Posted by Brian @ 11:20 pm on November 9th 2017

Five years with my Tesla Model S

It’s hard to believe that I’m coming up on my five year anniversary with my Tesla Model S. The car still feels brand new to me. Here’s what it’s been like:

What range anxiety?

It’s been years since I’ve worried about range. Tesla’s supercharger and destination charging network is awesome. I just know I’ll always make it to where I’m going. I’ve driven to Las Vegas, San Francisco, Los Angeles a couple times, deep northwest Canada, and all over Oregon and Washington. That’s as far as I’d ever want to go in a car.

And I love road trips. I probably gained an appreciation for them from my grandfather. He used to take epic journeys. He and his wife would power through a thousand miles in one brutal day. When I was a kid I went with them, and they just wouldn’t stop. The guy was a warrior.

Well, you can’t do that in a Tesla. And I’m glad. I’ve come to really appreciate the need to stop every three or four hours and take a break while the car charges. It’s generally when I want a meal anyway. The forced stops leave me much more rested when I reach my destination.

Goodbye gas station lines

A few things I don’t miss: the stench of gasoline coming out of the pump. Waiting in line at a gas station. Touching fuel nozzles. Paying $80 to fill up my car several times a month. Wasting all that time.

My Tesla is so cheap to charge up that I didn’t even notice an increase in the power bill. I just plug it in every night like my mobile phone and it’s always ready in the morning. I’ve never even come remotely close to running the battery down driving around town.

Hello reliability

I love not having to worry about oil changes, transmission fluid, spark plugs, gaskets, exhaust systems — all the myriad of things that go wrong with old school gas burners. I’m coming up on 60,000 miles on my Model S. I remember well how repair bills started to come in on my BMW M3 when I pushed past 50,000 miles. Nothing like that on my Tesla. And don’t get me started about my Mercedes bills. Zowie those are expensive.

The acceleration never gets old

This car just keeps making me smile when I drive. The off the line acceleration is unmatched. The handling is incredible. Sure, it’s no single seat racecar, but wow can it handle. Fewer people these days try to race me — they’ve learned that a Tesla cannot be beaten off the line — but it’s still fun when someone tries.

That 17″ screen is incredibly useful

I use the real time traffic map frequently. I have no idea how much time I’ve saved with it, but it is a lot of time. It’s become second nature to look down at a stoplight and confirm I’m on the fastest route.

Just today I saw some traffic on Interstate 5 and a quick glance at the monitor showed me the traffic went well past my exit. I saved many minutes getting off early – so much time that I was able to squeeze in an extra errand before my appointment.

Streaming music is sublime

I love being able to ask the car to play anything from Tangerine Dream to Monty Python. On long trips I stream podcasts like The Moth, listen to endless comedy, and play all kinds of favorites.

Storage storage storage

I still find it incredible how much can be fit into this car. I’ve gone car camping and road tripping with three, stuffed the car with the result of huge shopping sprees that would never have fit in a sedan.

The negative stuff

I shouldn’t have gotten metallic paint.

If, purely hypothetically, an unlicensed driver merges directly into your car, the repairs will take six weeks.

It turns out that if you punch it at every single stoplight you burn through tires remarkably fast.

I’m trying to think of other things, but I just can’t. The car is simply amazing. It’s amazing in that “I can’t imagine going back” way that I feel about iPhones and the Internet.

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