Richard’s Ride Extra: 2017 Tesla Model S P100D All-Electric
The interest in the electric car has been, so far, among a select group: Generally, people who are willing to cope with a limited range before charging.
But, the fastest innovator in electric car production is Tesla. Tesla is working to address the three main issues with electric vehicles:
1. The range. If I can't get there on the battery charge I have, I'm going to be stranded. Period. For most of us, that's not an option.
2. The charging time. If it takes hours and hours to charge the battery, that also doesn't make the change to electric do-able for many.
3. The cost. Our Tesla Model S P100D stickers at somewhere around $130,000.
Tesla has addressed all of these, as you will see in the video above. The P100D has about a 350 mile range. Where you can change in an emergency is almost a non-issue; in fact, the car informs the driver how much range they have via a map on the screen - and where the charging stations are on the route.
Tesla has even created its own charging station infrastructure, like at the Citgo station in Marshall, right off the highway.
Finally, Tesla has pre-orders on a mid-range model with a starting sticker of $35,000. That should bring the all-electric Tesla into budget range for many mainstream buyers. Of course the - ahem - detour for some on the road to a Tesla might be the access to purchasing, since the state of Michigan isn't allowing Tesla to court Michiganders via "galleries" and direct sales. Michigan law prohibits direct sales through non-franchised establishments, like traditional dealer networks. Even so, if you really want a Tesla and you live in Michigan, you can get one.
Click the video above to see the Tesla and our special ride which includes Renk from the "Live with Renk" show on 95.3 WBCK. Renk spent a lot of time using the driver assist mode, while I wanted to feel the response of the car - especially acceleration, which is nothing short of amazing.