Tesla's commitment to developing and refining the technologies to enable self-driving capability is a core part of our mission. In October of last year we started equipping Model S with hardware to allow for the incremental introduction of self-driving technology: a forward radar, a forward-looking camera, 12 long-range ultrasonic sensors positioned to sense 16 feet around the car in every direction at all speeds, and a high-precision digitally-controlled electric assist braking system.
Last Friday at approximately 11:50 am, a Tesla safety manager received a complaint about two trespassers taking pictures at the Gigafactory. The Tesla employee requested assistance and the Storey County Sheriff’s department was alerted.
Attempting to directly correlate horsepower ratings in petroleum burning vehicles to horsepower in an electric vehicle is a difficult challenge. The physics of an electric vehicle propulsion system are very different from a gasoline one. In an EV, electrochemical reactions in the lithium ion cells create electricity. That electricity flows through power electronics that control the voltage and current, then it flows to electromagnets in the motor that create powerful magnetic fields rotating the shaft to turn the wheels. The power required to rotate this shaft has the most correlation to traditional measures of horsepower. However, the chain actually begins in the electrochemical reactions that happen in the battery pack. Depending on the battery's temperature, state of charge and age, the amount of electricity extracted can vary widely.
The Roadster 3.0 package applies what we've learned from Model S to Roadster. No new Model S battery pack or major range upgrade is expected in the near term.
On the one-year anniversary of Tesla’s Cross Country Rally, we set out to drive non-stop from San Jose to Los Angeles on a single charge in a prototype of the Roadster 3.0 upgrade.
As the Model S family has expanded over time it has become more relevant to compare range from one variant to another with a consistent set of assumptions so our customers can know what to expect and make the best decision to fit their needs. This can be a bit difficult since the background test methodology and standards from the US EPA are evolving over time. There are also many customer vehicle configuration choices, both before and after purchase, that can affect range as much as or more than the vehicle platform choice itself.
Battery technology has continued a steady improvement in recent years, as has our experience in optimizing total vehicle efficiency through Model S development. We have long been excited to apply our learning back to our first vehicle, and are thrilled to do just that with the prototype Roadster 3.0 package. It consists of three main improvement areas.
At an event in Los Angeles last year, we showcased battery swap technology to demonstrate that it's possible to replace a Model S battery in less time than it takes to fill a gas tank. This technology allows Model S owners in need of a battery charge the choice of either fast or free. The free long distance travel option is already well covered by our growing Supercharger network, which is now at 312 stations with more than 1,748 Superchargers worldwide. They allow Model S drivers to charge at 400 miles per hour. Now we're starting exploratory work on the fast option.
Lita Elbertson had never seen a lake before she decided join her friend Michael Fritts on an epic cross-country tour of the United States. In fact, the Hawaii resident hadn’t even seen a duck. Or a Model S.
There are probably more straightforward ways to make contact with a duck, but few are more fun than driving a premium electric sedan to every state in the United States. That’s what Elbertson and Fritts, a Model S owner from Upstate New York, set out to do late this summer.
There have been several articles recently implying that Tesla, through clever machinations, maneuvered Nevada into providing an overly large incentive package for the Gigafactory. I love backhanded compliments as much as the next person, but this is untrue.
Tesla’s pace of vehicle production has always been intense, but it has long been obvious that we would have to scale up quickly. Last year, we produced more than 22,000 cars; this year we’re on track to build about 35,000. By the end of 2015, we will have increased production by another 50 percent. With Model X on the horizon, Dual Motor Model S now in production, and increasing global demand, we recently decided to temporarily pause production in order to increase capacity at the Tesla Factory in Fremont, California.