Tesla Model S Declared Car Of The Year By Motor Trend
The new Tesla Model S has received a extraordinary accolade: it is the first electric car to win Motor Trend's prestigious Car of the Year award.
(Tesla Model S, according to Motor Trend)
At its core, the Tesla Model S is simply a damned good car you happen to plug in to refuel.
Tesla claims it has 250 patents covering the Model S, and more pending. The body is light, thanks to its all-aluminum construction, yet strong and stiff. The front and rear suspension are also mostly aluminum. At the rear are extruded rear suspension links that provide the strength of forgings at much lower cost, while up front are hollow-cast front knuckles that weigh 25 percent less than a conventional knuckle of similar strength.
The electric motor sits between the rear wheels, contributing greatly to the 47/53-percent front/rear weight distribution. The motor is an AC-induction type, the basic principles of which were demonstrated in the 1880s by Nikola Tesla himself, and it doesn't need expensive rare earth metals.
Tesla offers three lithium-ion battery packs for the Model S -- 40-kW-hr, 60-kW-hr, and 85-kW-hr -- that are claimed to provide ranges of 140, 200, and 265 miles, respectively. The base 85-kW-hr powertrain delivers a stout 362 hp and 325 lb-ft of torque, while the performance version makes 416 hp and 443 lb-ft.The battery packs are assembled at Tesla's plant in Fremont, California, using Panasonic cells with nickel-cobalt-aluminum cathodes. Situated under the floor, the battery pack is a stressed member that further improves torsional rigidity, and helps lower the car's center of gravity to just 17.5 inches, about the same as a Ford GT's.
Science fiction writers did not create the idea of electric cars; electric vehicles of different types (2,3 and 4 wheels) were in use in Europe in the late 19th century. Electric vehicles also had a brief vogue with well-to-do buyers in large cities, who weren't bothered by their relatively short range, considering it a reasonable trade-off for quiet, odor-free operation.
In his 1894 novel A Journey in Other Worlds, however, John Jacob Astor IV painted the following utopian picture of a transportation system that used electric phaetons which may seem quaint today, particularly given the speed and handling characteristics of the Tesla Model S:
"The electric phaetons, as those for high speed are called, have three and four wheels, and weigh, including battery and motor, five hundred to four thousand pounds. With hollow but immensely strong galvanically treated aluminum frames and pneumatic or cushion tires, they run at thirty-five and forty miles an hour on country roads, and attain a speed over forty on city streets, and can maintain this rate without recharging for several days. They can therefore roam over the roads of the entire hemisphere, from the fertile valley of the Peace and grey shores of Hudson Bay, to beautiful Lake Nicaragua, the River Plate, and Patagonia, improving man by bringing him close to Nature, while they combine the sensations of coasting with the interest of seeing the country well...
"...we feel that `Excelsior!' is indeed our motto."
Be sure to read the full review at Motor Trend, then head over to Tesla and reserve your Tesla Model S!
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/13/2012)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )
Related News Stories -
Vantablack BMW X6 Is Douglas Adams Approved
'It's so... black!' said Ford Prefect. - Douglas Adams, 1980.
Jet-Powered Hoverboard Works!
L'audace, l'audace, toujours l'audace!
Nobe 3-Wheel Electric Vehicle Parking Like I, Robot
Spidercar, Spidercar, does whatever a spidercar does.
Mojipic Smart Voice Vehicle Emojis
KITT, your move!
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Entire Planet Modeled In New MS Flight Sim
'CIC uses [it] to keep track of every bit of spatial information that it owns...'
FlyZoo Robot Hotel By Alibaba
'... hotels that specialized in non-human service.'
Implanted Memories Provide Songs To Birds
Finches can't tell the difference.
Robot Tuna Swims As Fast As Nature's Tuna
'With one fluid motion, it surged forward, plunged, and was gone.'
Shapeshifter Robot Is Comprised Of Cobots
'Its lines wavered, flowed, and then painfully reformed. For an interval, the device struggled with itself...'
Google Commits To Fighting Deepfakes
'The program raced up the screen one scan line at a time, subtly smoothing, deleting and coloring.'
China Accused Of Harvesting Organs From Unwanted Groups
'The death penalty was his immortality, and he would vote the death penalty for any crime at all.'
Osmiridium Sounds Like Science Fiction (But It's Not!)
I can't resist science-fictional elements. Especially when they're real.
When Will We See The First Space Hotel?
'The heart of it was a vast hexagonal structure of welded metal, ten miles across...'
SpaceX Starhopper Has Flash Gordon Style
SpaceX makes retro cool spacecraft.
Mindar The Robot Buddhist Priest Offers A Blessing
'Not working is the hardest work of all.'
Does Your Company Need A 'Chief Dreamer'?
As far as the future is concerned 'they're the only experts we have'.
Helios Modular Touch Screen Wall Lights
'The walls and ceiling bore an irregular spacing of illuminum tiles...'
Zephyr Solar-Electric Stratospheric Drone
'The planes flew continuously, twenty-four hours a day...'
Robot Hummingbird Hovers Biomimetically
'With a buzz... it started out on its journey.'
Harvest Water From Air With Sunlight
'The atmosphere yielded its moisture with reluctance.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories