Tesla Model 3 Is Changing Auto History

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Originally published on EVANNEX

Tesla Motors [NASDAQ: TSLA] is in the throes of changing the course of automotive history as we know it. Even the Detroit News — home-team paper to GM, Chrysler, and Ford — admits the Tesla Model 3 is, “the most intriguing auto story since the Model T, and Elon Musk is the boldest American auto entrepreneur since Henry Ford.” In its first week alone, the Tesla had amassed, “about $14 billion in implied future sales, making this the single biggest one-week launch of any product ever.” And it’s growing. Last week, Tesla’s Elon Musk said, “we are now almost at 400,000 orders for the Model 3.

Tesla Model 3, by Zach Shahan | CleanTechnica

A fascinating piece in Bloomberg Business* peppered with charts and graphs provides proof-positive evidence that the Model 3 is poised to be an industry game changer. Why? “The Model 3’s unveiling was unique in the 100-year history of the mass-market automobile. The closest analog is that of the 1955 Citroen DS, which took in 80,000 deposits over 10 days at the Paris Auto Show. Much like the Model 3, the DS was lauded as an engineering marvel that was years ahead of its time. A more recent parallel among technological sensations is Apple Inc.’s iPhone.”

And, compared with its immediate competitors, the Tesla Model 3 will be extremely quick. “The Model 3 represents the first time an affordable electric car doesn’t have to apologize for running on batteries. Conventional wisdom once held that electric cars would always run slow and would never be objects of automotive lust. Tesla flipped that on its head by clocking some of the fastest times from 0 to 60 miles per hour in the world with its Model S. The cheaper Model 3 is no slouch, either.”

In addition, the Model 3 is the first electric car to check off all the right boxes. “Affordable? Check. Desirable? Check. But how far can you go before having to charge it again? That’s always been a foundational question. Could this upstart really make a long-range car with the grace of the Model S—and deliver it at a reasonable price? Apparently, yes. The Model 3 offers the cheapest range available for any electric car, even though it retains some of the richest features. In the long run, this may be one of the most important contributions of the car, if it is to bring the electric automobile fully into the mass market.”

How did Tesla engineer the Model 3 to be so fast while achieving such a long range for an electric vehicle? One of the secrets is the vehicle’s aerodynamics: “Tesla is also expanding range by eking more miles out of the same electricity. Musk said on Twitter that he thinks the final Model 3 will have a drag coefficient of 0.21. That would make it one of the sleekest cars ever sold.”

But, will there be sufficient charging infrastructure once Tesla Motors starts its Model 3 vehicle deliveries to customers? “As it turns out, charging isn’t as big a hurdle as many drivers imagine. Sure, there are still roughly 13 gas stations for every public charging location. But that’s ignoring the most common type of charging station of all: your garage. About two-thirds of U.S. homes have them. With an at-home charger and 215 miles of range, most customers rarely need to stop at a charging station. Looking at it that way, charging locations already outnumber gas stations by about 400 to 1.”Source: Bloomberg Business*

An unofficial Tesla Motors advertisement, created by a Tesla fan, showcasing the Tesla line-up including the new Model 3 (Source: killr0y)

And the charging infrastructure for Tesla Model 3 is growing fast: “Public charging stations are primarily needed for drivers who spend long stretches on the road at a time—be it for road trips or business travel. For most of these drivers, it’s the speed of the chargers—not the absolute number—that matters most, so Tesla is focusing on building a charging network with the fastest chargers in the world. Tesla Superchargers can provide 170 miles of driving range in 30 minutes, and owners of the Model X and S can use them all without charge. The number of Superchargers will double this year alone, according to Tesla.”

Looking at all these charts and graphs, it’s clear that the Tesla Model 3 signifies a vehicle that will have sales, speed, performance, economy, and a fast-growing charging infrastructure like no other car before it. Yes, the Tesla Model 3 is positioned to transform the automotive landscape forever. But… no, you can’t get one just yet. We’ll all need plenty of patience until we can get our hands on the Tesla Model 3. To that end, perhaps it’s best to quote Tesla CEO Elon Musk as he (himself) once said, “Patience is a virtue, and I’m learning patience. It’s a tough lesson.”

*Source: Bloomberg Business

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Matt Pressman

Matt is all about Tesla. He’s a TSLA investor, and he loves driving the family's Model 3, Model S, and Model X company cars. As co-founder of EVANNEX, a family business specializing in aftermarket Tesla accessories, he’s served as a contributor/editor of Electric Vehicle University (EVU) and the Owning Model S and Getting Ready for Model 3 books. He writes daily about Tesla and you can follow his work on the EVANNEX blog.

Matt Pressman has 332 posts and counting. See all posts by Matt Pressman

93 thoughts on “Tesla Model 3 Is Changing Auto History

  • The Bolt is not yet being sold. It’s supposed to start later in the year. It’s unlikely other cars will catch up with Tesla by the time the Mod 3 comes out.

    • If the Germans (esp MB) used their brains and joined Tesla using SuperChargers, they could use their very deep pockets and years of experience to produce a new EV relatively quickly IMO

      • Is that like the evil step mother in Cinderella?
        Yes they could, but will they.

      • EU is developing a 300kW plug.

        Tesla plugs do not offer that much power.

        It would have been nice if Tesla and others agreed on a 300kW plug. But sadly they did a repeat of the NTSC/PAL war.

        • Tesla wàs building superchargers before there was a standard. Tesla is actually bilding them, not just talking about them. I love standards, and hope eventually Teslas and others use one, but it’s not right to compare shipping product to vaporware.

        • There is no war…until someone other than Tesla is even close their 135 KW rates. Tesla has the only long distance cars and they need to be charged for road trips. Since 2012. Not when eM-CG, SAE, CEN-CENELEC, GB/T, CHAdeMO, CCS, JVS etc gets together to approve a standard that works with fast charging for long range cars.

          • Tesla is not present in most nations. When it comes to diesel, you do not have GM diesel and Toyota diesel. You just have EN 590 diesel.

          • You have diesel and gasoline, or even different grades of gasoline. Jeez, why didn’t, couldn’t, they just have settled on one? It would have made things so much simpler!

          • Jet fuel in USA is so different to jet fuel in AUS, Europe, Dubai. Or it is the same worldwide.

          • Railroad tracks are the same gauge every… Oh, wait… Cancel that thought. Such is life.

          • High Speed Rail in every nation is the same gauge!

            Be it Japan, China, Europe, Taiwan, Malaysia.

          • There is no other long distance EV. None. Nada. Zip. Zed. Zero.

            Clearly whether it is in only one country of nearly 200, Tesla is the defacto long distance standard.

            EN 590 was not set until 1993. Do you think everyone just sat on their hands waiting for a standard until 1993?

        • They’ve got 120kw now, 150kw soon, and there’s no reason it couldn’t go higher.

          If they’d waited for a standard GM would still be making Hummers.

          • CHAdeMO can go higher too probably.

          • “probably?”

          • So Tesla plugs can go higher and CHAdeMo cannot.

          • If you insist?

          • Currently their DC fast protocol is written at 62.5 kwh. Nothing says they couldn’t go higher, but their stated goal is 125a @ 500v. Tesla is already 2.5x that number.

            In America AC charging will be slower due to the nature of our grid, not so in Europe where 3phase penetrates much deeper.

      • BMW and Toyota were early investors in Tesla, Toyota made a killing on the stock they owned. Too bad they pulled out and left. Stupid them.

    • GM has run the EPA test cycle in-house and is simply waiting for final/official numbers. It will be over 200 miles as stated. Tesla, on the other hand, has a design target of at least 215 miles. They also stated that their battery will be smaller than 60 kWh. Same goes for the cd. 0.21 is a “target”. Look at the picture of the VW and then compare to the M3. Do you really think the current M3 is only 0.02 cd worse? Tesla has really backed themselves into a corner with these specs. I think we’ll see them all change by 2018.

      • You don’t know Tesla very well, do you?

        • was gonna say the same thing, how many times have people save Tesla can not do it lol, he forgets they will own the biggest battery plant in the world, no one will come close to what they can do in the next 10 years.

          • Well, I gotta say that the anticipation is killing me. Can’t wait to say I told you so. 😉

  • “Tesla Model 3 is, ‘the most intriguing auto story since the Model T, and Elon Musk is the boldest American auto entrepreneur since Henry Ford.’ ”

    That is actually more appropriate than it seems at a casual glance…since legend has it that one of the derivations of Elon used in South Africa is Henry, and the place where the oxen cross the river is known as a Ford!

  • It will be interesting to see if they can get rid of the external rear-view mirrors by the time this comes out. I think they should add the rear wheel aero shleld as an option to get ‘the most aerodynamically efficient car ever’ for the extra efficiency ‘nuts’ out there.

    • Yes. This is being held up by slow regulators. A good system with webcams and a head-up display can give far better rear view coverage than wing mirrors. This is not a Tesla issue, I expect all automakers would like to change ASAP.

      • Thanks, I will pile on. And add fender skirts. What a wonderful world it would be if efficiency measures like rear view cameras were mandatory and outside mirrors were banned for new cars.

        • I have no idea why rear wheel skirts are not standard.

          • For those without autopilot, reverse parking still requires skill to avoid scraping the gutter.
            That’s a skill our learner driver children lack.

          • Snow, perhaps? In MN the normal fender gaps on most cars will get so packed with snow that it can become hard to turn the front wheel at times. I imagine that rear wheel skirts would be a disaster in the heavy, wet snow that we often get up here.

          • Removable…wheel skirks.

        • I don’t think Tesla will ever offer skirts. The company wants to be in sync with upscale fashion, which fetishizes huge wheels for some reason. If I were rich, I’d buy a Model 3 and have a customizer do an extensive weight reduction and aeromod (see Ecomodder for more) with skirts and extended tail pushing for 100 wh/mile at 60 mph.

          About 30 years ago I read about an inventor using narrow prisms to function as car side view mirrors, sticking out only a couple of inches and projecting images onto an internal viewfinder like a periscope. Yet I can’t find anything on this in the Internet. What happened?

          • Are you an ecomodder? I love that stuff. One of my fantasy cars is that Dutch one that collects sun from panels on it. It all tube lattice construction.
            Or the EV-1. Best of all, the Auto Motive X prize winner.
            Those wheels are covered.
            If you wanted to have covered wheels in the front, you attach the wheel pants to the steered wheel. When directed straight ahead, the fairing would mate with the edge of the body. It would only stick out if the wheels were turned.

            No efficient high speed aircraft lets its wheels hang in the breeze. They are all faired. Preferably retracted altogether. Cant do that on a car, but the spinning disks can be removed from the airstream and replaced with a surface continuous with the rest of the body.

            That prism thing sounds like a binocular. Seems like that might work too.

          • Big wheels are good for potholes I think.

          • Actually no, the reverse is true, at least on a given car. Larger wheels typically have thinner tires (thinner in the sense of the sidewall). These cushion the blow of a bump or a pothole much less than a smaller wheel with a taller sidewall. This doesn’t just translate to an uncomfortable ride on rough roads, but it leads to excessive wheel damage as well. For city driving you’re usually better off getting the smaller wheel option with larger tires that have taller sidewalls (more rubber and air to cushion the blow).

        • A lot of talk about fender skirts. I’d think they’d be much more effective than disappearing door handles – and even side view mirrors. Anyone have data?

      • The regulators are correct to refuse the removal of side mirrors. In the case of systems failure, it is *incredibly important* to be able to see behind you, even if all you’re doing is coasting to the side of the road.

        It’s like having direct mechanical linkages to the brakes. 99% of the time, you do not use it. When you need it, you NEED IT. I’m not entirely comfortable with only having hydraulic brakes, frankly, but at least they still work if the electrical systems all fail.

        It has been suggested that the emergency side mirrors can be mounted *inside* the car, in the manner in which a number of hypermilers do it. This would be fine.

        • Side mirrors are indeed not life crucial as the brakes are. If a side-cam fails, you can still drive with additional care. It happened that I had my side mirror broken for a few days until being repaired. It’s OK.
          Inside mirrors are a clever quick fix for those emergencies.

      • To me, an invaluable benefit of a small cam vs. a plain mirror is to avoid being blinded by cars behind you at night, especially on the highway.

    • Maybe a option, but you might have to wait for a after market version.

      • Uh, I think you mean “an”. (twice)

    • The mirrors could fold during Autopilot mode and unfold during manual mode.

    • I think the nose (and tail, and maybe even other parts) should change shape, “transformer-like”, at higher speeds.

  • Those “base model” 0 – 60 mph times for legacy ICE vehicles are country dependent and will not usually be that good.

    In the Model 3s case, in many countries it is going leave the ICE chewing kicked up PM10 by more than those numbers suggest.

  • “Full speed charging stations”

    What’s a full speed charging station? Why would Superstations be lumped with slower chargers?

    Has Tesla already announced a Mary Kay version of the Mod 3?

    • You mean that pink one?

  • The aero Cd of the Bolt is so bad by comparison I doubt it will beat the Model 3 for highway range.

  • Elon Musk said the Model 3 will have “at least” 215 miles range. I suspect they’ll tweak it upwards as needed to beat all competition (except for higher end Teslas) such as a long range Leaf.

  • I find it intriguing that Tesla has had to produce performance Electric Vehicles to make them compelling. There are so many arguments to be made for a typical commuter or errand running vehicle having no need to be fast and yet here we are, the number one selling EV is not just fast, its ludicrously fast. People are such interesting creatures. So often it is not about what we need, but what we want….

    Either way, good on Tesla for making EV’s attractive. Hopefully more economical EV’s will follow!

    • Part of it is that there is a stigma to “commuter” or “errand” car. Gas engines are actually more efficient on the highway than the city (lower MPG but better conversion of fuel to energy) so it was easy to declare the American car a universal appliance 100 years ago and rebuild the country to fit – which meant death for the early electric cars. We believe we are entitled to machines that give every one of us the freedom to go everywhere in our country even if we hate and fear most of it.

    • Elon Musk says Tesla’s next car will be even cheaper than the Model 3

      “I’m super-excited about being able to produce a car that most people can afford,” Musk said of the new Model 3. “And there will be future cars that are even more affordable down the road. But, with something like the Model 3, it’s designed such that roughly half the people will be able to afford the car. Then, with fourth generation and smaller cars, we’ll ultimately be in the position where everyone will be able to afford the car.”

    • Performance is not the selling point.

      Range is.

      Tesla were the first to put in a huge 60kWh battery.

      The rivals woke up and are now putting in 30kWh batteries.

      • I am not disagreeing that range is the most important issue but I’m surprised you dismiss my point. I have not seen one youtube video of a Tesla beating an ICE vehicle on range, oh wait because they still can’t. Range/charging is still an issue even if Tesla has done a great job of making it a small issue. More importantly education on range is still a weak spot but improving day by day as mostly Tesla educates people and soon the ChevyBolt will hopefully do the same, though GM still has a larger charging issue than Tesla.

        Tesla could save money putting smaller less powerful motors into the Model 3 but instead they know they must compete on performance to appeal to today’s mass market buyer. As I already mentioned I think that is ludicrous (deliberate word) but it is the reality. Most people don’t need a fast car but sex sells. I am a serious car enthusiast and it makes me laugh when the only thing a non car person wants to know is horsepower…

        • I want an EV because I can turn on the heater remotely using a smartphone app – maybe from thousands of miles away.

          Some want an EV because they would not have to deal with getting it serviced every 10,000 miles.

          Next, maybe I could authorise a certain phone number to open the frunk of my car to put a parcel in.

          ie, a courier.

          From my smartphone app.

          So basically I send a QR code to a phone number – then get the reversing camera to read the QR code on the mobile phone of the courier and if it matches, open the frunk once.

          Courier drops the parcel into the frunk – shuts the frunk. All done while I am 10 miles away.

          • I think the frunk should be called the ‘snoot’ in the UK.

          • Don’t expect it to be called the fanny pack….

          • How best can one combine “bonnet” and “boot”? Bonnoot?

    • I think the ludicrous thing kind of happened by accident.
      They did it because they could, with relative ease compared to other super cars. And it delivers fabulous margins that they can plough back in.
      Always, a means to an end.

  • The M3 will not be available in quantity for TWO years,
    so I don’t think it is “changing history”.

    • Didn’t Ford change tack a week ago – announcing a long range EV? Sounds like change to me.

    • It already received over 400,000 reservations proving through the roof demand. Nothing has ever been seen like that in history so, yeah, history has been changed.

      • This fact is changing manufacturers plans from Berlin to Tokyo.

    • The fact that availability in quantity is not occurring now, doesn’t preclude that the change can be real.

      Changing history is when enough observers agree that an event will do so, only to be be validated later.
      Regarding Tesla’s model 3, the shake sent throughout the industry by its announcement is the telltale sign of a big change to come.

      • Maybe a potential change indicator, the Model S DID change things, the facts show that.

    • I do.

  • The map is useful, but it would be more informative if there were two maps, one for Level 2 (including Destination Charging for Tesla) and DC fast charger (including Tesla Superchargers).

  • Looking at the aerodynamics, it seems like aerodynamic wheels and wheel skirts are the only way to bring the Cd on Model 3 down further. I wonder if they’ll offer those as options….

  • What’s happening now is that the shareholders of the big car companies are starting to worry that they’re missing out. Maybe the bureaucrats of the automotive status quo are lying about EVs as much to fool the investors as to fool the consumers. When they can’t fool them anymore, things will change.

    • Exactly! As Fiat-Chrysler boss admitted publicly recently, their; business is about fuel engines put on wheels. ICE is at the heart of their trade; this is why they hate electric cars. Thousands patents about ICE going to smoke and ashes! Entire engine manufacturing lines and decades of know-how thrown away. Sure they hate being forced that route.

  • No. There is no car even announced that has the range, power and styling of the Model 3. By the time one is announced, it will be years behind.

    In fact there is no car company that isn’t years behind Tesla and none show any signs of catching up/

    • I wonder if Tesla will enter the motorcycle market.

      • Keep your eye on the 2020s for that, and a pickup.

  • I’ve not seen any discussion about whether an BEV (Model 3 size) with a smaller engine, 0-60 around 10 seconds (plenty for most people) would also be able to have smaller battery pack, good CD, and still have high range. I admit to way less knowledge to answer this question.

    I know my V6 Passat had plenty of acceleration but still gave over 30 mpg on highway. A 12 year newer, 4-cyl rental with less acceleration gave 28 so not necessarily true that smaller, slower lighter gave better mpg for ICE.

    • Ok here goes. At steady state on the highway, the only way the motor matters is if its designed too weakly (too much resistance) so is inefficient, or is designed too much for power for a light load, so loses efficiency that way.
      Other than those things, EV motors are incredibly efficient over a wide range of operating conditions and contribute little to efficiency.

      This, though. One reason the dual motor Teslas are more efficient is that the gearing is different for front and rear motors. Why? Because thats a way of being able to hit higher speeds with one and higher acceleration with the other.

      It works like this. For a single motor, single gearbox setup, efficiency is a compromise. Its top speed versus acceleration also. To achieve both acceleration and top speed, one motor is geared for top speed, the other for acceleration.
      The two motors help provide a way of sidestepping the efficiency limitation.
      That gives the two motor Teslas higher range than the single motor, even with the same pack. There could be other things that do that, too. If the motor resistance is low, less loss. Also, there is loss in the motor controller. All those things add up.

      So its different from an ICE engine. Electric motors only benefit weakly from gearing because they have wide efficiency and torque ranges.
      I mean you can get faster acceleration from multiple gears, but why bother. Its not worth the weight. (sounds like a pun)

      What does determine the range? Battery capacity versus drag. The smaller care will hopefully have a smaller frontal area and less drag.
      Then if its a skateboard. Its the relationship between frontal area, and underbody area. Probably stays near constant, if all sides scale equally, which IMO, has many design reasons to do so.

      That means all other things considered equal (same material construction, aluminum, steel, CFRP, and aero form factor (L/W/H) ratios being constant between different cars, a smaller car will be capable of the same range as larger one. Its just the smaller car will use less battery capacity to achieve the same range by dint of its ratio metrically smaller drag.

      • Thank you! Let me see if I can rephrase and summarize your thoughtful response correctly:

        Given a car with either of two motors in it and no difference in battery capacity. One motor is sized to barely achieve acceptable acceleration and hill climbing, the other, significantly larger is sized to give awesome acceleration.

        When cruising down the highway at same speed and using same acceleration levels in traffic, both motors will give virtually identical range? I’m assuming larger motor’s weight increase is close to negligible effect.

        Now, if I use capability of larger motor for jack rabbit starts but always use just regenerative braking for slowing down, do the higher accelerations hurt range that much? I’m starting to think they don’t; you’re accelerating harder but for a shorter period so everything cancels. That is wonderful if true.

        EV’s sound better all the time.


        • Lets put it this way. As an engineer, I am obliged to say “how much”. I can’t really do that without specifics. What I am really trying to say is that energy used is proportional to load. Normally, you don’t do ludicrous acceleration all the time. (I hope. Altho Zach did get a ticket, I think, and its all that juice is addictive 🙂 )
          However, anytime you go on the highway at 70mph, you have more load for more time than just about any other time you use your EV. So since efficiency is about all the same most of the time, maybe a bit worse under stupefying acceleration runs, the nod goes to the largest load for the longest time which means the most energy. Thats highway. I can say that fairly definitively and reasonably.

          To do it justice, I would have to do an analysis of in city losses due to acceleration accounting for regeneration. We need not get too carried away with that. As an engineer, I have come to respect real world data as a source of verification. There we have ample evidence that EVs have much lower highway than city range, with highway range sometimes as low as 50% of city range.
          Check out Zero motorcycles. The city range is almost 200 miles. The highway range is only about 100. EV cars are better, maybe 60-70%. I noticed this immediately driving a Think City. The range plummeted driving at highway speeds.

      • Thanks! Let me rephrase to see if I’ve got it right.

        So, given identical cars: one with acceptable acceleration from smaller motor, one with Tesla acceleration. Same battery pack. Assuming that weight increase is negligible ( because bigger motor is heavier and requires bigger drive train).

        They take same trip, same time, same speeds, same acceleration (higher potential acceleration not used). Both end up running out of juice at same point. Is this basically what you’re saying?

        Is it also true that if the more powerful car uses its higher acceleration (but always to same speed) during trip, the range stays about the same? Higher acceleration but shorter time to get to same speed would use nearly same amount of juice.

        Given most people want to make jack rabbit starts to next traffic light (drives me nuts), the second question means it won’t matter with EV’s whereas it’s a big factor (on mpg) with ICE’s.

        The whole high acceleration thing for EV’s has been bothering me because I’ve been carrying over ideas from ICE’s. Seemed like high acceleration was wasting juice. Instead it’s almost a “have your cake and eat it too”.

        • Higher acceleration will reduce range, just like in an ICE. An EV motor may be more efficient if its bigger, because resistive losses are less with more copper. The subject becomes technical and more complex as you delve in, but suffice to say, the range over which EV motors remain highly efficient is broad.
          As long as you are not accelerating so much that the motor is overloaded, the efficiency remains pretty good. There are still two ends of the spectrum where efficiency can drop.
          1. At low speeds a larger electric motor can have higher parasitic losses, so inefficient there. That doesn’t matter as much for range, unless you spend your whole time at 5mph. Even so, the drain rate is so low, it probably doesn’t matter much in real world driving.
          2. At high acceleration, the larger electric motor is better. Under those conditions, current is high and resistive, I squared R loss is higher.

          That said, if you drive normally and the motor isn’t absurdly large or small, it really won’t matter that much how big the electric motor is. There are some details about how the motor is designed and geared for acceleration vs top speed and efficiency, but I am not going to get into that. That will suffice for now. To be reasonable. These statements are broad, and not specific. I suspect any decent EV designer will find some mild exceptions to these rules, but thats pretty much it. And there might be some things I forgot.

      • test

      • So, given identical cars: one with acceptable acceleration from smaller motor, one with Tesla acceleration. Same battery pack. Assuming that weight increase is negligible ( because bigger motor is heavier and requires bigger drive train).

        They take same trip, same time, same speeds, same acceleration (higher potential acceleration not used). Both end up running out of juice at same point. Is this basically what you’re saying?

        Is it also true that if the more powerful car uses its higher acceleration (but always to same speed) during trip, the range stays about the same? Higher acceleration but shorter time to get to same speed would use nearly same amount of juice.

        Given most people want to make jack rabbit starts to next traffic light (drives me nuts), the second question means it won’t matter with EV’s whereas it’s a big factor (on mpg) with ICE’s.

        The whole high acceleration thing for EV’s has been bothering me because I’ve been carrying over ideas from ICE’s. Seemed like high acceleration was wasting juice. Instead it’s almost a “have your cake and eat it too”.

        • Yup. You just about got it there. For an EV, energy usage is pretty much proportional to drag only. We are not used to this. With ICE, efficiency is also effected by engine size. There is a lot of parasitic loss, and heat has to be wasted. There is some effect with EVs, but its way lower. A too small EV motor might actually be lower efficiency. A larger motor could have less resistive loss.
          Jack rabbit acceleration does use more energy than smooth acceleration.
          What we have here is a situation where an EV has much better means of dealing with city losses than highway. Regeneration, if efficient, cancels a lot of the loss due to moving a heavy body, but not all of it.
          If you abuse an EV at slow speeds it will also be inefficient. Its just a lot easier to be efficient at slow speeds with regeneration.
          Keep in mind, you have about 2 gasoline gallons worth of energy. Thats why real EV designers slave to lower highway aero drag.
          This graph is instructive. It shows how much aero drag dominates at highway speeds. (more than tire resistance, gearbox, etc.)
          This graph illustrates the extraordinary torque curves of the Tesla EV. You will never see a torque curve like that out of an ICE. Max torque at zero rpm. Torque flat up to a limit, then falling smoothly thereafter.

          • I really appreciate your help getting my head totally around this. Never got it before. A bit of a mystery to me why Elon such a nut on acceleration. Why not? It’s basically free.

          • Elon enjoys a fast car, look at the gasmobiles he’s owned. His first big purchase when he got his first big check was a Mclaren F1.

            But Tesla wasn’t started as a ‘fast car’ company. It’s main purpose is to produce fuel free cars and drag the rest of the industry away from petroleum. Fast is simply an attribute of electric motors. And fast, blazingly fast, gets a lot of attention.

          • “Fast is simply an attribute of electric motors” Yeah, I get it – now. Just embarrassed it took so long because my degree is in EE. Not that I ever actually worked with anything “electrical” – until I retired. I’m now a near expert on boat electrical systems.

          • I think it first dawned on me how fast electric motors reached full speed when I saw a video of belt sander racing.

            I could relate to that. I’m used to bracing myself before pulling the trigger on a belt sander, those puppies can jump across the room.

          • Belt sander racing?!

          • Well… I guess so, sort of. As long as the battery has fast enough discharge, only the motor and mass of the vehicle matter. Stated another way, its just dumping as much of the energy into the motor as possible in a short time. Motors are pretty good, light and powerful. The NCA battery is a pretty good power battery. Believe it or not, one can do better for raw acceleration.
            I was privileged to meet both Eva Hakkanson and Bill Dube. Nice folks. Really liked them.

        • I believe the most power used by an electric motor is from initial start-up (but I may be wrong) anyone care to jump in on this one ?

  • I can’t help myself. I find this so exciting it is ridiculous!

  • The Bolt is a hatchback/mini crossover, not really in the same class as a low profile sedan. Seem like very a different market to me.

  • did not put my depsot down as by the time i decided to do it, it was way past the first 200k so mile well wait for it to come out. But I WILL HAVE THIS CAR. Will be my first new car ever changing up for the Japanese cars to an american one. I have never bought a ford or GM before due to growing up in the 90s and knowing they sucked. But I have thought strongly about the volt. But i think this is my new car, cant wait 🙂 soon as current one is ready to be upgrade Tesla here I come.

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