Forums

The Bottom Line

The Bottom Line

So there's clearly some controversy over the price list that's been released. Some people aren't completely satisfied with the way the Performance version price was listed, some are dissatisfied with the price of the Signature version. Some on the other hand have no issues, and see this pricing as in line with competitive vehicles, or justified by the advanced engineering and design of the Model S.

So what's the bottom line for you? Will you keep your reservation, or cancel it?

After having a bit of time to cool down and think about this I believe I will keep my reservation. I love the car just as much as ever. I'm not exactly thrilled with the price structure, but I can live with it.

Mycroft | December 22, 2011

Definitely keeping it! Taking EV technology into consideration, IMO, the Model S with performance package will be the best car on the road!

mscottring | December 22, 2011

Mycroft - My wife and I own too many cars. Not long ago we purchased a Nissan Leaf, for purely selfish reasons. But since that purchase, and my visit to the Tesla factory, I've actually made a commitment to rid our garage of every vehicle that burns fossil fuel. It may take some time (I need to wait for this Model S to come in) and maybe some tears (there is some sentimental value attached to a couple of these cars), but I think it's an important change to make. And hope more people will make the same decision.

Slindell | December 22, 2011

Will probably down-grade from a Sig to regular Model S, 85Kwh battery. Saves $17,000 from options I don't care about. But I'm going to wait until next week to allow some breathing room.

Too bad. I had a license plate of "Sig 353" all lined up...

Suprkar | December 22, 2011

After giving it serious thought I decided to cancel.

mscottring | December 22, 2011

Polera - That's really a shame. Is there any changing your mind, or have you already done it?

jackhub | December 22, 2011

My expectations were never unreasonable. I'm sticking.

DartLady S77 | December 22, 2011

As a Canadian Sig reservation holder I was expecting (and willing) to pay the $80,000 for my car. We don't get the rebate from the IRS and the recently announced Canadian (BC) rebate doesn't help me becausde the car doesn't sell through a dealership in Canada (yet the Roadster qualifies....go figure).

The pricing released pushes my car to: Sig $97,425 Perf $107,425
(no rear facing seats, body colour roof)

Now add 13% tax and I need to come up with an additional $70k or $81,400 (Perf). Am I feeling the Tesla love? Not one bit! I was lead to believe that my $40k was half the price of the car, but now the car costs the same as a Roadster....Even if I go down to a P model and lose the stereo, go microfibre, 19`aero wheels and no parcel shelf, the price still requires another $60k.

Seriously considering cancelling, though it breaks my heart.

David M. | December 22, 2011

I'm in for now. The option pricing didn't break the camel's back. The only thing that might break it is if the integration of the infotainment screen winds up looking the same as it did on Oct. 1st. I've been told to hang in there because final changes to the dashboard are coming. Let's see if the 17 inch screen winds up looking more integrated in the final design (as it did in the Alpha).

Looking at the questions posted by reservation holders, it appears as though Tesla hasn't been clear enough about some of the technical details of the car. They need to do a better job at that going forward. For instance:
- How adequate is a 10kwh charger? Do you really need the 2nd charger? and why? What is the max circuit to install for a 10kwh charger?
- Are the twin chargers required for using the supercharging stations? How many years will it be before they show up on the east coast? How come the lesser batteries can't use them?
- What is the mileage rating on the performance tires? 10K, 15K, more?
- If you don't get the turn by turn Nav pkg, can you still use Google Navigation with turn by turn directions?
- Is the USB just for powering devices, or can it act as an external hard drive?
- How will the 3G or 4G connectivity work? Is there a fee after some initial period of time? Etc.
- and more.

Bottom line. Having this many unknowns for customers committing to such a large purchase should be undesirable to Tesla. Here's what happens: People commit to the purchase, then have all these unanswered questions, then they reason what the answer should be, then later they find out that Tesla has a completely different answer, and this all leads to disappointment. (ie. Signature reservation holders, etc.)

GoTeslaChicago | December 22, 2011

I knew from the day that Elon announced the sport version, that I wanted it bad, but probably couldn't afford it.

Now that pricing is out, I can't say that there are any great surprises, considering utility versus the extra cost of the options. The one exception is the $3,750 for the tech package, as many of those items I sort of expected in the base. I think this was their way of keeping the base at 49,900, but is really a disguised price increase. I have no quibble with that either, as it is extremely hard to hold the line on prices these days.

Bottom line, I love the Tesla Model S. Just made my 3rd trip to the Oakbrook, IL showroom, and saw the Beta in Shasta Pearl White. It looks even more beautiful than when I went last month and saw the Signature Red Beta.

I will get a Model S, no matter what. The only question is how much more than the base model will I be able to afford (rationalize).

Leofingal | December 22, 2011

I also view the tech package as the price increase they needed to get to their target margins. While some of this was not going to be included in the base (ie auto tinting side mirrors, and even turn by turn on board navigation -explicitly stated some time back), other things such as xenon headlights, and the RF-ID entry were probably expected in the base price. Not a deal breaker, but a little disappointing. Thankfully they were able to hold the line on the base price.

Jerry | December 22, 2011

Very torn. Lots of options on Sig that I would do without. Need to sleep on it, but going back and forth between canceling altogether and just sucking it up. Either way, you never get lost goodwill back. This is from one of the earliest Roadster owners and very early Sig holders

Robert.Boston | December 22, 2011

@David M: answers to a few of your questions, at least as I understand the answers:

- How adequate is a 10kwh charger? Do you really need the 2nd charger? and why? What is the max circuit to install for a 10kwh charger?
The 10kW charger adds up to 31 mph. Use it with a 220v 40A circuit (which is only 8.8kW, but pretty standard household configuration). You'll only need the second 10kW charger if you have access to AC charging points that run 70A+.

- Are the twin chargers required for using the supercharging stations?
No. The Tesla Superchargers have 9 10kWh chargers built in and feed DC power directly into the car, bypassing your internal chargers.

How many years will it be before they show up on the east coast?
Unclear, but Tesla DC staff said that a Supercharger network between DC and Boston is in planning.

How come the lesser batteries can't use them?
The 40kW batteries take up charge more slowly than the larger batteries: fewer cells. Tesla has said that the 100k mile battery warranty couldn't hold up if the 40kW battery was frequently supercharged. Board posters on TMC generally consider this a very lame rationale and are hoping that Tesla finds a way to ratchet down the current from the Supercharger to avoid frying the 40kW batteries.

- If you don't get the turn by turn Nav pkg, can you still use Google Navigation with turn by turn directions?
You can get whatever you can get from the internet, including Google Maps. Google Maps doesn't include real-time turn-by-turn, though.

Jason S | December 22, 2011

Interestingly since I'm only a Sig reservation holder (never seriously considered getting two reservations then switch based on later info) I'm now wondering if I should upgrade to the top of the line performance.

In for a penny in for a pound, so to speak. Breaking the $100k price is a bit of a shocker for me though; that's serious money for a guy who has never spent more than $30k on a car, even if it is just 10-15% more than the Sig cost.

stephen.kamichik | December 22, 2011

I have to wait for Canadian pricing before I decide whether to buy the car or not.

XrstalLens | December 22, 2011

The 10kW charger adds up to 31 mph.
Just to clarify this statement (since mph usually refers to the speed of a vehicle), what that means the 10 kW charger can add approximately 31 miles of range to the battery per hour of charging time.

Doing the math, that means a full charge (from empty) for each of the batteries using a 10 kW charger is:

  • 40 kWh: just over 5 hours
  • 60 kWh: 7.5 hours
  • 85 kWh: just under 10 hours

The 20 kW charger halves these times:

  • 40 kWh: 2.5 hours
  • 60 kWh: just under 4 hours
  • 85 kWh: just under 5 hours

This assumes, in both cases, that your charging circuit can provide the maximum capability. For a 10 kW charger that means your circuit is 41 amps, and for a 20 kW charger it needs to be 83 amps. Anything less than that will reduce charging time accordingly.

Basically, if you cannot put in a charging circuit bigger than 40 amps then there is no need to purchase the twin chargers (other than future proofing).

P.S. Single-phase circuits in U.S. homes are 240V, not 220V. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Split_phase.

Larry Chanin | December 22, 2011

"What is the mileage rating on the performance tires? 10K, 15K, more?"

Hi David,

On the Tesla Motors Club forum folks are estimating nominal range to be between 7K and 20K miles depending on driving style. I'm guessing at best this is half the life expectancy of the standard tires. Replacement performance tires of the appropriate size can be had for as little as about $800 for four in a close-out deal to over $1800 for four run flat tires.

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/TireSearchResults.jsp?skipOver=true&width=...

Larry

kevjo | December 22, 2011

We're still in for the base model. I too was a little vexed by the way extras were packaged and priced.

But I keep reminding myself they're starting an automotive company from scratch, it's not an easy thing to do and yes, they're going to screw things up once in a while.

Never in my life have I been so excited by a car. If you are thinking of canceling your order I urge you to sleep on it. There are bound to be changes.

mikeadams | December 22, 2011

Made my reservation a couple months ago. Keeping my reservation. I am getting the base 40kwh model with a few options added. I already expected that there may either rise the base price or considerable cost for the options, so was planning on spending $55-60k in the first place. Was not expecting the difference in 0-60 time though. Was hoping that by the pack weighing a few hundred pounds less that it might not be any slower at accelerating. Although a little disappointed, still can't think of another car that I would want more at this price point.

David M. | December 22, 2011

@Larry - thanks for the info on the tires. Just made a decision to stick with the standard wheels.
@Robert.Boston - Thanks for all the other info. I guess you need to install a 50A circuit so it can operate at 80% or 42A max. Google maps with Nav is a great android app. Been using it for a long time. It's better than Garmin or Tom Tom. Best of all, upgrades are free. You don't need to purchase a Maps Dvd every year. If the infotainment system is running an Android OS, you can download Google Maps with Navigation, unless Tesla blocks it somehow. The built in navigation on my 2003 Lexus is useless because I refuse to pay $200 every year for an updated DVD.

Discoducky | December 22, 2011

Giving up on your reservation now is just silly unless you really need your money; TM will provide a full refund regardless of when you decide. Waiting until all the information is available is essentially free outside of the opportunity cost of $5K. If you are Sig holder and are worried about a few thousand dollars in options then downgrade and put that money in TSLA stock and make it back.

Sorry, but it's ridiculous given the context of what TM is doing to the automotive industry. If you can't see this then you may not appreciate owning an an industry first automobile. Sorry, but there is much more at stake in the macrocosm.

mscottring | December 22, 2011

Disco - What additional information are we waiting for?

Discoducky | December 22, 2011

The countless other standard features that TM didn't mention. There are so many. Just look at edmunds.com at all the standard features on the 5/7 series or A4/6/8. We still have so much to learn. I don't think there will be any "deal breakers" left to learn, but "death by a thousand cuts" is certainly still on the table.

Not to mention the crash safety or being able to drive the sedan that makes no sound, has crazy cargo space and is oil free. We've just seen the tip of the iceberg so far.

Larry Chanin | December 22, 2011

Bottom line I'm still in.

I had been debating with with myself about upgrading to a Signature. Now that I have the pricing I'm leaning toward continuing with my General Production reservation and loading it up to approximate a Signature. As much as getting the Si$gnature appeals to me, going with the Standard model saves me $4,000-$5,000 and provides me with the flexibility to opt out of a few options that I might never use. I also get to invest the extra $35,000 until I need it for the car.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that Tesla added a manual sunshade to the panoramic roof and priced such a large roof at a reasonable $1,500. Living in Florida I had initially eliminated the panoramic roof from consideration due to the absence of the shade. Now I am seriously considering it.

Living in a warm climate the standard microfibre interior had appeal over leather, but then when I realized they only offered a black interior I was sort of left scratching my head regarding the wisdom of only offering that single color. I guess I'll be forced to spend an extra $1,500 to upgrade to leather just to obtain color selections.

I'm not interested in performance options, but I love the look of the turbine wheels. The $3,500 price is steep to upgrade to the 21" performance tires. Besides the price I am concerned about the loss in driving comfort and the reduction in tire life. By the way, does anyone know whether upgrading to the Air Suspension might aid in improving the driving comfort of using low profile sport tires? Replacing these performance tires could be a moderately expensive recurring annual expense. So far Tesla has made no provisions for a spare tire. Perhaps they should offer the option of upgrading to run flat tires.

Right now I'm leaning away from getting the second on-board charger for $1,500. I'm thinking that I'd probably would rarely, if ever need it.

Larry

mscottring | December 22, 2011

Disco - I see your point. But read though Volkers post on that other thread more carefully. This is part of his point in that post, he's asking Tesla to provide a complete list of standard features. I'm frankly a little shocked that they posted the price list for the options without posting the list of standard features first, to be honest with you. The reaction to the options price list might have been completely different had they done so. As I said earlier, this was just badly handled. Someone at TM didn't do their homework, and Elon should be a bit peeved about it. I know I would be if I were in his shoes.

mscottring | December 22, 2011

Disco - As a side note, when I contacted Tesla with regard to the price question on the Performance model, I also asked them to provide a breakdown of what standard equipment comes on the base model at the base price. This is the answer I received from Tesla via email:

"I don’t have a standard list that is finalized yet as what we posted was what we knew would be optional and standard options on the premium models. Over the next few weeks we will have more and more information that comes standard on the Model S."

Discoducky | December 22, 2011

I agree, but think they have made a business decision to divulge as much as they can as soon as they can. I agree with their delivery thus far and feel that they are doing the best they can with the position they are in and the economy they are delivering to.

They know the worlds eyes are on them. They know they need to show progress every month now. They know they want to be better than Fisker or any other car. They want to deliver what they promised and at the end of day they are a publicly traded company and as such should be doing what is best for their shareholders.

As a shareholder I agree with the limited announcement of options as it provides a smoother path to market. We, on the forums, are not in the majority of shareholders. We want information faster than a good business minded company can deliver. TM, as a company, is on a good path and they want to keep the good information flowing. The options pricing is good and has been good from them publicly.

Mycroft | December 22, 2011

@Larry: "does anyone know whether upgrading to the Air Suspension might aid in improving the driving comfort of using low profile sport tires? "

That's one of the many things we don't know yet.

Mark2131@CA-US | December 22, 2011

I'm in. Pricing won't change that.

BUT... I'm thinking rather than pay $20K on all of the options available, I will probably put solar panels on my roof. Spending the money on options is just massaging my ego. Spending it on solar panels will actually, eventually come back to me.

Mark

Brant | December 22, 2011

I was not surprised by the pricing. Pretty much in line with what was published/described by Tesla and their employees. I am keeping my reservation and counting the days to get my car.

David70 | December 22, 2011

The only thing that surprised me was the Tech package. Assuming I can afford the features I want when I have to make the order (depending on what TSLA stock does by then) I'll want the package.

Other musts

1) 85 kW-hr pack
2) adjustable air suspension
3) Metallic paint (not that important, but not that expensive

4) Aerodynamics wheels (but that might be possible as a later upgrade)

5) Twin chargers (probably not that important)

6) Rest don't care about or definitely don't want

toto_48313 | December 22, 2011

I may move from sig to general prod, but keep a spot in the delivery line for sure, until the next news release.

TonyF | December 22, 2011

I made my reservation for a general production 'P' model S in August of 2009 and have anxiously awaiting delivery for more than 2 years. My mandatory options from the beginning were the 60Kwh battery and the Pano roof. I have several 'maybe' options but since the 60Kwh battery cars won't be manufactured until autumn of next year, I will have plenty of time to think about which 'maybe' options I will settle on. There was nothing in their pricing of options that would make me cancel my reservation. I remain committed to the purchase of a vehicle which will change the automotive industry forever.

For the Sig reservation holders, I feel that Tesla can do a lot of things to make the $3.5K premium you paid worth it. Think of 'first class' on a plane flight. Or gold members at your favorite hotel. There are many ways that Tesla can make you feel special. What if Sig Owners get a higher level of customer service whenever you call or bring your car in? Or being eligible for a longer bumper-to-bumper warranty than the 'P' owners can get? I think there are countless ways Tesla can make you feel that premium was well spent. Give them a chance.

Discoducky | December 22, 2011

@TonyF, well said, a coworker stood in line for over 6 hours to get the first iPhone, he dropped it and broke it a week later, took it in and they replaced it for free. When he couldn't get great reception on AT&T's Edge network he got discounts from ma bell herself just to keep the early adopters happy. I believe TM will do right by the Sig holders.

TM should realize that if Sig holder put the difference ($35K into TSLA stock) it would be worth quite a bit more (about ~20% depending on when they bought or if they sold since).

dborn @nsw.au | December 22, 2011

I am concerned with the likelyt international pricing and probably will not get the sig. Still want the85 battery, but only because it will decrease in capacity over time and I mean to keep the car for a long time. I dont need a lot of the options and can probably save myself $10000 . I did want the red but not the white upholstery, so am happy to sacrifice the badges. Makes no sense for performance tires. In Australia they can run to $300 each over and above regular hard compound tires. Love electric cars and the ability to tell the camel jockeys what to do with themselves and their oil. I will be doing minimal freeway driving as I am retired and hope this is my last car.

JoeFee | December 22, 2011

I was planning on a 160 with 10 to 20K in options so my reaction to the pricing was about in line. In fact, I thought the sport pricing was fair for 4.4 super car. Since the 160 has been "dumbed down" it forces me to the higher end, I expected more from Elon and TSLA. So now if I add another 20K to my original price expectation, I get to 92,190 after rebates (Fed + CA $2,500). Bottom line is: I will still buy but I am forced up the battery chain which does not make me feel good as a customer but does as a shareholder (I think the average selling price will be >80K for all models in 2012-13).

O well, I may have to get a part time job to raise the extra money ... looking pretty cool to roll up to my Walmart greeter job in a Sport M. S. !!!

JoeFee | December 22, 2011

What the .... I may stand corrected. The 5K in options is required to add and is NOT included in the base price of the Sport. So 10K delta to expectations .... price is not "fair."

{mscottring | DECEMBER 22, 2011 NEW
This is the official answer I just received from Tesla via email:

"You are correct, the Price of the Model S Performance comes out to $84,900 with the required packaging."}

This is starting to look like amateur hour ... Marketing is not looking near as good as the car. Elon fix this now! See

http://www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/tesla-you-need-fight-these-fires...

http://www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/model-s-performance-price-question

mscottring | December 22, 2011

joe - Keep in mind that "required packaging" is referred to as "additional STANDARD equipment". What? If it's standard then why am I paying for it?

Tim10 | December 22, 2011

Unfortunatley I had to drop my Canada signature reservation. I'm back in the general line now. The price announcement made it clear that it was beyond what I could afford. As opposed to waiting and dropping later I thought it was best to do it now and give Tesla the most time to offer to someone else.

mscottring | December 22, 2011

Tim10 - You're still going to get a great car though.

TikiMan | December 22, 2011

For me personally, I am banking on my state (CA) new zero emission single occupancy HOV lane law, as a HUGE factor of the price point. I need a fully electric vehicle with at least a good 200+ mile range, to get back years of my life wasted sitting in gridlock traffic. While some spend thousands on gym memberships, and others for special diets, vitamins, etc, for their health, I am of the FIRM belief that sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic takes years off your life.

So, for me personally the extra money for this vehicle is an investment in my health and longevity, never mind, pease of mind, etc and so on.

Otherwise, I will not deny, if I didn't have to commute SO far in the worlds worst traffic (Los Angeles), I might not consider spending as much as a $100k for this vehicle. I am sure we all have our reasons for buying the Model S... be it, to save the planet, snub the gas pump, have the latest thing, be the first to own it, or save your own personal sanity, we are all obviously willing to spend what we have to, to own one.

Volker.Berlin | December 23, 2011

Discoducky, your comments in this thread are spot on IMO. All of us are impatiently waiting to finally get the car of our dreams, but it is much more sensible to play it cool until we actually know what we are talking about.

Unfortunately, few people see the whole picture. That's a well-known fact and therefore it's still Tesla, not the impatient customers, who's to blame for uproar that entailed the publishing of the long-awaited but obviously not entirely well-prepared "Options & Pricing" page. The public reaction really should have been foreseeable and taken care of in advance by Tesla.

Tim10 | December 23, 2011

Msocttring, yes still expecting to get a model s however will depend on final Canadian pricing, clarification of what standard options are included and a test drive. If the drive is anything like the roadster I'm sure a quick test drive will remove any lingering doubts when it comes time to sign. Just not willing to spend over 100k for a car at this point in my life.

gjunky | December 23, 2011

I will most likely drop my P-reservation although I agree with the earlier comments and will wait and give TM a chance to set things right.

I was in for a base 40Kwh model. This is already more than I would spend on any car normally but as most of you, I think there is a good reason to spend the money on this particular car.

However, after the option pricing, my biggest concerns are the change in performance numbers, warranty and use of the charging network for the 40Kwh version.

I know there are fewer cells in the small battery pack but I still don't see why this would have to limit the performance or longevity of the battery nor the use of the charging network.
Is TM really going to build a charging network that no other electric car can use and then also exclude their own base model? That just sounds like a crazy decision to me.

I was a little shocked about the Tech package as well although I might be able to get over that. I can't afford a larger battery pack or most (any) of the options listed. The 50K car is what I was looking for but now it seems that it will become a dumbed down version with limited charging and performance capabilities.

Very disappointed...

mscottring | December 23, 2011

Volker - Again you've taken the words right out of my mouth.

rdgreene | December 23, 2011

I'm not super happy about the size of the Signature vs. non-Sig differential (especially since the Sig package has options I wouldn't have picked which increases the differential for me). However, for now, I'll sit on my Sig reservation -- I guess I am willing to pay $8k more to not be in the 2013 delivery pile. At the very least, I'm not willing to give up my space until I've actually test driven a car. And that will be the real test!

Jason S | December 23, 2011

Two things bug me about the Signature versus Production price differential, and both come down to TM not meeting expectations.

First, the Sig was originally thought of as a fully loaded car with few, if any, options. But after looking at the options and pricing page, it is clear it is merely priced fully loaded with options to downgrade. Clear incentive to keep all the options, but having the 'option' to downgrade makes you wonder about the whole point of streamlining the first 1000 cars.

Second, after putting 8x the reserve deposit down I don't think anybody expected to *pay more* than an equivalently optioned production car. The expectation may have been just a little badging and a special color (like paint shops don't exist) but paying more to get the same stuff wasn't really part of the expectations.

Jason S | December 23, 2011

Correcting myself: the Sig actually has few downgrade options -- wheels and paint. Everything else appears standard, so that WILL streamline production quite a bit.

So I guess it comes down to a larger deposit wasn't the only thing getting the Sig -- it is also paying more for the same options. Bottom line: I'm sitting tight for now. Interior specifics will make or break it now, I think.

Larry Chanin | December 23, 2011

Hi Folks,

I know that a number of you are disappointed by certain issues, but before doing anything in the heat of the moment that might be difficult to reverse, please read this posting which which I believe does a good job of putting things in perspective.

Visit Putting Everything into Perspective

Larry

mscottring | December 23, 2011

Read it. Changes nothing for me. The car is great, the company messed up. Before they open the system for ordering my hope is they will make some corrections.

Larry Chanin | December 23, 2011

I don't disagree about the need for more clarity. My point only is that folks should avoid knee jerk reactions that they may regret later. It wouldn't hurt to focus on the entire donut not the just the hole.

Happy Holidays,

Larry

Pages