Last night while you were sleeping, Tesla were busy releasing a new edition of the Model S. The new, cheaper Model S 60, features a smaller 60 kWh battery that still achieves 400 kilometres in range and a 5.8 second time for 0-100kph acceleration.
What you need to know about the Model S 60 is that deep inside the body lives a 75 kWh battery and an additional 80km of range can be unlocked with an over-the-air software upgrade. This range extension equates to an increase of around 19% in range making a total of 480km, but wil set you back a pretty severe $13,500, more than some spend on a whole new car.
Its really smart business to ship one car, with one battery and manage the price unlock via software, this is after all something Intel experimented with years ago with processor core unlocks. There is one significant difference when it comes to this model applied to an electric car. You’re essentially carrying around the additional weight of a 75kWh battery, but are locked out of using that power. The Tesla is certainly not short on power, so you’re unlikely to feel it day to day, and perhaps you’re financial circumstances change during ownership and then having the ability to upgrade your current car, rather than replace it, is an inviting prospect.
The upside of the Model S 60 is the lower price, state dependent thanks to inconsistent registration and stamp duty rates. If you hit buy today, you’d be in your Tesla in October and drive away for A$109,465 if you live in the ACT. Victorians can get into a Model S for A$114,385 and NSW for a similar A$113,104. The most expensive starting price is WA at A$116,148, but lets be honest, without the supercharger network of the east coast, there’s going to be less Tesla owners.
The Model S 60 is a single electric motor power train and rear wheel drive, but with some more room in your wallet, you can upgrade many options like all-wheel drive, faster charging (81km/ph vs 54km/ph), better sound and air suspension. There’s also a premium upgrade package that features the Bioweapon defense mode, famously explained by Tesla founder Elon Musk. This removes 99.97% of pollution and allergens, keeping those pesky fuel-guzzling commuters away from you.
Upgrades to the Model S can quickly take you from just over one hundred thousand Aussie dollars, to double that, but the price of the 60 is far more approachable for anyone playing in the luxury car market. Please, whatever you do, don’t buy a Tesla without Autopilot, it’s $3,800 if you grab it at the time you order, but again your car will ship with the hardware and this can be unlocked later with an update and by letting A$4,500 travel through the air to Tesla.
More information, or to order your Tesla Model S 60, head over to Tesla Motors.