Entries in Tesla (3)


Tesla Calls Electric Car Review a ‘Fake’

Tesla Motors(NEW YORK) -- Elon Musk, the billionaire CEO of electric car maker Tesla Motors Inc., lashed out at a New York Times reviewer who wrote about a nail-biting tale of woes trying to take one of the $100,000 vehicles on an extended motor trip.

On CNBC Monday, Musk called the review a “fake” and said the reviewer didn’t fully charge the Tesla Model S and took a detour during the test.  

NYTimes article about Tesla range in cold is fake,” Musk later tweeted.

Times reviewer John Broder wrote: “I drove a state-of-the-art electric vehicle past a lot of gas stations.  I wasn’t smiling.”

The reason, he said, was during the cold weather conditions, the car’s batteries didn’t deliver nearly the stated range and the only two charging stations between New York and Boston were too far apart to reach.  He wrote that he needed to have the car towed to a charging station after the battery quit.

In a statement responding to Musk’s comments, the newspaper said the review was “completely factual, describing the trip as it occurred.  Any suggestion that the account was ‘fake’ is, of course, flatly untrue.” And, the statement added, “There was no unreported detour.”

Tesla has a special fast-charging battery -- less than an hour -- that can be filled at charging stations under construction across the country.

The automaker claims the Model S has a range of up to 300 miles per charge, although Broder said in his tests it was less than half that and he was forced to throttle the heater to save power.

“Essentially, we think the article is a bit of a set up and is unreasonable,” Musk said on CNBC.

Tesla is closely watched by investors because it’s one of the few publicly traded electric car companies.  The 10-year-old, Silicon Valley-based company received $465 million in funding from the U.S. government and $10 million from the state of California.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Tesla S Electric Is "Motor Trend’s" Car of the Year

Tesla Motors(NEW YORK) -- Motor Trend magazine named Tesla Model S its 2013 Car of the Year, the first time a non-gasoline powered vehicle received the honor.

A panel of 11 judges voted unanimously for the Tesla Model S after driving 25 contenders in a closed-course environment, testing such factors as acceleration, brakes, and suspension tuning.

The Model S beat finalists including luxury and family cars, like the Ford C-Max Hybrid, Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, BMW 3 Series, Lexus GS, Porche 911, Porche Boxster, and Subaru BRZ, according to the magazine.

Edward Loh, editor-in-chief of Motor Trend, said the car was “truly a game changer” and the fastest American sedan tested.

Tesla plans to make 20,000 of the Model S cars next year.

The firm, based in Palo Alto, Calif., and founded in 2003, made headlines when it created the first all-electric sports car, the Tesla Roadster. 

The car company became “incredibly controversial” during the election season.  During one of the presidential debates, Gov. Mitt Romney famously called Tesla and Solyndra “losers” that had received support from the federal government.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Tesla Model S: Elon Musk's Electric Sedan Faster Than Porsche?

Tesla Motors(PALO ALTO, Calif.) -- With the Tesla Model S, Elon Musk seems to be trying to do for the electric car what Apple's iPod did for music -- make it profitable and very, very cool.

Musk, a serial innovator who already started PayPal and SpaceX, has now announced a souped-up version of the Model S sedan that will do zero to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds.  That's faster than some versions of the Porsche 911.

"Like a world-class endurance athlete, Model S was designed to be the epitome of efficiency," said Tesla Chief Designer Franz von Holzhausen on the company's blog.

Electric cars have, for years, been regarded as one of those environmentally-friendly phenomena guaranteed never to happen.  They were often pictured as overpriced, underpowered go-carts, with batteries that threatened to give out in the middle of the freeway on your way home.

Musk promises to change that perception.  The Model S, Tesla has promised, will go on sale next year at a starting price around $57,000.  It's not for the faint of wallet -- there are plenty of economy subcompacts out there if you're on a budget -- but the cost of gasoline is zero.  You plug it in when it's parked.

And you'll plug it in less often, Musk says.  The high-end Model S should have enough battery capacity to go more than 300 miles on a charge.  It is packed with Lithium-Ion batteries, mostly stored in a rack on the car's bottom.

The company has already been selling a small volume of Tesla Roadsters, but in January, the company said, it will start to phase them out to concentrate on the Model S.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio