Is this the car of the future?

In its July issue, Consumer Reports presented the results of its road test of the Tesla sedan. It scored 99 out of 100 points on its rating scale–the highest of any car tested to date. It did cite that the range was 200 miles between recharging the battery. However, the handling was top notch, and the acceleration from 0 to 60 mph was 5.6 seconds. There is no dealer network–one purchases the Tesla over the internet. If the vehicle needs service, Tesla sends a technician to the vehicle. My wife and I were discussing the Tesla over breakfast and wondering if GM or Ford may be producing a similar car in the future with less than an $89,000 price tag.

It’s a great car except for the price and lack of charging infrastructure. The price issue relates directly to the huge battery required. Until a new chemistry is developed that is much cheaper there won’t be a $30,000 Tesla equivalent. Batteries are defined by their chemistry and won’t see the price drops expected of things like computer chips.

Short answer, no!

No!! But it is important that such vehicles are now available. The automobile initially was a rich man’s plaything (horseless carriage) until the technology developed further and Henry Ford started mass production. None of these development had anything to do with anyone in Washington or any legislation. The availability of that nasty stuff called “gasoline” helped as well.

We will eventually have better and cheaper batteries, which is the only real problem holding up mass electric car production. Charging stations will be the easiest things to put up. Governments should stimulate research and development; not subsidize buyers!

I believe it was Automobile magazine that selected the Tesla type S as the “Car of the Year”. They responded to critics by simply saying that the Tesla is a luxury car you’d want to drive even if it WASN"T electric.

Tesla is clearly lightyears ahead in EVs. I wish I had the money…

I have a trailer and a boat, so not my car of the future, but the seats 5 adults plus 2 kids surprised me.

You mean instead of me going to the dealer like I did today and having a cup of coffee, I’d sit around waiting for a day or week for a guy to show up? Or how about if I’m out of state? Do I wait in a hotel for someone to show up hoping they’ll have the needed tools, parts, lift, etc. I don’t think so. A car is not like a TV and dealers can perform an important service to buyers. I think they are making a mistake trying to cut dealers out of it like an appliance. Cars are too complicated.

200 mile range would make those 1500 mile road trip vacations a real pain in the butt. and i dont get enough vaction time having to stop and charge the battery every 200 miles. ill stick with my gas guzzlers. they are paid for. i can buy an awful lot of gas for the price of one of those.

200 mile range would make those 1500 mile road trip vacations a real pain in the butt.

Not too many people take a high-end sports car on a vacation. But I agree…the 200 mile range is what kills it for me.

But as I’ve said before…it’s way too early to give up on this technology. The costs are coming down and the range is more then double what it was just 10 years ago.

Cars need fuel? Is that thinking “inside” the box? Tiny minds envision fuel? Natural gas? Hydrogen? Uh, evil polluting gases spoiling mother earths atmosphere? Elec generated by hydro plants? Gotta build the hydro plant somehow. Steel, cement, construction equipment. All the workers drove to construction site n gas hog pickups?

@Cavell Don’t confuse the building of efficient infrastructuere with the energy consumed in operating these facilities. Hydro plants have very long lives, and do not require a lot of maintenance. Niagara Falls generating stations date from just after WW I.

In case you’re interested burning hydrogen as a fuel generates H2O, which is water and non-polluting. Making the hydrogen in the first place is another matter entirely. Making hydrogen from solar electricty would be ideal. So far we have not been able to get the cost down to an affordable level.

Some of the biggest destruction of the environment is practiced in Sub Sahara Africa where the little remaining vegetation is burned as fuel by people who do not have access to electricity, propane or natural gas for cooking or lighting.

The US is blessed with an abundance and variety of energy sources. It’s up to us to use these in a frugal and responsible way.

Don't confuse the building of efficient infrastructuere with the energy consumed in operating these facilities. Hydro plants have very long lives, and do not require a lot of maintenance.

I Took the tour of the Hoover dam some years ago. The life expectancy of the dam is something like 2000 years. Sure turbines will have to be replaced along with other maintenance…but 2000 years is an awfully long time.

@Mike The Hoover and the Grand Coulee Dams should be called modern Wonders of the World. I understand they were both built during the depression and a lot was learned about mega projects. Like the Panama Canal, which really put the US on the map as world class constructors, where the French had failed miserably.

Well written Doc. Trouble is, barroom brawls have broken out over what constitues a “frugal and responsible” use of energy resources. One man’s “frugal and responsible” is another man’s “kill the bast@@@s”.

When/if they can get a reasonably priced solar panel charger for the roof on the electric cars, this could be used to extend range a bit.
How much would a Tesla go for today if they had a solar panel charger? $100k? 200k?

The roof of a car is far too small to recharge a major part of the battery. Prius has one to run a fan while parked.

Even inexpensive lead-acid batteries can’t keep the price of an EV down:

I saw an interview with the builder a few days ago, but I can’t recall what he calls the car. It must be less through him than Hammacher-Schlemmer.

I’m collecting used solar night-lights for their 600mAh, nicads. I got about 30. :-))

I guess some would prefer that we go back to the way things were in the 1700’s so we don’t use any natural resources, grow our own food, sail with wind power, and live in sod huts. But then why stop at the 1700’s when we can go back to the 700’s? But then why stop there? Maybe the dinosaurs will come back.

Straw man argument Bing. It makes sense to conserve resources, and it’s something we ought to do. It’s common sense IMHO.