Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S

  • tesla model s
  • tesla model s

  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S

  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S

  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S

  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S

  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S

  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S

  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model S

  • Image Credit: Tesla Motors
  • Image Credit: Tesla Motors
  • Image Credit: Tesla Motors
  • Image Credit: Tesla Motors
  • Image Credit: Tesla Motors
The L Word is not just a Showtime series that went off the air a few years back. It can also be code for "luxury," a term the folks at Tesla Motors don't seem to overuse when it comes to the Model S battery-electric vehicle. The California-based company considers its sole production model a performance vehicle, Automotive News says, citing a statement by Diarmuid O'Connell, Tesla's vice president of business development, at a presentation to the Electrification Coalition. O'Connell said the Model S is "competing based on performance" and the official company line reinforces this view. The review quotes that Tesla currently highlights on its main page all talk about the car's performance and do not use the word luxury at all. On the Model S page, the tag line is: "Introducing a car so advanced it sets a new standard for premium performance."

The Electrification Coalition recently highlighted the Model S's success by pitting its 2013 sales numbers favorably against other luxury models like the Mercedes-Benz S Class and the BMW 7 Series, though those numbers are estimates because Tesla doesn't release monthly sales figures. But the company did say it sold about 4,900 units during the first quarter, when it earned its first-ever quarterly profit. The next batch of sales numbers, covering the second quarter of 2013, will be released August 7.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 22 Comments
      Technoir
      • 1 Year Ago
      Gasoline creates lots of gases that need to be vented to avoid pressure building up, especially in hot climates. If you let it sit, you will see the level drop each day.
      CoolWaters
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is a smart car for the well off to buy. During Hurricane Sandy, you could not get gas. A gas and electric car in the house hold is a smart idea.
        Dave
        • 1 Year Ago
        @CoolWaters
        For a lot less money, you could buy a 55 gallon drum of gasoline and a hand pump. The idea that BEVs have an advantage in a hurricane is, at best, silly.
        cd
        • 1 Year Ago
        @CoolWaters
        Because? Water and Electricty go so well together?
      throwback
      • 1 Year Ago
      So true, as losing power is a common occurrence during hurricanes.
      Electron
      • 1 Year Ago
      Guess for now the luxury is in the style and performance of the vehicle, the interior space and the ride it offers but not so much in the sort of refined interiors and bible sized option lists the likes of Audi and Mercedes can offer. I'm sure that with increasing supplier confidence that will change though.
        purrpullberra
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Electron
        So you think Tesla want/ed to build out the interior but just couldn't source the product due to quality or time frame issues? I don't think I've ever heard that idea before. That could be what happened. However I and others hope it all remains up to the customer so a huge options list works for me, but I want a wide-open floor plan to do with what I please.
          Letstakeawalk
          • 1 Year Ago
          @purrpullberra
          It certainly wasn't due to a lack of time - the Model S had effectively a six-year gestation period.
      Mark Schaffer
      • 1 Year Ago
      Yes...what could go wrong with storing a 55 gallon drum of gasoline on your property during a hurricane? Why nothing.
      brotherkenny4
      • 1 Year Ago
      People ride without physical effort in a climate controlled chamber and listen to any music they like while drinking coffee or soda. It sounds to me like every vehicle is a luxury vehicle. The price paid to visually differentiate ones self from the rabble seems hardly worth it. In fact it seems rather childish and stupid. How little true capability and worthiness do people need to have, to justify supplimenting their self worth with over priced "built to fail" possessions. It's rather sad actually. The tesla model S is not a luxury car but rather an alternative drive system that will have broader social benefits if we support it's production. On the other hand, it probably also kicks arse in acceleration. I don't know, since I haven't driven one.
        Actionable Mango
        • 1 Year Ago
        @brotherkenny4
        This reminds me of a VW service repair bulletin for the Phaeton, describing how to "fix" the ash trays. The service bulletin was created because so many customers were complaining that the left and right ash trays did not open at identical rates.
      Rotation
      • 1 Year Ago
      chambo622: That console is normal sized on the outside, but the inside is tiny. It's all taken up by the air ducts to the rear seat vents. The console storage in a LEAF is many times larger. Tesla says there is something on the way and existing customers will be able to install it. That's good, just its doesn't really add much value until they get it out there! That's a great idea about using a hanger on the pano roof. I've seen people hang bags from the interior door handles.
      Rotation
      • 1 Year Ago
      It's just not much of a luxury car. It doesn't have a large pack of luxury features. This hasn't been much of an impediment to them so far. The attraction of the EVness pulls in customers more effectively than lane departure warning or 27 camera around-view monitors anyway. Forget the luxury upgrades for now. Fix the interior storage problem. You've got customers who are paying $90K for a car which has a secondary trunk big enough to hold all their groceries, but who have no pockets to put anything in when sitting in the cockpit.
        Grendal
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Rotation
        I agree. You could even use Elon's personal story about the demand for electric cars. How there were candlelight vigils over the EV1 and how that told him the demand for an electric car was there. Well, there are plenty of threads on the TMC forum over trying to figure out ways of storing things in the Model S. A customer, to fill the need, has actually designed a center console for stuff and a cup holder. This makes it clear the demand is there. That shows a lot of demand that is not being fulfilled. Of course, in Tesla's defense, it's a matter of prioritizing where you put your energy. Do you improve the technical aspects of the car or focus on the comfort aspects? Tesla has obviously chosen the technical. They will get around to the comfort but that won't be for a while.
      Dave
      • 1 Year Ago
      "Gasoline creates lots of gases that need to be vented to avoid pressure building up..." Do you seriously believe that? There are billions of sealed gasoline containers stored throughout the world.
      JVP
      • 1 Year Ago
      It's rather annoying how every article I read makes it clear that "Tesla doesn't release monthly sales figures". Good! Get over it! This obsession with immediate financial performance is one of the biggest problems with our media and Wall Street. Take a longer view, folks. You'll survive, and we'll be better for it. /rant
      Grendal
      • 1 Year Ago
      This makes sense. I hate to sound like Dan, but luxury = more weight. Though I still expect to see a luxury package show up in the Model S's future.
      purrpullberra
      • 1 Year Ago
      I am in the beginning phase of building 1,2 or 3 houses, not sure yet but I'm looking at a TON of architecture and styles and so forth and this occurred to me; the issue of "luxury" is different enough that the ModelS's Spartan, simple and gorgeous interior is a luxury in and of itself just as it is in some beautiful, Spartan houses. Not having all the cubbies and surfaces is absolutely the best part of the interior to me. I want a car with virtually nothing in it. I am thrilled that Tesla is doing this with the ModelS, building something bare that can be added to if one wishes. I just hope it stays that way. In fact, I can see that approach making sense in many different ways. If the interior can be decked out after the bare bones car is ready, or nearly ready, could add a bit of personalization that many customers want but no one is forced to pay for interior styling features they don't want. Some can't justify financing add-ons like that and want to buy things to add on later. And this way Tesla could do super high end interiors for the uber-wealthy which makes TONS of profit. I'll never understand why they haven't just swallowed a couple good local workshops to do that sort of thing in the factory. They have the clientele, room and money, they need profit, what's going on?!? Then Tesla should pay someone to make apps that work with phones and smart watches to access the vehicle (a la GoogleGlass app), these types of 'luxuries' are something the current customers and the media would surely rave about but that don't read as luxury items to the general auto industry. Some people keep mentioning features that most people find annoying as constituting 'luxury' even though the alarms/warnings have quickly trickled down to passé Hyundai's already. Some people think those type of gadgets are luxury and some think a completely blank and open car interior with the size and look of the ModelS' is another type of luxury. I guess no one is wrong since it is opinion but if most people call it a luxury car and instinctively refer to it as such then it must be in some certain way. Luxury isn't binary.
    • Load More Comments