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Finally meet Model S

I finally saw the Model S last week(that was 3 weeks ago; I had problem posting). The door handles were disable. When I pushed on the handles, they felt flimsy. I was not too thrill about the popout handles(I rather like the handles rotate into the doors; body color instead of chrome). The interior of car does not feel as luxurious as cars in this price range; it is more like cars in the $35000 range. As for the flashy now high tech 17" screen, most people will miss the dials & buttons(I am a technut, but I still prefer the dials & buttons which I can control without taking my eyes off the road). Unless it has voice control otherwise people will have tough time adjusting AC heating or maybe radio. The brochure I picked up was either not informative or outdated. It does not have complete details and features.

I simply must quote cosmomusic from the 'private' marked thread re: test drives here. I talked with Cosmo before his drive (I'd finished mine and was taking pictures of the cars). He told me he drives a Lexus... I didn't make note of it, but he might've said Lexus LS.

Today I went to Heaven and am alive to talk about it. Never in my wildest dream could I have imagined that any ground transportation could be so awesome in it's performance and beauty. I have driven all the usual suspects and this was an out of body experience driving Model S.

The car responds immediately to acceleration, the low center of gravity gives a sense of connection to the road, with the exhileration of flight. The Model S drives around corners without any sense of anxiety or trepidation at speed of up to 70 MPH. The car seems to know where the road leads with the simple touch of the steering wheel, which feels to me like a long time friend. Model S can be driven just with the accelerator, brakes is purely optional - an amazing experience.

The only concern I had, is how long do I have to wait for mine?

I drove one of the Performance models. The drive is amazing. The interior is sufficient for the level, I think. It is nicer than any car I've ever owned or been in, but that isn't a really high bar. I found the driver seat very comfortable with plenty of adjustments.

I don't drive a Lexus, but Cosmo does and he didn't mention the interior being inferior.

Glad to hear that people are saying good things about the test drive. My point is that it is probably not fair to compare the comfort to a much larger car and the LS is pretty darn big.

The seats are comfortable, I can say that with certainty. There is plenty of room, although headroom in the back may be a problem for taller folks. The drive characteristics are what you make of them; if you drive sporty, you get sporty. If you drive sedately, you get that too.

You don't get a half dozen storage bins for random things. You don't get a smoker's car either. The beverage holders are oddly placed and there aren't map pockets behind the seats or in the doors.

The lack of interior storage features is something they are working on, but isn't here yet. If you decide to pass on your Signature reservation you may still want to delay for a car delivered sometime next year. A version 2.0 or so with the interior features you want.

If at all possible, if you can delay your final decision for a week or two, you might want to do that. The new interior designs should have some pictures and discussions very soon, from what I can tell from the Blog entries.

My point is that it is probably not fair to compare the comfort to a much larger car and the LS is pretty darn big.

Overall Length: 203.9 in / 196.0 in
Width: 73.8 in / 77.3 in
Height: 58.1 in / 56.5 in
Wheelbase: 121.7 in / 116.5 in
Headroom front: 38.0 in / 38.8 in(!)
Headromm rear: 37.9 in / 35.3 in(!)
Trunk Capacity: 18.0 cu ft / 31.6 cu ft(!)

Now, which is the Lexus LS and with is the Tesla Model S? ;-)

Yes, the LS has larger outer dimensions and in particular the rear headroom in the Model S has been compromised in favor of an aerodynamic exterior, see other thread. Other than that, the Model S isn't smallish by any means, it seams to play in pretty much the same league as the LS.

BTW, the extents of the Model S have been discussed in some detail here:

Here is the thread that discusses the Model S' rear headroom:

@Jason and Volker
Thanks for the additional info.
I do still plan to test drive. And I don't mean to say it is not comfortable - but again IMHO it is not as comfortable as an LS or similar Jaguar or Porsche Panamera. 100K buys a lot of car :)

Where as those cars have everything sort of filled in around the driver... the model s just didn't feel that way to me. Rather it looked and felt like a few things were put it the car to finish it. As others have said though - the minor changes b/t Beta and production may make a difference here.

I looked up the Porsche Panamera and it starts at $111,000. More than a fully loaded Model S performance. I would hope that car was better.

The Jaguar XKR-S with slightly better 0-60 starts at $132,000. Again I certainly hope it is more car at that price. It cost a lot more than the Model S performance fully loaded.
The XKR which is a little slower in the 0-60 than the Model S performance and is about $98k.
The XJL starts at a little over 80K and goes all the way up to 150K.

More expensive cars will have more features I am sure. Tesla will get there and one day have cars with all the features of those cars you mentioned. Tesla is trying to be the best car in it's class. I'd say they have done a great job for their first Sedan. Things can only get better.

In the latest version of "the best car" quote by Elon, there was a qualifier I hadn't heard before, something like, "in all the important dimensions, all the ways that matter." I think performance, safety, capacity, and such were specified.

@sudre_ Not sure how you get 111... but to be sure options off both those cars (jag and porsche) can get expensive. Anyway the Panamera with everything I want (including the highest cost premium package) is more like 90K so probably 100K with tax etc... My Sig prequote is 111K (which is basically a regular signature model with the Panoramic roof). All of that to say - IMHO it is a fair comparison in this sense.

On those cars, don't forget the Model S ROI savings in both gas and service costs!


sorry to be a pess service cost is not known. Here is what happen to me when I went green two years ago. I bought the Ariens AMP electric mower for $1999; last summer, I couldn't start; batteries were replaced under warrantee; three month ago, the cutting deck stops after 5-10 seconds. replaced batteries again it cost me $1160. Ariens just ignored my emails.

all that said if I have the money I would still go for a model S.

Battery has a very good warranty. Other parts...well ICE car has all those too + that ICE and complex transmission. On average any BEV will have a lot less to fix or maintain than any ICE, so service costs should be quite a bit smaller. BEV doesn't even have oils to change.

I wonder though how much it would cost to replace that touchscreen. It is major "single point of failure", and it can't be very cheap (relatively speaking). What kind of warranty it gets? Does anybody know?


If you claim you are buying a Sig performance (design studio cost fully loaded $101,550) then you are looking at the wrong Panamera. There are NO Panameras that I can find with a 0-60 of 4.4 that cost that little. You need to compare apples to apples. Start by dropping the Signature pricing altogether because that is mainly (as discussed at great length) for early delivery and badging. How much does it cost to get your Panamera earlier than the guy that ordered one 2 years before you?

Panamera base car 75K with 0-60 of 6sec
Model S 60KW fully 70K with 0-60 of 5.9sec (minus rear seats)

Panamera S base car 91K with 0-60 of 5.2
Model S Per fully loaded 93K 0-60 of 4.4 (minus rear seats)

Panamera 4 base car 80K with 0-60 of 5.8sec
Model S 85KW fully loaded 90K 0-60 of 5.6 (minus rear seats)

Panamera 4S base car 96K with 0-60 of 4.8sec
Model S Perf fully loaded 93K 0-60 of 4.4 (minus rear seats)

So I repeat all the Panameras cost more except the Panamera S version but the 0-60 is much slower than the comparable Model S.
If you don't want to spend more money on the Model S for badging then don't. But don't compare the Signature to a non signature Panamera.

I choose the base priced 111K Panamera GTS because it was the only one with similar HP and performance to your Model S Performance Signature. That is without taxes and fees on all cars.

If you can make a better Apples to Apples comparison go for it.

I had a sig reservation and opted for the regular (not performance) Model S - I got my prequote @ 107 / 99 BEFORE tax and the ONLY option I got was the panoramic roof. Did you get your Tesla quote yet?

I am comparing that to a regular (i.e. V6 panamera). That said... the Model S is still technically 1-2 tenth of a second faster.

You start buying the turbo and you are definitely spending some serious cash. Though the 4 only adds like 2-3 grand.

I have no idea how much it cost to buy it early. I am looking NOW :) But I take your point

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