I first saw a Tesla on Top Gear, where they tested the original Roadster on their test track. I was both impressed and not sure what to think about the car. Very heavy with a low center of gravity. It didn’t seem to cover the track like other cars, but maybe a new way of driving is needed.
It also seemed to have little range, which made it impractical in many ways. Tesla wasn’t very happy for multiple reasons. Overall, I suspect Top Gear didn’t represent things well.
In any case, I didn’t think much until a friend got a Model S. You can read about my ride in the next post, but I didn’t think this was special. My son and I had seen one in a mall store, and it was nice to think about the front trunk and lots of room, but it was a typical sedan. At the time I had a 911 and this wasn’t very interseting.
However, I read the Tesla Master Plan, and I liked the idea. Build cars that start to allow you to build newer and better cars. It’s a great plan, and it seemed a stretch, but it has worked.
I was also intrigued with all the computer power that they’ve put into the car. It’s in many ways a much better interface for managing lots of things about the car. Most importantly, the cars change over time. They can be updated.
Sure, I’ve had firmware updates to my BMW, and I’m sure the Carplay/Android Auto/etc. computer systems update, but really they are only updating minor things. They are also a little cumbersome to implement or they require a dealer visit. Tesla seemed to have figured out the software side of things.
They aren’t perfect, and no software company is, but they seem to be much better than other companies, with a paradigm I like.
I’ve also liked the idea of electric. I’ve seen a few cars over the years, most of which weren’t practical. The GM Gem, a three wheeled one in the Denver area with 24 car batteries, and a few other smaller ones. Really, none made sense for me. Even Tesla, when the early models were in the 200-250 mile range weren’t good enough.
However, I’ve thought that at some point many companies would find a way to build a platform and then put bodies on top. I’d have hoped by now we’d be able to buy multiple bodies and quick change them ourselves, but I’m guessing that isn’t something many people or companies want to do.
Next: Riding in a Tesla
If you are thinking of ordering one, I’ve got a referral code. You get 1,000 free Supercharger miles and so do I. Use: http://ts.la/john92950