My brother-in-law just drove a Tesla for the first time. Well, I think it must have been the first electric car of any type that he’s driven. I was picking up my wife and daughters from the in-laws’ country house, where my brother-in-law’s family was spending some time as well. He’s a tech guy, so knew a little bit about Tesla despite having no real greenie interests. Naturally, I had to take him for a quick spin in the Model S 85D Tesla Shuttle I drove there. He was blown away by the acceleration, as everyone is.
My mother-in-law asked how much it cost. Er … ah … well … it’s not cheap.
But everything is relative, and in relative terms, the price of a Model S is absurd when you look at two factors: acceleration and size.
I noticed an article the other day about a new $293,000 Porsche GT2 RS, which can apparently accelerate to 60 mph (100 km/h) in a stunning 2.7 seconds. That’s a bit quicker than the Tesla Model S 85D we have (which I think takes 4.4 seconds to get to 60 mph), but a $140,000 Tesla Model S P100D gets there even quicker than the Porsche GT2 RS, in just 2.3 seconds (or 2.5 seconds according to the official Tesla Model S page).
For less than half the price of the two-seat Porsche, you can get a car that very comfortably seats 5 people and is quicker. I think I understand why some people might still choose the Porsche, but it doesn’t make much sense to me. In simple terms, here’s your choice: a two-seat Porsche that’s quicker than most cars ever produced … or an even quicker, much more spacious, higher-tech family sedan for half the price. There’s no real contest in my eyes.
Back to the simple Model S 85D, I’ll admit that I haven’t compared it to the Porsche, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the 85D actually felt quicker. The benefit EVs have is instant torque. When I test drove the BMW i8 plug-in hybrid right after the BMW i3 full electric, I was shocked because the much slower i3 felt quicker, since it didn’t have to pause at all to get up to speed (like the i8 had to do). As much as the Model S might beat the toe rings off a Porsche or Lamborghini in a sprint to 60 mph, it beats these cars even worse to 30 mph.
Despite no real historical interest in racing, I can see the appeal of taking an electric car to the drag strip — it’s a ton of fun testing and laughing with the instant torque, and even more fun humiliating gas cars that are “supposed to be” more macho and quicker.
Anyway, no offense to this pretty little Porsche GT2 RS, but it is overpriced and about 3 years too late to impress me. Worth tweeting about? Nah.
Note: You can spend more than $140,000 on a Tesla Model S P100D if you select additional options, but that’s irrelevant to the point here, and you can spend more than $293,000 on a Porsche GT2 RS if you want non-standard options added as well.