With a three-day loan of a Tesla Model S, the magazine's editors were given the opportunity to drive from Los Angeles to San Diego, then later do a round trip from the LA area to Las Vegas and back.
The goal was to see if the all-electric luxury sedan delivered the EPA-estimated single-charge range of 265 miles and approached Tesla's own estimates of a 300-mile single-charge range.
The results? For the 211-mile trip from the outskirts of Los Angeles to Las Vegas, the Model S was able to go the distance with a fair amount of charge to spare, and that included an elevation climb of about 4,000 feet, running part-way with the air-conditioning on and cruising at about 65 miles per hour.
For the return trip, an editor was able to make the 285-mile drive between Las Vegas and Motor Trend's El Segundo, CA, offices with three miles to spare. Whew. That said, the editor kept the A/C off for most of the ride, cruised at speeds as low as 52 miles per hour on freeways, and hit slow traffic (which helps range) near the end of the drive.
Either way, it can be argued that the Model S came up aces. Had the car had trouble, there is an electric-vehicle charging station along the way in Victorville, CA – at a Nissan dealership. See below for the nearly nine-minute video from Motor Trend.