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Tesla Model S finally gets a facelift

The new look goes into production today.

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Update: there actually is word on an upgraded 72-amp charger, in case you were holding your breath on that one. It's a $1,500 option for facelifted Model S cars. Check out this and all the other options on the updated Model S configurator. The original article continues below.

That was fast. Earlier today we posted about some leaked Tesla Model S facelift images. Apparently the company was about to make it official, so the images weren't "leaked" for very long before they were distributed through official channels. This, therefore, is officially the facelifted, slightly updated Tesla Model S. And it goes into production today.

Tesla says it'll be faster to charge.

A quick note: Tesla doesn't use model years, so this isn't the new 2016.5 Model S or something like that. One of the company's more interesting quirks is its propensity for rolling updates, like a software company (That is no coincidence). A few of these new updates are of the substantive improvement rather than merely aesthetic variety. Take the upgraded charger: it's now 48 amps, up from 40, so it now matches the standard charger in the Model X. Tesla says that'll make it faster to charge when connected to high-amperage chargers.

Additionally, the X's HEPA filtration system will make its way into the upgraded S. It'll provide exceptionally filtered air to the interior occupants, although it's worth questioning whether a filtering level sufficient to catch airborne pathogens is really necessary in a car. Maybe you'll be driving through a measles ward?

From an aesthetic standpoint, the front fascia will be the most obvious and consequential change to the consumer. It brings the styling inline with the Model X, and likely the production version of the Model 3. The headlights also adopt a Model X look. Inside, there are two new woods available to trim the interior: one that Tesla calls "Figured Ash", and the other simply a dark ash. That rounds out the changes this time around, although Tesla would like you to remember that over-the-air software updates may bring other changes as soon as they're available.

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