Auto pilot, 100% Electric, zero emissions, ground breaking technology: all great reasons why we will buy a Tesla.
I had the opportunity to participate in a test drive of a Tesla S last week in Geneva. It is very impressive. The linear acceleration blew me away; the comfort and hold of the car at speed, a direct consequence of its low and balanced centre of gravity, was exceptional.
However I also discovered the car is all-wheel drive, using two electric motors with energy recuperation when not “driving” the wheels. There is, in effect, a type of engine braking when not accelerating, similar to dropping down a gear when descending a hill to slow the traditional car down. This saves braking and therefore the brake pads last longer – I was told up to 3x the life of other cars.
This showed me just how well this car has been thought out; it’s not just about performance or ecology, but when combined with the lower fuel costs, 70% fewer “moving” parts and the tax breaks an electric car offers, Tesla adds up to significantly lower running costs.
That, I believe is the real reason Tesla will win; not simply the obvious “environmental” reason, nor the powerful vision of Elon Musk, but for the supporting benefits that the technology has facilitated. I call this the brand buttressing effect of those apparently peripheral benefits that are actually a key reason to buy.