The latest of Tesla’s groundbreaking technologies have been unleashed, and with performance figures that will send supercar manufacturers back to the drawing boards, the Model S is again stunning the automotive world with two new features: dual-motors and auto-pilot capabilities.
After posting a tweet on Oct. 1 that would have had fictional spy Sterling Archer raising an eyebrow and asking about phrasing, the “D” was revealed to be the newly available dual-motor option for the Tesla Model S. The revamped Model S was unveiled at an Oct. 9 event in Los Angeles at the Hawthorne Municipal Airport, according to Bloomberg Businessweek, amid thousands of Tesla and technology fans.
Amid blasting music, lighted tunnels lined for test drives and jokes about wearing velcro pants, Musk explained the latest features to the crowd, and specifically how adding an all-wheel drive (AWD) system increases not only performance, but also efficiency and range for the first time.
Musk described in an interview with USA Today how they had clear performance goals with the Model S, saying how he wanted to “match a car that I used to own, which is one of the greatest supercars of all time, the McLaren F1, and that had a 0 to 60 time of 3.2 seconds,” as he described. “And that took a lot of effort, but we were able to match supercar acceleration in the Model S. Anyone can get that acceleration, so you don’t have to be an expert driver on a special track with a lot of advance preparation… this just works.”
This means that the performance version of the Model S, the P85D, is capable of producing 691 hp, reaching a top speed of 155 mph and accelerating from 0 to 60 mph in 3.2 seconds, the same as an F1. Above is a video, uploaded by SlashGear to YouTube on Oct. 9, that demonstrates the new acceleration of the new Model S.
As for the auto-pilot capabilities, they are limited at this time, but have already been installed in all cars produced over the past 2 weeks. Musk described them as being similar to the auto-pilot features found on aircraft, and include braking in case of obstacles, automatic lane-changing when the turn signal is activated on highways, recognition of an obstacle and resistance to a lane change if an obstacle is in the way, such as a highway divider or another car, and more. The video above also demonstrates the auto-pilot feature.
To order a Model S with dual-motor, pricing begins at $91,070. You can learn more on the Tesla Motors website at: www.teslamotors.com/models/design.
(Source: USA Today, Businessweek)