2012 Tesla Model S
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  • 2012 Tesla Model S front 3/4 view

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  • 2012 Tesla Model S
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  • 2012 Tesla Model S VIN display

Spend a princely sum on a top-of-the-line Tesla Model S, which has an 85-kWh battery pack, and you can get an EPA-certified 265 miles on a full charge. If you opt for the lower-cost (and delayed) 60-kWh version, the EPA has now calculated you'll get 208 miles.

This works out to 95 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) combined, 94 in the city and 97 on the highway with the 60-kWh pack. The EPA has multiple ways of expressing this number, including: 35 kWhs to go 100 miles. Or an Annual "Fuel" Cost ("Based on 45% highway, 55% city driving, 15,000 annual miles and current fuel prices") of $650. Or that it costs $1.05 to drive 25 miles.

To compare, the 85-kWh version gets 89 MPGe (combined), 88 (city) and 90 (highway), which means the 60-kWh Model S is about six to seven percent more efficient, points out tipster Mike I. He writes that the lower mass of the smaller battery pack probably accounts for the difference, and we suspect he's right, because what else could it be? As always, your mileage may vary.

Speaking of YMMV, here's what you can do with a fully charged, 85-kWh Model S and a light foot: 423.5 miles. That's how far a father-sun duo in Florida managed to go in a Model S recently, according to Green Car Reports and congratulated by Elon Musk. Back in May, Tesla started talking about giving a prize to whoever could drive a Model S over 400 miles on a single charge. Challenge accepted and accomplished, Tesla. Now, what's the prize?


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