Tesla Model S Range Exceeds Even Tesla's Expecations

By · May 11, 2012

Graph 1

Tesla compares the range of the Model S to the Roadster at constant speeds under the 2-cycle EPA test procedure.

When equipped with the 85-kWh lithium-ion battery pack, the 2012 Tesla Model S returns "greater than 300 miles using the 2-cycle EPA test procedure," according to Tesla chief executive officer Elon Musk. For comparison, Tesla posted back in 2008 that its Roadster boasted 244 miles of range using the same 2-cycle EPA procedure.

Recently, Tesla Motors posted data of its independent testing of the Model S. According to Tesla, the 85-kWh version of the Model S is "expected to achieve 250-350 miles of range during constant-speed highway driving at 50-70 mph," provided that these conditions are met: constant speed, flat ground, no wind, climate control OFF, 300 pounds of vehicle load, windows up, sunroof closed, tires inflated to recommended pressures, battery pack less than one year old.

Graph 2

Tesla compares the energy consumption of the Model S to the Roadster at constant speeds under the 2-cycle EPA test procedure.

Tesla also states that at "slower speeds" the range of the Model S could possibly exceed 400 miles. In fact, Tesla Motors is "planning a prize for the first customer that actually drives over 400 miles on a single charge."

But don't expect the Model S to be officially rated at 300-plus miles. Tesla openly admits that under the EPA's current 5-cycle test procedure, the 85-kWh Model S should achieve a range of approximately 265 miles. But even at 265 miles, the Model S would, according to Tesla, set a range record for a production electric vehicle.

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