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Tesla Model S Video Teases Cold Weather Performance

http://vimeo.com/40038939

PUBLISHED APRIL 10, 2012

BY JEFF COBB

Tesla Motors has shown itself adept at stoking flames of passion for its pending cars, and its latest effort is a blog entry about its Model S being subjected to cold weather shake down runs.

The location was the Automotive Enviro Testing Facility in Baudette, Minn., where during the winter, 820 frozen acres and 19 potential courses let the battery electric Model S slip slide away – all within control and its low center of gravity design performing admirably, of course.

“This allowed us to fully evaluate Model S vehicle dynamics, durability, range and performance under the most extreme conditions,” write Tesla Motors in its Enthusiasts' Blog. “After days of rigorous testing, we left more confident than ever that Model S will set the standard for premium performance – no matter what's in the forecast.”

We knew inquiring minds would want to know further about the $57,400-$105,400 vehicle, so we called asking for answers to such questions as “how many days,” and “how was electric range affected?” and other related details but were told what’s in the blog is all Tesla cares to divulge.

Perhaps the cold weather testing brief was a sort of inversion on the old salesman’s adage of selling the sizzle – extreme cold is a known potential enemy to battery electric vehicles, and ice and snow can be to cars in general, so if Model S exceeded expectations, that's a good thing right? Nonetheless, we’d hoped to hear some quantifiable results aside from “we left more confident than ever.”

Alas, upon calling the communications department we were not granted further insights, but Tesla did say first deliveries begin in July and to date pre-orders exceed 8,000 units. We do know the car has captured the imagination of many, and what has been divulged thus far of its technical credentials promises much as an "awesome clean sheet of functionality."

If we learn more about Model S cold weather testing, performance and results, we'll let you know.

Um, that looked slow. Careful driver I suppose. You can drive a lot faster than that in ice/snow without losing control if you just know how to control the slide you will get. It is also possible that tires were not very good and that was fastest you could drive with them. Only place where it shows that car slides (properly) was in the "obstacle avoidance" test (green/red cones). Otherwise car looked good (very stable, no sudden moves).

I would like to see Tesla release some objective comparative data on snow performance. It is pretty easy to make any car's performance look good through careful camera angles and selective editing. Living in Colorado, I am hoping that the S will be offered with an AWD option now that is was announced for the X.


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