Tesla Unveils Its First Four Door Sedan Model S

Submitted by lalit on March 27, 2009 - 2:55pm.

We normally don’t cover cars on our blog, but this one is special, it is the first four-door sedan from Tesla – the company pioneering all electric vehicles. Tesla had announced last year that they would launch a relatively affordable all electric car in 2009. They kept their promise and officially unveiled Model S sedan for just under $50,000 - $49,900 after $7,500 tax break.

The Model S will get a single speed transmission that will propel it to 60mph in 5.5 to 6.0 seconds with top speed of 130mph. The dashboard of the car is actually a 17-inch haptic touchscreen display with full 3G capabilities. There are no buttons on the dashboard. There will be three battery pack options – for base price you will get 160-mile range pack and you will have option to upgrade to either 230-mile or 300-mile range pack for additional price.

Tesla was able to improve mass and volumetric performance of batteries by using more advanced cell chemistry. The new batteries can be fully charged in 4 hours on a 220V outlet, a 45-minute QuickCharge can give it 80 percent capacity. The car can be charged on 100V, 220V and 440V outlet. Tesla is also working with government-affiliated partners to set up battery changing stations at various locations. These stations will be able to change the battery in 5-8 minutes, which is quicker than filling up your car with gas. However, we are not that excited about battery swapping, because two rechargeable batteries can’t be same. For example you might be swapping your relatively new battery for a battery that has undergone more charge cycles, which will make the battery less efficient. We would have preferred a quick-charging station in place of changing station that would charge the battery via high-voltage outlet in about 10 to 15 minutes.

According to Tesla, buying Model S will save you around $10-$15K when compared to gas powered sedan of similar size. The company further adds that buying Model S will be comparable to leasing a smaller $35,000 gas powered car. Everything about Tesla Model S sounds very good, but now the main problem the car won’t hit the market till 2011.
[Via Tesla Motors]