AWD Model S available early 2015, Model X all-wheel drive only

Tesla has confirmed that the Model X will be all-wheel drive only, and Elon Musk has said that an AWD Tesla Model S will be available in early 2015. Can we believe this report?

There has been rampant speculation about a P120++ (or whatever else you would like to call it) over on TMC for months now. I've tried to fuel the speculation in hopes of showing customer interest :)

The problem is that this isn't true. Elon mentioned that the AWD S might come in 2015 but the rest is in this author's head. He mentions separate motors
for each wheel and torque vectoring, which is not how Tesla does AWD.

This is someone's flawed understanding of what Elon way saying.

car t;

+1 Lola

As soon as the order tab shows up on I am preordering

P120++AWD can't come soon enough. I would love to have a true Super S wrapped in a daily driver skin.

Perfect market timing to keep the buzz going;
2015 is X
2016 is AWD S
2017 is E

Then if we are really dreaming big an Airstream trailer mounted on an S skateboard that is self powering so you can tow it with anything......Never hurts to dream big.

The model X page now only lists the Model X as having AWD.

2018 needs to be a Tesla pick-up truck--currently the best selling vehicle in the US.
YOUR Airstream will just have to wait!!

Tesla Minivan anyone?

+1 SD Supercharger. I am willing to wait for my Airsteam Trailer Tesla if I can have a pickup truck first.

I was loading 5 gallon buckets of roof coating material in my S the other day and the warehouse guy commented, "that's a pretty expensive pickup truck you are driving".

+2 @Lola & Roamer

I would jump all over an AWD 120+ Supercar. Whatever I can say on this forum, sprinkle pixie dust . . . please make this happen.

I'm hoping it will come out (at least the AWD) in 2015 concomitant with the MX. Wouldn't be surprised to see a larger battery as well.

Elon has been quoted, often, saying costs/density are improving at ~8%/yr.

40% by ME (Model E)

I don't think they need to make the AWD into a "supercar." It does not have to be crazy expnesive just because you want AWD. I'd be perfectly satisfied with a P85 AWD at a higher cost to cover the additional components.

AWD is an essential feature for a luxury performance car and I hope they don't position AWD as some exotic highly expnesive feature.

@WEB_SRFR Agreed. Any supercar talks need to start with a 1000lb weight reduction. The AWD S and X are likely for better wet road performance only.

90% of those who insist "AWD is an essential feature" have never driven an MS equipped with good snows. My SWAG.

How much is that "good snow" option costs?

Put me down for the supercar. After driving around in the snow the past winter, AWD just for "better" snow handling is not enough for me to swap out.

I emailed Tesla two days ago about the timeline of an AWD Model S and here is the two responses I got.

Thank you for contacting Tesla Motors Support in regards to the Model S. Currently we have no information on the AWD addition to the Model S. The best place for any features coming would be our website . We greatly appreciate the feedback and please feel free to reach out to us via email or 877-79-TESLA.

Kind Regards,

I don’t know if anyone has already contacted you regarding your question about an AWD Model S. I haven’t heard of any plans for one right now but that’s always subject to change. Please keep checking our web-site, it’s updated frequently and quickly so any announcements will appear there.

Thanks Mr.*****,

carlk rightly noted, "Any supercar talks need to start with a 1000lb weight reduction."

We can get close, maybe. Elon Musk says that the Generation III (Model E) vehicle will be about 80% the size of the Tesla Model S. With a reported curb weight of 4,647.3 LBS for the current car, that would make the next sedan around 3717.84 LBS.

He also said this new vehicle will target the BMW 3-Series. Interestingly enough, the proposed lower weight falls right smack dab in the middle of the weight range for those cars:

LBS     PRICE     Model
3,410   $37,300   328i Sedan
3,555   $43,400   335i Sedan
3,595   $35,300   328i xDrive Sedan
3,710   $45,400   335i xDrive Sedan
3,915   $41,450   328i xDrive Gran Turismo Hatchback
4,010   $46,850   335i xDrive Gran Turismo Hatchback

Almost, but not quite 1,000 LBS off... But it should suffice, given this competition. If an All-Wheel-Drive version of the Model E can be had for under $40,000 there will be a lot of happy people in Norway, and Aspen, and Minneapolis, and Buffalo, and Quebec...

As long as they continue to use the same skateboard for the production cars the weight and size differences will most likely rely on body and interior accoutrement changes (and eventually cell improvements).

I think re-using the main component of the S across all models is a great idea, at least as long as the models produced are fit for a car chassis. Expanding to a full size truck or larger SUV format would benefit from a new skateboard (surfboard? longboard? paddleboard?) but would incur production/R&D costs.

It'll be an exciting second half of the decade regardless.

I don't see a compeling reason for an AWD Model S. They can't build them fast enough now. Battery packs are going to get even more constrained with the Model X. They have AWD with the Model X, so if you must have it, you can buy the X. I just don't see a reason for Tesla to do it. Maybe if they were GM and selling 500,000 copies of a car per year, it would make sense to grab an extra 50,000 sales with an AWD variant, but they aren't in that position.


Aren't Signature owners first in line for an P120++ reservation?


Cap'n: Unsure about for the P120++ but they definitely are at the top of the list for the Mr. Fusion upgrade once they release the software update that unlocks the Flux Capacitor :D

The Model E is not on the same skateboard. It will be smaller, and somewhat lighter. IMO, AFAIK, IIRC.

*Bump* to fuel speculation and support for expedient P120++++ production :)

120 is something I would definitely trade up to, just the battery.

Then my Model E will become the 'driving pleasure' car.

@shop: You don't see a compelling reason for AWD with the Model S? Try the fact that over half of what Mercedes sells is sold with AWD and it is a feature desired in the market segment the Model S competes in. I'm one of those potential customers waiting for AWD.

And yes, I know the RWD Model S drives better than RWD ICE cars. My view is that an AWD Model S will drive better than an AWD Ice and I'm not the only person waiting for this to be available.

I wonder how much AWD upsells are just promotion by the dealers than fulfilling a real need. I expect they make a lot more profit on AWD cars (since they always cost more).

I'm sure some situations benefit from ICE AWD, but it seems all the MS owners who drive in ICE AWD conditions are not having a problem. This includes snow and ice.

So consider if it's worth what your asking for in the MS:
- Significantly higher cost (maybe $10-20K)
- Reduced range (due to extra weight, and power requirements)
- Less cargo space - likely the frunk would have to go

On the positive:
- Better traction
- Maybe better 0-60 times (but extra weight might negate this)
- Better stability
- Easier sell for those who are used to AWD and have never tried the MS The Mercedes 4MATIC system generally costs only about $2-4K more. It's really not a big deal. There is no reason why the Tesla AWD needs to cost much more than $5K or so. Additional weight is negligible for a 5,000 lb car.

My girlfriend has asked the same questions you are asking but I am stubborn about AWD and I want it :) I am unlikely the only person waiting for this and as good as the the Model S RWD system is, the AWD system in a Model is going to be even that much more better.

I can't emphasize enough how this feature is desirable in the high performance premium car segment. You can no longer buy a Mercedes E class or S class AMG without 4MATIC and even with the current generation E550, 4MATIC is standard. It's becoming a standard feature in this segment much the same way ABS is standard.

For some extra money and negligible weight and space loss you gain better traction and thereby safety. They just need to add AWD across their entire model line up so people who want it can pay more for it.

Higher sales price and margins sound like good reasons for AWD even if they can sell all the MS they can make already.

The reason it costs and weights more on the MS is the addition of a second motor, inverter, and likely a few other parts. I thought I read the motor inverter is $10K, but that's a retail price. The motor/inverter alone is about 300 pounds. I'd guess the other components would at another 100-200 lbs. So it means a 10% weight gain and perhaps a 5-10% range reduction. Tesla may have some tricks to reduce the range loss.

An ICE car can add AWD fairly cheaply as it only requires the transaxle as it already has a long drive train to power the rear wheels from the front motor.

AWD Teslas (at least for the Model X) will be far superior to any ICE AWD. The 2nd motor and related software can do things with traction and stability control that ICE vehicle designers can only dream about. It will be amazing, but not cheap.

@TeslaTap: I understand your reasoning but everything you mention has already been figured out by Tesla for the Model X. They also have economy of scale that you don;t get when you buy one motor at the retail price. They should be able to add AWD for about an additional $5K to be competitive with the added cost most people are used to for getting AWD.

I agree completely about an AWD Tesla being better than any AWD ICE. That's what I'm waiting for :)

@Olof: Yup but at some point they need to sell more than what they are selling now and AWD at an additional cost can only help.


I live in Canada, since 20 years I am driving Porsche 911 4S...and I enjoyed driving the 911 in winter because its 4 wheels drive.
I supposed to have a new panamera 4S in june 2014.
When I did a test drive with Model S P85 I loved the car. I canceled my contract for the new panamera 4s.
But when I did a second test drive for the P85 in winter day, there was a problems when I stopped the car in a snow hill and re-start driving....I can say that the car was not moving at all, as it was confused, I was big time disappointed..
Thanks god no car behind me. it will be a problem.
Still I love Tesla car, so I decided to go with model X because its 4X4. and I did my deposit.
I wish Tesla do model S 4x4, its a must in Canada in Winter in this way I can buy the model S 4x4 P85 (as my car) because the P85 is so sexy, wide from the back like the Porsche.
If it will be available Model S 4x4 for sure I will buy the car.
In this way I can have both model x (4x4) and model S P85 (4x4)

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