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Skip the 40 kwH option

I understand everyone won't agree, but hear me out:

One of the key problems with electric cars is range anxiety of ICE owners. The moment they smell "out of power"-issues, many people will run for their life.

The purpose of the Model S is two-fold: to finance Tesla (make it break-even) and establish a desirable product, that people can aspire to. That is the point of starting with the luxury high-end: to create the "ideal product", which not everyone can afford, but everyone wants. Then you let the technology and price trickle down until you reach the mass market price point. If you move down in price too quickly or too low, people will instead see it as diminishing your brand. It's well-known that some luxury products sell better when prices are raised - a bit counter-intuitive, but not if you look at the real purpose of buying a luxury car.

So my case against the 40kwH is that
1) It risks creating a product that will play into the hands of consumers' range anxiety and competitors' trash-talking, by having too low a range and no super-charging. It's a bit comparable to making a slow Ferrari, or a plastic iPhone.
2) It lowers the price point of Tesla cars, diminishing brand "exclusivity". Let's face it - people don't just buy BMWs, Lexuses, Porsches etc because they're nice cars, they buy them because not everyone else drives them.
3) It probably cannibalizes on 60kwH sales - if there were no 40kwH option, most reservation holders would move up (and probably afterwards think they made the right choice) and the others would wait until finances improved or Tesla released a lower-priced model, i.e. the "GenIII".
4) It adds to production complexity.

I'm not trying to be elitist here - if there's no 40 kwH option, I won't afford a Model S. But maybe I shouldn't.

In my perspective, Tesla should launch work on making a higher-performance option in 2013, not a lower-performance. Make an absurdly over-powered 100 kwH monster and price it at a premium, or launch an updated Roadster (as long as neither stops them from working on the Model X or GenIII).

I can now say that studies show that most people are skipping the 40kwh battery pack, https://sites.google.com/site/clprenzsurvey/
120+ responses in less than 24 hours. Check out my thread for the numbers. Only 7% of people are getting the 40kwh pack

I've cancelled because the 40kWh is available in Europe... :-(

120 out of 20,000 is not a very accurate survey but it does look like less than 10% so the 40 looks like an option that will get dropped.

If they want to drop the 40kWh and change me to the 60kWh (with my price grandfathered in) I’ll add the 2K for supercharging. Sounds like a nice deal. :)

PS: I’m glad I create my post in Word, because half the time it blows up on submit!

Chuck;
install the Lazarus add-on, and no post is ever lost.

Ad vdM;
Do you mean NOT available? ;)

If you will not use the 60 because you are in the city, you will get little to no utility from it. So the only reason to buy the larger pack is for resale. That approach is not likely to give you a return on your additional investment. In my view, the only reason to buy the larger packs is for their utility to you as the buyer in terms of range and performance.

+1 @jshelton

+100 @Chuck Lusin!!

Thanks ChasF!

Suggestion. Set the trip odometer of your current car. Check the current miles you drive right now for week, maybe even a month. If any day you exceed a 100- 120 mile range in one day, the Tesla 40kWh is not for you. I checked my miles for a week and they were 140. I would have 100-120 miles of driving range dailey waiting each morning after a nightime charge. If we need to take a longer trip we simply use our paid for Avalon on that trip. 10k miles a year saves $3000+ in gas cost vs my current 2003 Ford F-150 I drive to and from work. If I have a lunch meeting its within my range. When we go out for dinner with friends our Tesla S 40kWh model is still a head turner - afterall its still the car of the year. Golf? Local shopping? Groceries? Movie? etc... The best part is were not wasting money on something we would seldom need. If the Tesla S price was $10k more for something that doesn't work for me. I'm out.

Chuck;
The $2K option works for the 60 only at time of original manufacture. You'd have to rip the car apart and install heavier wiring, for starters. If you upgrade a 40kWh battery, you will get more power but NEVER Supercharging. Same for a 60kWh built without the factory hardware installed.


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