Telsa Motors is arguably the most successful electric car maker in the world, and journalists have rightly praised the fantastic Model S sedan. Even so though, Tesla seems wary of media attention, and the company is ready to pounce on any negative perceptions of their electric baby. Elon Musk came out swinging against a recent New York Times article, pitting the Old Grey Lady against the Silicon Valley Bad Boy.
The New York Times piece, written by John M. Broder, has the writer driving the Tesla Model S from the Newark, Delaware Tesla Supercharger station to the Supercharger in Milford, Connecticut, some 200 miles away, visiting friends in Stonington and and staying the night in Groton. While Broder managed to make the trip from Delaware to Milford without a problem, he failed to fully recharge the Model S before taking it all over Eastern Connecticut.
Broder also failed to plug the Model S in overnight, so come morning he found the 90 remaining miles he had when he parked the EV had dropped to just 25 miles. Broder charges at a local utility’s EV chargining station, but obviously not for long enough, as his Model S only makes it halfway from Norwich back to Milford before shutting down. Broder blames the cold, and says as great as the Tesla is, it is clearly not there yet.
While Broder claims he stayed on route and within the parameters Tesla set out for him, Elon Musk claims that the data proves otherwise. According to the Tesla Motors CEO, Broder took an unscheduled detour through Manhattan, exceeded the speed limit by as much as 10 mph, and did not fully charge the Model S, something Broder admits to. This led to Broder running out of juice.
It should be noted that other outlets like Motor Trend have gotten about 240 miles per charge, though that was under ideal Southern California conditions. The winter weather can reduce driving range as much as 10%, according to Tesla reps.
Musk is quite defensive of his EV company after British motoring show Top Gear produced a piece that at best plays fast and loose with the facts. Tesla even filed a lawsuit over the episode, though that lawsuit was dismissed. Musk has promised a blog post published all the data as he sees it, and once he does, maybe we’ll have a clearer picture of just why Broder ran into such difficulties with the Model S.
Source: The New York Times