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Posts Tagged ‘Tesla Model S’

NTSB Report Largely Clears Tesla in May 2016 Fatal Crash

Joshua Brown repeatedly ignored warnings to put his hands back on the wheel.

by on Jun.20, 2017

The Tesla Model S was completely destroyed in a May 2016 crash that killed Joshua Brown.

A fatal Florida crash that took the life of a former Navy SEAL in May 2016 likely could have been prevented if the driver had responded to warnings to put his hands back on the wheel, rather than relying on the Tesla sedan’s semi-autonomous Autopilot system, according to a new report by the National Transportation Safety Board.

Joshua Brown was killed when his Tesla Model S ran into a semi-truck near Williston, Florida. The Autopilot system appeared not to have recognized the danger when the truck turned in front of Brown’s vehicle. But the NTSB said Brown should have been able to spot the problem and react. Instead, he “took no braking, steering or other actions to avoid the collision.”

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Brown had set the cruise control on his electric sedan to 74 miles per hour – while operating in a 65 mph zone—just two minutes before the crash.

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Going for Maximum Plaid: New Tesla Roadster Could Break the 2-Second Barrier

Reborn two-seater still “some years away.”

by on Jun.14, 2017

Tesla CEO Elon Musk, shown with the original battery-powered Roadster.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has made no secret about plans to bring back the brand’s original model, the Roadster. He’s also hinted for some time that there’s a performance mode in the works that would go a step beyond the current Ludicrous Mode found on both the Models S and X.

But could Maximum Plaid deliver what, not all that long ago, seemed impossible to achieve without strapping on a pair of rockets? According to at least one report, the highest-performance version of the upcoming Tesla Roadster could hit 60 mph in less than 2 seconds.

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Tesla currently is in a spitting match with Dodge, both claiming bragging rights for the world’s fastest factory-built vehicles: the Model S and the new Dodge Challenger Demon launching from 0 to 60 in about 2.3 seconds. With its high-torque electric motors, the Tesla Roadster could lay down numbers that would be difficult for an internal combustion-powered vehicle ever to beat.

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Tesla Model 3 Taking the Slow(er) Road

First specs, including performance, appear online.

by on May.30, 2017

A Tesla handout shows a pre-production Model 3.

For many owners, one of the most appealing features of the Tesla Model S is its neck-snapping acceleration – with the optional Ludicrous Mode the sedan capable of launching from 0 to 60 in around 2.8 seconds.

While the new Tesla Model 3 will nearly match the range of some versions of the bigger sedan, don’t expect to see it come close when it comes to performance. What appear to be official Tesla figures indicate the new battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, will need about 5.6 seconds to nudge 60. That’s faster than the rival Chevrolet Bolt EV, but just barely, and more in line with what some comparably-sized gas-powered vehicles can deliver.

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Early EVs were battery-powered stone ponies, barely able to get out of their own way, the little Mitsubishi MiEV, for example, needing a full 13 seconds to get to 60. That’s a key reason, industry analysts suggest, that demand for those first-generation electrics was so poor. By boosting range and performance, however, buyers finally to be sitting up and taking notice.

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Tesla Sets Q1 Production, Sales Records

Despite analysts' caution, investors continuing driving up shares.

by on Apr.03, 2017

Tesla has been launching non-traditional showrooms and displays, like this one at a Nordstrom's.

Tesla got a jump on the rest of the auto industry, reporting late Sunday that it set new production and delivery records for the first quarter of the year.

That comes as particular good news for the Silicon Valley manufacturer of electric vehicles, Tesla stretching its finances as it prepares for the launch of the all-new Model 3 sedan later this year. Sales had slumped during the final quarter of 2017 due to a mix of production snags, including the shift to a new version of the maker’s Autopilot system.

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Tesla was forced to return to Wall Street late in the January-March quarter, raising about $1.4 billion in a new stock offering. Investors responded positively, despite CEO Elon Musk’s warning that the maker’s finances were “getting very close to the edge.”

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Despite Ongoing Quality Issues, Tesla Owners Bond with Their Cars

“Owners see themselves as pioneers.”

by on Mar.21, 2017

Despite endemic quality problems, Power finds strong emotional attachment to Tesla products.

Tesla owners could be accused of having a love/hate relationship with their vehicles. The maker’s Models S and X have repeatedly been slammed for serious quality issues, yet owners retain a strong emotional bond to those battery-electric vehicles, according to a new study by J.D. Power and Associates.

But the question is whether those buying the next generation of Tesla products, starting with the Model 3 sedan set to go into production in July, will be nearly as forgiving. Moving into the mainstream carries significant risks, according to various analysts.

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“Tesla owners see themselves as pioneers who enjoy being early adopters of new technology,” said Kathleen Rizk, director of global automotive consulting at J.D. Power. “Spending $100,000 or more on a vehicle that has so many problems usually would have a dramatically negative effect on sales and brand perception. Right now, though, Tesla seems immune from such disenchanted customers.”

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Tesla Drops Base Models S 60 and 60D

Customers willing to pay for better range.

by on Mar.20, 2017

The low end of the Model S range failed to attract much interest from buyers.

Tesla hoped to win over buyers on a budget by introducing two more affordable versions of the Model S a year ago, but both the 60 and 60D battery sedans are being pulled from the line-up next month, according to the Silicon Valley automaker.

Turns out buyers are willing to come up with the extra cash to get the extra range offered by two slightly more expensive versions of the Model S, the 75 and 75D, Tesla has discovered. They offer a minimum EPA rating of 265 miles per charge.

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That fits with the general direction of the battery-car market, according to several industry analysts and insiders who spoke to TheDetroitBureau.com. Demand for shorter-range electric vehicles is largely flat-lining, while there’s growing interest in vehicles that can deliver at least 200 miles per charge.

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EV Makers Compete for “World’s Fastest” Title

Latest EV supercars top 200 mph.

by on Feb.27, 2017

The NextEV NIO EP9 delivers some impressive numbers both with and without a driver.

Battery-carmakers are intent on proving their products aren’t just short-range bricks. A number of new models are offering not only extended range but performance. Serious performance. And they’re laying conflicting claims for being the world’s fastest electric vehicles.

Among those in the hunt for that crown are Maryland-based Genovation Cars and Chinese-owned NextEV, as well as struggling start-up Faraday Future and, of course, Tesla. There’s even a new Croatian battery-carmaker hoping to gain high-speed bragging rights, Rimac Automobili.

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It’s a challenge to sort through all the claims, even when limiting one’s focus to “production” EVs, suggests Andrew Saul, CEO of Genovation Cars. “There is talk and there are results,” he said in a press release pumping the East Coast maker’s new GXE model.

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Singaporean Hypercar Takes Aim at Bugatti Performance Numbers

Flowery Dendrobium set to bloom at Geneva Motor Show.

by on Jan.18, 2017

The Vanda Dendrobium is named after a genus of orchids native to Singapore.

It looks like something Batman might drive, hails from Singapore and has the nearly unpronounceable name Dendrobium, but start-up Vanda Electrics is betting there’s a market for the new battery hypercar it’s set to debut at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show.

The concept model making its debut on March 7th will join a rapidly growing list of high-performance and exotic plug-based models that have been announced in recent months – from the all-electric Faraday Future FF91 to the hybrid-assisted Formula One hypercar under development by Mercedes-Benz.

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Vanda’s website suggests it was “set up to look into the future of electric transportation.” Until now, that has had it focusing on relatively mundane projects like a 25 mph urban delivery vehicle and an e-scooter. But while the Singapore-based company’s teaser release provides few details, it last year hinted it was working on an electric exotic that could hit 250 mph.

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Fisker Reveals Emotion EV and Possibly Game-Changing Tech Specs

Could ultracapacitor system obsolete battery technology?

by on Nov.01, 2016

The Fisker EMotion could be in production by some time later next year.

If at first you don’t succeed…if you’re Henrik Fisker, it seems, you try and try again.

Best known for the sleek and iconic Aston Martin DB9, Henrik Fisker has attempted to launch two car companies since going out on his own a decade ago, including the ill-fated Fisker Automotive, the Danish designer is about get back into the business with a new pure battery-electric vehicle that could go beyond just being a Tesla-fighter. If the newly released images and specs prove accurate, the Fisker Emotion could rewrite the rules for the zero-emissions segment.

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Beyond the car’s sleek design, the real breakthrough appears to be an alternative to the lithium-ion batteries used in most of today’s battery-based vehicles. Instead, the Emotion will use an ultracapacitor to store enough energy, the start-up claims, to run a “theoretical” 400 miles per charge.

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More Trouble for Tesla: Consumer Reports Trashes Reliability

Model X rated “sixth least reliable vehicle” in latest owner study.

by on Oct.25, 2016

Tesla's Model X has had a series of major quality problems, especially with the falcon doors.

Already facing growing concerns about quality issues with its newest electric vehicle, the Model X SUV, Tesla Motors was hammered by influential Consumer Reports magazine this week, the non-profit publication ranking the California carmaker 25th of 29 brands in its annual automotive reliability study.

It wasn’t all bad news. After faring poorly in the 2015 auto survey, CR said the Tesla Model S actually had “improved reliability.” But the newer Model X “has a long way to go,” with a variety of issues including balky falcon wing doors, locks, latches and other systems.

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The Model X is “the sixth least reliable vehicle in our survey, and there are some monumental challenges with that vehicle,” Jake Fisher, Consumer Reports’ director of automotive testing, said during an appearance before the Detroit Automotive Press Association. “It’s unclear,” he added, “whether they will get the ‘falcon wing’ doors right ever.”

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