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NHTSA Gives the Model S Best Safety Rating of Any Car In History

timothy posted 1 year,29 days | from the still-betting-on-the-mack-truck dept.

Transportation 627

cartechboy writes "Even crashing into a wall is good news nowadays for Tesla Motors. Independent testing by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has awarded the company a 5-star safety rating, not just overall, but in every subcategory. While its five-star score across the board has been attained by other vehicles (around one percent of all cars tested are capable of such a score) its ratings in individual categories are higher than any other vehicle, including larger SUVs and minivans. What's really interesting is that part of the safety rating may be because the car is electric."

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NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0, Troll)

Yahma (1004476) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620213)

Ridiculous. Because the gov't want to promote electric cars, will we now see artificially high safety ratings on electric cars to promote sales? Since when did the gov't get into the marketing business?

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (-1, Troll)

realmolo (574068) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620277)

So do you work for Ford, GM, or Chrysler?

The ratings aren't artificially high, you fucking dipshit.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620373)

Not artificially high? How come North American cars don't have amber turn signals then?

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620759)

Because we have Amber Alerts...

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (5, Funny)

tompaulco (629533) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620785)

Not artificially high? How come North American cars don't have amber turn signals then?

They are amber, you just can't tell because nobody uses them. They just give you a gentle nudge to tell you they are changing lanes.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (4, Informative)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | 1 year,29 days | (#44621015)

Because US regulations don't require them while other markets do. The Europeans and Japanese just don't bother to make market-specific taillights, they just follow the Euro regs which also meet US regs.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (5, Interesting)

jimbolauski (882977) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620825)

I would be wary of the NHTSA front crash test ratings for the Tesla. The NHTSA front crash test is a full frontal crash into a wall at 35, while the IIHS does a more real world scenario of 25% and 40% of the bumper hitting a wall at 40mph. Without a large motor in the way Tesla is able to use the whole front compartment as a crumple zone as opposed to most combustion vehicles that primary use the sides as a crumple zone. While I don't think the ratings were manipulated they are artificially high because the Tesla design is able to game the system. Unfortunately the IIHS crash test ratings have not been released yet but I can't imagine them doing as well, in the 40% test the Tesla will have lost 60% of it crumple zone while typical combustion engines will lost a little over 50%, in the 25% test Tesla will lose 75% and the combustion engine is still at a little over 50%.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620919)

How is this any different than other Rear engine design vehicles?

How is a big crumple zone bad? (5, Insightful)

sjbe (173966) | 1 year,29 days | (#44621023)

Without a large motor in the way Tesla is able to use the whole front compartment as a crumple zone as opposed to most combustion vehicles that primary use the sides as a crumple zone. While I don't think the ratings were manipulated they are artificially high because the Tesla design is able to game the system.

Explain to me exactly how having an enormous crumple zone in front of the driver is somehow a bad thing. Would you rather have an engine pushed into your lap from a frontal collision? Their is no evidence I've seen that their ratings are "artificially high". The results are what they are.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (5, Informative)

i kan reed (749298) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620313)

Or you could read the article and see that in the areas considered for the tests, many of the common safety tests wouldn't even work, they couldn't roll the car over with standard techniques, they couldn't crush the passenger compartment with a standard crusher, and they had a HUGE crumple zone.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (5, Informative)

swillden (191260) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620593)

Or you could read the article and see that in the areas considered for the tests, many of the common safety tests wouldn't even work, they couldn't roll the car over with standard techniques, they couldn't crush the passenger compartment with a standard crusher, and they had a HUGE crumple zone.

Also, for the roof crush test the crushing machine broke before the roof did.

The Tesla Model S is an extremely well-engineered machine. It's expensive, yes, but in most respects it's simply superior to equivalently-priced luxury cars. I'm really looking forward to their next generation, which is intended to be priced more mid-market (probably in the 30s).

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620611)

Also, for the roof crush test the crushing machine broke before the roof did.

That's not a good thing for safety. You need the roof to absorb energy not be rigid.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620719)

When you roll the thing over, you want it to be rigid so that it doesn't bend to intersect with your empty skull.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620779)

When you roll the thing over, you want it to be rigid so that it doesn't bend to intersect with your empty skull.

Wrong. Nothing should ever be rigid on a car ever. Otherwise the full force of the impact get transferred to your brain.

Of course that won't be a problem in your case since you lack one.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620727)

That's not a good thing for safety. You need the roof to absorb energy not be rigid.

It is when you don't want the roof collapsing and crushing your skull in. The roof is not an area you want to be a crumple zone.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620791)

Also, for the roof crush test the crushing machine broke before the roof did.

That's not a good thing for safety. You need the roof to absorb energy not be rigid.

That would be an excellent point if it were the sides of the vehicle. But we're talking about the roof. There's a reason why there's a roof crush test and not a side crush test, where the sides are tested through impacts instead.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620895)

That would be an excellent point if it were the sides of the vehicle. But we're talking about the roof.

The roof need to absorb energy too.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

thelovebus (264467) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620907)

I'm fairly certain that a roof that *doesn't* collapse in on the car's occupants during a rollover would be more of a "good thing for safety" than one which did.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620967)

I'm fairly certain that a roof that *doesn't* collapse in on the car's occupants during a rollover would be more of a "good thing for safety" than one which did.

You can have the roof absorb an impact without collapsing dumbass.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620951)

I'm no car safety engineer, but I suspect that's nonsense. If I understand modern car cabin safety engineering correctly, the whole point is to make the cabin itself very rigid, but it is surrounded by energy-absorbing crumple zones outside of it to absorb impacts. That's accomplished by having the front, end, and sides of the cars deformable. By contrast it's not exactly normal for roofs (or for that matter, the bottom of a car) to be subjected to head-on collisions. Typically roofs need to support the weight of a car if it flips over, and in that case roof deformation is *not* desirable because any reduction in the size of the cabin would lead to compression of the passengers.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620641)

Also, for the roof crush test the crushing machine broke before the roof did.

That was my favorite part of the article.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0)

Nadaka (224565) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620665)

Wasn't the next tesla vehicle going to compete against the $50k luxury SUV's?

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (2)

Rockoon (1252108) | 1 year,29 days | (#44621025)

Wasn't the next tesla vehicle going to compete against the $50k luxury SUV's?

In this case, this is the "next" vehicle that you heard about. You were either reading an old article, or read an article before the introduction of the model S.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44621027)

That's the next one, the Model X.

Supposedly they have a mass-market compact following that one, but I wouldn't be surprised if another luxury vehicle gets in the way first.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

Applekid (993327) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620943)

Or you could read the article and see that in the areas considered for the tests, many of the common safety tests wouldn't even work, they couldn't roll the car over with standard techniques, they couldn't crush the passenger compartment with a standard crusher, and they had a HUGE crumple zone.

Also, for the roof crush test the crushing machine broke before the roof did.

The Tesla Model S is an extremely well-engineered machine. It's expensive, yes, but in most respects it's simply superior to equivalently-priced luxury cars. I'm really looking forward to their next generation, which is intended to be priced more mid-market (probably in the 30s).

As the price comes down, I wouldn't expect these testing results to stay the same. The safety far exceeded the ratings by quite a bit and extremely exceeded minimums required. There is a cost to overengineering, which is likely to get trimmed when building down to a price.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

TWiTfan (2887093) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620639)

I'd be more interesting to see how it fares in the "submerged in water" test.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (4, Funny)

i kan reed (749298) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620677)

Gasoline engines are well noted for their ability to work underwater.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620721)

Gasoline engines are well noted for their ability to work underwater.

Yes they do work great submerged. All you need is a snorkel or air supply butt a gasoline engine had no problem what so ever working underwater.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

Baloroth (2370816) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620853)

Assuming it's sealed. In which case, the electric engine won't even need a snorkel.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

afidel (530433) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620999)

The batteries aren't sealed because they have to vent heat at a rate greater than you can get through passive cooling.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620725)

With a snorkle, yes.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (4, Insightful)

i kan reed (749298) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620941)

You say that as if the engine fan would keep working, spark plugs can keep firing, the engine doesn't flood(through, say, the tailpipe, or oil system), or a ton of other basic risks. All an electric motor needs to keep working is insulation to prevent shorts. Which it SHOULD have anyways.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (4, Funny)

jellomizer (103300) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620783)

I am taking that as sarcasm. However it is tough to tell with these posts, you could just be wrong.

conspiracy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620323)

but but...the govt also bought shares of GM and other American manufacturing company during the auto bailout. Why didn't they hand out free 5-stars rating then? Perhaps the government was selling short!

If you don't have any facts, or the ones that come out of your ass, go troll elsewhere.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

guytoronto (956941) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620329)

I wasn't sure if I wanted to mod you as a troll, or reply. Dammit! Now I've responded. When did the government get into the marketing business? When HASN'T the government been in the marketing business?

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1)

dmbasso (1052166) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620351)

What I'm afraid is that there will no longer be explosions when a car barely collides in movies [U+2e2e]

[Unless it is a documentary about 'accidents' like Michael Hastings'...]

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (3, Funny)

TWiTfan (2887093) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620661)

Just find some old Pintos and have every bad guy drive those.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (5, Funny)

hawguy (1600213) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620871)

What I'm afraid is that there will no longer be explosions when a car barely collides in movies [U+2e2e]

[Unless it is a documentary about 'accidents' like Michael Hastings'...]

Don't worry, movie producers will rig the cars with Tesla Coils and there will be an impressive array of electrical discharge arcs emanating from the car, incinerating everything in the vicinity.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620411)

Ridiculous. Because the gov't want to promote electric cars, will we now see artificially high safety ratings on electric cars to promote sales? Since when did the gov't get into the marketing business?

Did you get served the secret version of the articles, the one that revealed that conspiracy? The only mention of electricalness contributing to the safety rating was the speculation that the freedom of layout afforded by not having a conventional engine block allowed them to build more crumple zone into the design.

(As for governments in the marketing business, that's actually a core function: states have been asserting the legitimacy of their power through marketing since that marketing involved alleging the favor of some cryptic figures from the Sumerian pantheon, with various modifications to suit the times and advances in efficiency (the high-water mark probably being 20th century nationalism, before that Ended Badly) over time.)

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (5, Insightful)

DMiax (915735) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620429)

Do you have any evidence whatsoever that the score is undeserved?

In this case being electric helped with not having to turn off the ignition to prevent fire, have more flexibility in the positioning of elements so that more protection is added for the passenger and having so low a center of mass that they had to design a special test in order to make the car rollover since it would not do it in the normal one. Also, using spaceworthy components helped, I guess...

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (1, Funny)

interkin3tic (1469267) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620473)

There's nothing disingenuous here: a car that cannot move most of the time is much safer than one that does!

I kid, I kid. BP, I expect my check by the end of the month.

Put up or shut up (2)

sjbe (173966) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620605)

Because the gov't want to promote electric cars, will we now see artificially high safety ratings on electric cars to promote sales?

Wow, cynical much? Maybe, just maybe, the engineers at Tesla actually did a really good job. If the vehicle is subjected to the same tests and scores higher then what possible problem could you have with that? If you have evidence that the government somehow held Tesla to a different standard then by all means please share with the rest of the class. But if you are just being snarky then shut up.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (2)

jellomizer (103300) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620747)

Because the gov't want to promote electric cars?

I thought the government wanted to feed the oil industry? I am confused oh too many conspiracies.
They are promoting the electric car so I think it is part of the conspiracy so I will get a gas car just to show them, then that will feed into the oil industry conspiracy.

Re:NHTSA pushed a 5 star rating (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620763)

"Since when did the gov't get into the marketing business?"
Sometimes its marketing and sometimes its picking winners. Or should we just call them to "big to fail business".
Lets see:
the banking industry
the oil industry
the aviation industry
the gas industry
the savings and loan industry
car companies
should i go on?

Five Star (5, Funny)

camperdave (969942) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620219)

Five star safety rating across the board. Excellent! Now if only it didn't come with a five star price tag

Re:Five Star (2)

i kan reed (749298) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620333)

You invent a cheaper rechargeable battery that matches LiIon on energy density, and congratulations, you've reduced the price of a model S.

Re:Five Star (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620389)

You invent a cheaper rechargeable battery that matches LiIon on energy density, and congratulations, you've reduced the price of a model S.

If the battery was free, it would still cost twice what I paid for a decent car. This is a top end luxury vehicle, not a green vehicle.

Re:Five Star (5, Insightful)

Nadaka (224565) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620735)

Yes it is a top end luxury vehicle, and it is also the best in its class, for a lower cost than comparable vehicles. It is also green.

It just isn't a cheap family sedan. We are still at least 5 to 10 years from an affordable all electric inexpensive family car.

Re:Five Star (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44621013)

It comes in the color green? Than, yes its a green car, if you mean 'GREEN' car thats debatable... And its not even in the same galaxy if you want affordable family sedan.

Re:Five Star (4, Insightful)

hawguy (1600213) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620899)

You invent a cheaper rechargeable battery that matches LiIon on energy density, and congratulations, you've reduced the price of a model S.

If the battery was free, it would still cost twice what I paid for a decent car. This is a top end luxury vehicle, not a green vehicle.

And if were built to the same standards as your decent car, it wouldn't have received the 5 star safety rating. Everything is a tradeoff.

Re:Five Star (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620439)

Well, I think you would have reduced the manufacturing cost. If they sell as many of these as they like at the current price, it's not likely they'd reduce that price as a result of a manufacturing savings.

Re:Five Star (2)

i kan reed (749298) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620749)

Well, I'll admit the price is exactly the reason I am not buying one, but the good news is, the more they sell at this price, the stronger the secondary market will be. Electric cars have vastly lower maintenance costs with how little metal-on-metal goes on inside them, so it's forseeable for used Teslas to stay on the market longer than gas cars, thus driving down the used car price.

We'll see if that hold true 3-10 years from now.

Re:Five Star (1)

ackthpt (218170) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620403)

Five star safety rating across the board. Excellent! Now if only it didn't come with a five star price tag

Laughable - this Five Star rating is going to make it even more desirable to people to whom that price tag isn't in the fiddly minor expense classification, like leaving a tip to well mannered server.

If you like - strive to attain, it's the only way you're going to get one now.

Re:Five Star (3, Informative)

patniemeyer (444913) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620427)

The Model S starts in the $60k range and for many people who finance and factor in the gas savings monthly the payments are equivalent to that of more reasonably priced car right out the door. Also Tesla has stated that they are planning a more mass market mid-priced car in 2-3 years.

Re:Five Star (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620603)

You, sir, are really fucking bad at math.

Re:Five Star (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620831)

How is a $60k car reasonably priced? You could pick up a BMW 320i and 2700 gallons of gas at $10 a gallon. At 30MPG and a yearly average of 15k miles that's over 5 years of driving with gas at $10 a gallon. It seems even less reasonable if you consider an actual reasonable car such as an Accord, Camry or Taurus and a gas price of $5 a gallon.

Re:Five Star (5, Informative)

Loki_1929 (550940) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620599)

They're working toward that. Iteration 1 was a $110,000 sports car. Iteration 2 is a $60,000 sedan. Iteration 3 is an SUV. Iteration 4 is aiming for a $30,000 every-man's car.

Re:Five Star (4, Insightful)

mbkennel (97636) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620765)


It's a great car, but Iteration 2 is more like $80,000, and iteration 3 (SUV) will be comparable to a comparable Model S in price according to the web site. A $50k car is possible, but $30k is unlikely for quite a while.

Re:Five Star (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620965)

Actually, it sounds like an engineering fail. That's a lot of extra mass to be dragging around, a lot of extra cost to build in, and a lot of extra materiel to buy. In other words, JV. They only get away with it due to the supercar price point.

Re:Five Star (4, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620997)

Five star safety rating across the board. Excellent! Now if only it didn't come with a five star price tag

And are you of the opinion that improvements in safety haven't always come in on the high end first and then trickle down?

Airbags. ABS. That 3rd eye brake-light. Tire pressure sensors. Probably even more -- all of these things appeared first in higher-end cars and then made their way down to the rest of the models.

If anything, I expect a car at that price point to have more engineering and safety features in it. You don't just start out putting everything into the cheapest cars on the market.

Still A Toy (2, Interesting)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620235)

Don't get me wrong, the numbers are quite impressive - especially the following passage from TFA:

And just how strong is the Model S’s roof, which is secured with aerospace-grade bolts? It broke a testing machine that was pushing down on the roof with the equivalent of the weight of four cars.

... Damn, yo.

However, at a price point of $80 - 100K, it's going to remain a playtoy for people with money, not become the OMG super-car replacement for mom's $30K Volvo.

Re:Still A Toy (4, Informative)

Metabolife (961249) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620383)

Kind of how the Mercedes S class, BMW 7 series, Audio A7/A8, and any other large luxury car is a plaything for the wealthy?

Re:Still A Toy (1)

Metabolife (961249) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620405)

*Audi

Re:Still A Toy (1)

LordNimon (85072) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620471)

Yes, these are playthings for the wealthy. I make over $100K, and I can't afford any of these cars. The only people I know who drive them *are* wealthy.

Re:Still A Toy (2)

sinij (911942) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620577)

If you make over $100K you can afford one of these, you just chose not to. You are probably spending your money on other things - like large mortgage, retirement savings, kid's college, stay at home spouse... all very reasonable things.

Re:Still A Toy (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620675)

If you make over $100K you can afford one of these, you just chose not to. You are probably spending your money on other things - like large mortgage, retirement savings, kid's college, stay at home spouse... all very reasonable things.

Hookers and blow.

Re:Still A Toy (4, Informative)

TWiTfan (2887093) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620729)

In some parts of the U.S., $100K a year barely covers rent and utilities on a decent apartment.

Re:Still A Toy (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620741)

So what your trying to say is If you make over $100K and arent stupid you cant afford a car like that.

If your stupid and dont care about pension, putting the kids throgh college or paying off your mortage then you can buy a car like that.

And if you are really stupid you can buy a car like that while being poor

Re:Still A Toy (0)

HornWumpus (783565) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620613)

You could afford one. You're just not that stupid.

I bet you can find one parked in a fucking apartment complex. I know I can.

Re:Still A Toy (1)

X0563511 (793323) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620753)

What's wrong with that? It's often cheaper (and much less of a bother) to rent.

Water heater died? Well, not really my problem.

Re:Still A Toy (5, Informative)

AaronW (33736) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620823)

I make a bit over $100K and live in Silicon Valley yet I had no problem affording this car, in part due to careful money management and paying off my house early and not living beyond my means. I have met a number of other owners, and not all of them are super wealthy. One of my coworkers bought one as well. For years I poured every extra cent into paying down my mortgage since it started at over 7%. Of course it also helps that I bought before the dot com boom. I financed a majority of the car, but less than many people in order to keep investing my money.

By financing I took some of the money that I didn't spend on the loan and bought some Tesla stock when it was at $35. It's the best investment I've made. I just wish I bought more stock when I did.

I met many people at the Teslive convention a month ago. Many of the Tesla owners are not what I would consider super wealthy. Many are retired. In fact, a breakdown of what people drove before the Model S was rather interesting. Many did not drive luxury cars. My previous car was a 2006 Prius which is sitting in my driveway and hasn't been driven in two months. I'll probably sell it.

Yes, the Tesla is an expensive car. In my case, it's my midlife crisis car.

Tesla has repeatedly said that they plan to come out with a car in the $30-40K range. Their biggest problem is batteries. During the last earnings report they stated that there is simply no way to get the volume of batteries they need. They need to ramp up the production facilities and their suppliers before they can hope to meet the demand. In order to meet the demand for the lower priced car they would need to manufacture more 18650 lithium batteries than are made for all laptops combined. While there is no shortage of lithium, they need to build up production.

As it is, right now Tesla is limited in the number of cars they can sell by their suppliers. They're supply limited, not demand limited.

Re:Still A Toy (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620835)

Most of the people I know that drive those cars are not wealthy, just have a high cash-flow (or purchased used).

Wealthy people I've known (not many) have fairly ordinary cars (better than mine, but not that fancy) AND a plaything or two (fancy sports coupe, and a really well preserved really old cars, but full size high-end luxury cars though).

Re:Still A Toy (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620435)

Apparently Slashdot editors make a lot of money, considering how they have to post every single story possible about Tesla and the S.

Re:Still A Toy (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | 1 year,29 days | (#44621007)

You don't have to be able to be able to afford to buy the car in order to own stock in the company. Though if you owned enough of it early enough one could lead to the other.

Re:Still A Toy (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620469)

OMG super-car replacement for mom's $30K Volvo.

You were attempting to make the opposite point - but you summed up very nicely exactly what this has become.

they are coming out with a wagon next, too, right?

Re:Still A Toy (5, Informative)

Idarubicin (579475) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620585)

However, at a price point of $80 - 100K, it's going to remain a playtoy for people with money, not become the OMG super-car replacement for mom's $30K Volvo.

True, but it is the norm for the expensive, novel safety features of today's luxury cars to become standard on econoboxes a few years down the road. Airbags (front, then side), antilock brakes, traction control, etc. have all migrated down the market. You can bet that - particularly among carmakers whose reputations rely on safety as a marketing tool, like Volvo - there will be engineers very closely scrutinizing this car for design features that can be adapted or stolen.

More important, some of the safety benefits are pretty much inherent to the electric design. Not needing to allow for a big, solid metal engine block means that the front crumple zone can be engineered more effectively. Having heavy battery packs under the floor of the vehicle makes rollovers much more difficult. These types of benefits will be accessible to any electric design, not just the $80,000 ones.

Let me just say... (1)

neo-mkrey (948389) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620701)

That is freaking awesome!

Re:Still A Toy (2)

Loki_1929 (550940) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620717)

$60,000.

As for it being a playtoy for people with money, I supposed that'd be just like Audi, BMW, Aston Martin, Jaguar, Porsche, Shelby, and everyone else who aims for that higher end of the market.

Per Forbes, the average price of a new car is over $30,000 (http://www.forbes.com/sites/moneybuilder/2012/05/10/average-price-of-a-new-car/). Considering the number of cars selling for $12,000 - $15,000 new, that average is factoring in a lot of cars well over $30,000.

This isn't a toy for the rich and it isn't a car for everyone. It's something affordable for the upper middle class and it's nothing for the "rich". Tesla began this with a $110,000 sports car. Now they have a $60,000 sedan. In three years, they're coming out with a $30,000 every-man's car. The Roadster was a toy. The Model S is a real car for real people. It doesn't have to be a $30k Volvo to not be a "playtoy for people with money". There's a huge, huge area between the two.

Re:Still A Toy (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620821)

Don't get me wrong, the numbers are quite impressive - especially the following passage from TFA:

And just how strong is the Model S’s roof, which is secured with aerospace-grade bolts? It broke a testing machine that was pushing down on the roof with the equivalent of the weight of four cars.

... Damn, yo.

However, at a price point of $80 - 100K, it's going to remain a playtoy for people with money, not become the OMG super-car replacement for mom's $30K Volvo.

Interestingly, the EU standard for this is 7x the weight of the car, not 4x.

Sounds like the machine isn't very strong.

not a toy (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620827)

However, at a price point of $80 - 100K, it's going to remain a playtoy for people with money, not become the OMG super-car replacement for mom's $30K Volvo.

Tesla's first product (2008), the Roadster, base price of US$109K.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesla_Roadster

The base Model S (2012) starts at US$69,900 with a 60 kWh battery pack up to US$79,900 with the 85 kWh pack before any government subsidies.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesla_Model_S

Prices for the Model X (2014) have not been announced, but Tesla says it wants to have the price of the BlueStar (2016) at under US$ 40K.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesla_BlueStar

If you want cheap, but a Corolla. If want quality and innovation, someone has to be willing to bankroll the progress in technology that Tesla is trying to achieve.

Re:Still A Toy (2)

Infinityis (807294) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620837)

Actually, if you had taken that $30k for the Volvo and instead invested in Tesla stock, you could now afford a Tesla and keep your original $30k investment.

It's amusing to think about: By letting Tesla borrow $30k for a few months, they reward you with one of their cars.

Which happens to also (statisitically speaking) increase your lifespan by reducing the odds that you'll die in a car accident.

Safety rating is because... (1, Informative)

djupedal (584558) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620247)

E. Musk

The Tesla broke the roof testing jig and NHTSA had to raise their rating ceiling - another good day for TSLA :) Volvo and other car makers are shitting their trunks right now...

Re:Safety rating is because... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620649)

bwahahahahaha!

Re:Safety rating is because... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620995)

E. Musk

The Tesla broke the roof testing jig and NHTSA had to raise their rating ceiling - another good day for TSLA :) Volvo and other car makers are shitting their trunks right now...

Mind putting that in English? Who's this good for? Who's this bad for? Is any part of that sarcasm? Seriously, a lot of us don't have the slightest damn clue what "breaking the roof testing jig" means, nor what happens to the NHTSA when that occurs...

Same high rating as others (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620303)

From the article
"It means the Model S joins more established vehicles such as the 2013 Kia Optima, Honda Accord and Volvo S60 in scoring maximum marks in all impact tests."

What ratings are higher? Or is this just more Tesla love?

Re:Same high rating as others (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620873)

Wrong question; what you should be asking is, "why spend 100K, when I can buy a car with an almost equivalent safety rating for leas than half that price?

That is, if you're the sort who cares for safety ratings when making purchasing decisions.

Boner knew about it and blessed it (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620305)

Boner knew about it and blessed it--if he wasn't hip deep, he'd have no problems shutting it down.

He saw a chance to knife the Tea Party in the back with the IRS blade and took it.

But, they've the dirt on him and he can't burn them without getting burned himself.

That's why you see such Herculean efforts to massage this to a quiet end.

Let me put it this way: If he was clean, he'd have no problem dragging these "low level employees" in under threat of contempt and then jail them for perjury.
Because that's an easy win-win: You show the base you're fighting for them and you win the middle because everyone hates the IRS.

Imagine if it came out that the Army brass was targeting liberals and drumming them out back in 2006 to 2012. Would there have to be an APB for Speaker Pelosi to get her thoughts?

Model S vs Hummer (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620467)

You'll find out real quick that weight makes a big difference... Assume a Humvee and a Model S collide Head on, both going the same speed.

Because the Humvee has greater mass, the Model S would wind up going backwards, and the Humvee would continue moving forward after the collision.

This means the actual amount of energy that needs to dissipate in the Model S is much higher than the Humvee, because the change in velocity is much higher, and the amount of energy expended in the collision is = 1/2 * mass * (change in velocity) ^ 2

I think to call it the 'safest car ever' is quite a bold lie. Clearly there are safer vehicles out there ( Tanks, Semi-Trucks, even airplanes). These NSHTA safety ratings are done for ludicrously slow speeds as well! Don't expect a lot of safety at 70mph...

http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/how-to-calculate-velocities-of-two-objects-with-di.html

Re:Model S vs Hummer (2)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620743)

I'm not a smart man, but I wouldn't consider tanks, semi-trucks, or airplanes to be cars. SUV's in general are classified as trucks for the purposes of crash testing. Can you think of a safer CAR that has been tested? The people who do the testing can't.

Re:Model S vs Hummer (5, Insightful)

Nemyst (1383049) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620755)

The Model S is a really heavy car, actually, almost the weight of the Ford F-150. Only a Hummer or another such extremely rare car weights significantly more. I think that speaks more for how dangerous Hummers are on the roads than how "unsafe" the Model S is. Regardless, though, the Model S is safer than any other car in its category, which is the metric that actually matters. If you're shopping for a sedan, you don't give a shit if a semi is going to give you better survival rates in a collision.

Also, don't expect safety in any vehicle above 60mph. Drive safely instead of relying on technical means to buffer a crash.

Re:Model S vs Hummer (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620947)

You may want to reconsider the juxtaposition of these two statements:
"I think that speaks more for how dangerous Hummers are on the roads than how "unsafe" the Model S is. Regardless, though, the Model S is safer than any other car in its category"

Hummers are dangerous because they're heavy, but the S is safe because it's heavy?

Re:Model S vs Hummer (1)

rsborg (111459) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620787)

I think to call it the 'safest car ever' is quite a bold lie. Clearly there are safer vehicles out there ( Tanks, Semi-Trucks, even airplanes). These NSHTA safety ratings are done for ludicrously slow speeds as well! Don't expect a lot of safety at 70mph...

Meanwhile the likelyhood, given the Hummer is no longer sold in large numbers, that you'll run into a Hummer with a Tesla is much lower than if you happened to own a Hummer and had a rollover.

The biggest danger for SUV drivers is the SUV itself.

Re:Model S vs Hummer (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620803)

You must be talking about the first-gen Hummer, and not the expensive paper-mache ones they sell now?

Re:Model S vs Hummer (4, Interesting)

Spy Handler (822350) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620805)

In a head-on collision with another vehicle, yes weight makes a big difference. However you seem to think that headons are the only type of accidents that exist. into. But actually true headons are quite rare and make up a small percentage of accidents. (which is why NHTSA started testing offset headons and side impacts and so on because they're much more common).

Anyways there are accidents where weight hurts you rather than help you. Would you rather crash into the side of a mountain at 60mph in a M-1 Abrams tank, Humvee, or a Tesla S? How about a rollover?

Re:Model S vs Hummer (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620891)

I think to call it the 'safest car ever' is quite a bold lie. Clearly there are safer vehicles out there ( Tanks, Semi-Trucks, even airplanes)

So it's not the safest car because there are safer non-car vehicles?

That's like saying the African bush elephant isn't really the largest land animal because blue whales are bigger.

NHTSA tests are **NOT** independent (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620663)

They are government crash tests. Governments have agendas. All governments. The US government especially. This administration conducts daily Whitehouse circle jerks around electric cars.

Probably need it (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620859)

If tesla drivers drive the same way Prius and Accord drivers drive, pull out in front of people and slow down and driving slowing in the middle lane; they need that crash rating.

At least when a BMW or Audi driver cuts me off, they're usually driving faster than I am and they know which pedal is the accelerator. Toyota and Honda drivers seem to have a problem with that. Just look at the alleged Toyota acceleration problem a few years ago, they didn't know the break from the gas. (Yeah, Audi 5K drivers also had that problem.)

Counter productive (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620881)

Does this mean that the drivers will feel safer in them and therefore drive less carefully as a result?

The cars might be safer, but I bet it still hurts if one hits you

The 1 percent (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,29 days | (#44620897)

The Tesla
A car only driven by the 1%
that is subsidized by the 99%.
Isn't crony capitalism grand?

Why all the hate? (1)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | 1 year,29 days | (#44620989)

I mean realize that the Model S does not have anything in the front so its just a large crumple zone. All other cars have 1 ton of engine block in the front and depending on how severe the accident is, that engine block is going to come into the passenger cabin as some point. I mean I would say that the car is probably as safe on any other side as any other car, but for head on collisions it moves the rating up a notch.

But I mean who buys a car because of its safety rating? I mean there are millions of people driving Toyota's that don't stop when you want them to and they still have high safety ratings so to argue about this is moot.

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