and the speedo would read 7% off. At least in the EU it is illegal to deviate more than 5% from the stock size.

I think Model S can recalibrate the speedometer after tire change, at least I think I read that from somewhere. I think it did it using GPS and tire rotation information. Or something.


It's the gearing and the extra stress on the motor and inverter that would be my concern, not the speedometer reading.

Stress is quite small for motor of that size. There is more than enough power-induced tolerance to handle the extra stress. I however am a bit concerned how well it will fit in the car. One inch is sometimes enough to allow tire to hit the fender if you hit a pothole. That would not be good.


But there are also gears and driveshafts. Snapping an axle isn't anyone's idea of fun.

My email to Mr. Blankenship and his response. I did my best to present a convincing case. The fact that he responded at all speaks volumes about this company. Please don't ding me for my pseudo-scientific poll - I'm just trying to make a case for a 19" turbine-style wheel with all-season tires.

Dear Mr. Blankenship,

As a Model S reservation holder, and an ardent supporter of your company and its goals, I respectfully ask that you consider adding a 19” turbine-style wheel coupled with all-season tires as an option for Model S configurations.

My forum post on the Tesla website resulted in three major findings:

1. The turbine wheel design style is a key part of the Model S brand image.
2. Many of Signature and Performance purchasers preferred all-season tires, but they “bit the bullet” for the performance tires just because of their desire for the turbine wheel styling. They are dissatisfied having to pay extra for all-season tires/wheels and having to change them twice-yearly.
3. The majority of Base Model S purchasers would pay extra to have a 19” turbine-style wheel coupled with all-season tires. It seems that an upgrade cost of $500 - $1500 would have a high adoption rate.

This results in two scenarios that both increase your profit per vehicle: Signature and Performance purchasers that select the no-cost downgrade option and its corresponding lower component costs, and Base Model S purchasers that pay a premium for a wheel that has the same component cost as the current 19” offering.

I’m not sure what your fixed cost is for a new wheel design, but assuming it’s $100,000 and you charge a $1000 upgrade premium, it only takes 100 cars to recover it. Past that you’re making an extra $1000 per vehicle where this option is selected, and my online poll indicates that it will be selected a high percentage of the time (guessing 40 – 60%). I’m not sure any of the other Model S options have this high of profit margin and potential for revenue generation.

Finally, although it’s hard to collect meaningful data from early adopters, I think you’ll find that the adoption rate of the $3500 high performance wheel/tire option will be very low by purchasers of Base Model S’s, and long term those customers are going to be the bulk of your sales. There’s just not that many people that will spend $85K or more on an automobile. However, the adoption rate of a $1000 upgrade to the 19” turbine-style wheel/all-season tire combination will be very high.

Having a 19” turbine-style wheel will reinforce and solidify the Model S brand image, increase the per-vehicle average profit, and will enhance overall brand loyalty. I respectfully urge you to consider it.

Thank you for your time,

His reply:

Thanks for the note and the suggestion. I discussed your idea at our exec staff meeting this week. It takes time to do this, but we'll see.

Have a great weekend!


"Having a 19” turbine-style wheel will reinforce and solidify the Model S brand image, increase the per-vehicle average profit, and will enhance overall brand loyalty. I respectfully urge you to consider it."

+ 1

Please George, consider it.

@Getting Amped Soon | OCTOBER 20, 2012: My email to Mr. Blankenship and his response.

I think they need to actually offer 20" wheels and tires (245/40R20). The 20" tire size is available in winter/summer/all-season. This is the best compromise I think because only 1 wheel size needs to be offered with a variety of choices for the tires.

See, for example,

That's about as polite and considerate and pertinent as it gets. Nice!

Alex K - that is a great idea! A 20" turbine-style wheel and all-season tires might give us the best of both worlds: all-weather performance and the looks and performance of the 21" wheel but with more cushion between the wheel and the road.

I think you nailed it!

+1 on the 20" turbine wheels.

I don't know about the USA, but in Australia 19 in tyres are far cheaper than 21in. Aside from that, there is no need for winter tyres. The selection for 19 in is also far greater and in particular, low rolling resistance, wet weather performance, grip and quietness would be the main considerations, in association with long tyre life. There is approx $200 PER TYRE extra in the cost of 21in high performance. 21 in tyres just don't cut it here for those reasons.
19 in turbines PLEASE.

I'm a 1 and 3, it just seems like the 19 inch rims have more benefits than the 21 inch rims

While I don't really dislike the current 19" wheels I do prefer the "turbine" style. I'd say I'm a 3 or maybe a 4.

I'm a "2"--Metal is metal; what it is shaped into can't cost that much more for the turbine style, especially when you figure the number of wheels that Tesla is dealing with. I'm sure that they could just get rid of the present 19" design, and nobody would be upset if it were to be replaced with the turbine style.

Bsimoes- +1

This could become a trademark feature like the old radiator grille on all cars in years past. See the wheels, identify it as a Tesla. Hmm what say you George?

If someone can help me with the HTML to post an image I have a Photoshopped version of a Model S with 19" turbine wheels. Thanks.

@G.A.S - upload the image to and then just cut and paste the HTML into the forum comment box. Make sure you resize the image to c. 600 px before upload because the forums don't handle large images well.

X Deutschland Site Besuchen