Blogging the Trip Along the WayNow that there are many relatively affordable models of electric cars available, lots of people are sitting in the sideline and trying to figure out if they should take the plunge now or later. Controlled reviews and spec sheets are great to get an idea, but real-world experiences tend to be most convincing, in my opinion. You have real-world experiences that are more 'average', like Jeffrey Kaffee's experience with his Chevrolet Volt, and some are more extreme, trying to push the vehicle to see what it can do and this showing people that "if it can do that, it should be fine for my every-day use". Motor Trend's road trip from Los Angeles to Las Vegas on 1 charge and the father & son team who drove 400 miles on 1 charge fall in the latter category, and so does Peter, Tina, and Luba's road trip around the U.S. in an 85kWh Tesla Model S.
Few people will need to drive that much in their Tesla EV, but it's good to know that you can if you really need to (and it'll be much easier over time as Superchargers pop up all around the country).
The interesting part is that they are blogging the trip as it happens, and as of today, they're on day 6 in their writings (it's not always published quite in real time, but that doesn't really change things). The best place to start on their website is the About Us page, which gives some background.
One of the things that is important to get out of the way is that while they are picking up their Tesla in California and driving it back to the East Coast, that's not required. Peter writes:
Why do you have to go to California to pick it up?/So everybody has to pick up their cars out west?
Yes, Tesla has a dealer near me, it’s in Washington DC, about 20 miles from my house in Maryland. Tesla would also be happy to deliver my car where ever I want (my house, my office, my local OPEC office) as part of the standard delivery fee. This trip is for pure fun. It is also to prove to myself (and others) that I can sell my regular old car and completely switch over to an all electric. If I can drive it back from the west coast without problems, then there isn’t a reason to ever need my old gasoline-powered car again!
Why and when did you order your car?
Back in 2008/2009 I had already installed a solar system on my house and I wanted to take the next step, moving to an electric car (EV). I looked around and found that if I wanted an EV, I could buy a Tesla Roadster (too impractical for my day to day life storage wise) or build my own. I quickly set aside the idea of building my own as Tesla announced that they were developing a four door sedan, with great range, and it would be a BMW 5 series equivalent. The day they announced that due to customer demand they were starting to accept reservations, I was in! (for a car that still needed to be designed, a factory that itself still needed to be built, setup, and staffed). That was March 27, 2009 and I was already a little late that morning at 6am, 173 people had already beaten me there! I can’t believe that not even four years later they now have a flawless design complete, certified, a factory, and a production line that already exceeds the original desired production rates.
So if you want to follow their adventures and learn more about how the Model S does on an extended road trip, go to their website: ElectricRoadTrips.