Tesla Model S zips around a track using only electrons
Up until now, I have been skeptical of electric-only cars. For the most part, these vehicles have been cramped, expensive affairs with high price tags and limited driving range.
Time marches on and we are beginning to see real progress in this field. Tesla first came to the market with the Lotus Elise based Roadster and it was an impressive performer but was still priced much too high and had very limited functionality. While I still believe that plugin hybrids are the next logical step, electric only cars such as the forthcoming Nissan Leaf and Telsa Model S prove that you no longer have to be Ed Begley Jr. to live the electric car dream.
This Model S will start at about $50K (after tax incentives) and will offer a standard range of 160 to 300 miles depending on the battery pack chosen. The Model S will offer seating for up to 5 adults and 2 child seats.
"Model S doesn't compromise on performance, efficiency or utility -- it's truly the only car you need," said Tesla CEO, Chairman and Product Architect Elon Musk. "Tesla is relentlessly driving down the cost of electric vehicle technology, and this is just the first of many mainstream cars we're developing."
The Model S, along with the Nissan Leaf, are steps in the right direction. However, I am still dubious of any car that does not have a range extending gasoline engine. This concern is less if the range is truly 300 miles, but anything below 160 miles would make me quite nervous. We will have to see where the economy and gasoline prices are when the Model S debuts in late 2011.