Last week I wrote about the Tesla Model S P85+ while it was in Park. This week, I’m going to put in Drive.
Open the door and get inside, and you’re greeted with a completely silent cabin. No big deal, all cars are quiet when you get in. Put your foot on the brake, select Drive, and the car creeps forward, and there is still no sound. It’s eerie. When you’ve been getting into cars for years, you expect the VROOOM sound and the car shuddering to life. When you don’t feel that, even after car starts moving, it’s surreal.
However, the truly supernatural part happens when you step on the accelerator. Not sure if there’s enough words to describe it, so I’ll just quote some of the passengers who have experienced it.
“HOLY CRAP!!!” (Manager of resort, who begged for a ride).
“Are you trying to kill me?” (dude from my gym, who drives a BMW).
“EEYYAAAHHHH!!!” (3 or 4 others who begged for a ride…)
“Don’t get a speeding ticket!” (My mom).
“I’ve only felt queasy in a roller coaster. And your car.” (Dad).
“Can I borrow it for my out of town client meeting?” (My wife).
Here’s the thing: The Tesla Model S’s electric motor allows it to accelerate at speeds you’ve never knew were possible. For instance, it will launch from 0-10 mph THE INSTANT YOU STEP ON IT. If you floor a Porsche 911, there’s a split second delay for the throttle to react, then the RPMs have to rise about 3500 RPM before it really starts to move. Put it this way – once you experience the INSTANTANEOUS acceleration of an electric motor, a gas engine will feel clumsy, noisy and outdated.
Here’s another Model S exclusive sensation. Floor it at 60 mph and you are CATAPULTED to 70, in silence. Same with 70 to 80. Or 30 to 40. The only way to reproduce that in a Porsche 911/M6/Viper/Corvette is to be two gears too low. As you know, holding the engine between 4000 and 5000 RPMs will be unpleasant after about 10 seconds. Not to mention burn lots of gas. The Model S just loafs around, and accelerates ferociously, at any speed, with absolutely no delay, in complete silence. Now I know how the gentlemen felt getting back on their horses after taking the Model T for a spin.