Good things come to those who wait, ladies.
Tesla’s all-wheel-drive Model X SUV was announced last year, but due to a number of production delays, we won’t be seeing it until spring 2015. Those issues should give the company time to hone the car for its target audience: women and families, according to a report by Ecomento.
“We’ve probably got a little too guy-centric on the [Model] S, so we’re hoping to correct that with the [Model] X,” said Elon Musk, CPA of Tesla and our universe’s Tony Stark.
A focus for Musk was to make the Model X very roomy inside, with easy-access third-row seating, increased visibility, and a higher level of adjustability on the seats for drivers of all sizes. So what’s the holdup? For one thing, the “falcon-wing” doors (which are better than gull-wing doors, obviously) were difficult to seal properly, allowing rain, wind, and road noise inside the cabin.
Secondly, Tesla’s vision of a practical, yet expressive and stylish SUV simply proved difficult to materialize. Musk said it’s “damn hard to make an SUV that is beautiful yet incredibly functional at the same time.”
There was also the issue of weight. The Tesla Model S already weighs 4,785 pounds, and thus the Model X, which is larger, is likely to weigh close to 5,000. Tesla typically uses lightweight, aluminum body panels to stay svelte, but the undeniable truth is that battery packs and electronic motors are heavy.
Despite these challenges, Tesla considers itself a “no-compromise” company, so you can be assured that Musk would not sign off on a car until it was ready.
“We have two choices, which is either [to] produce an amazing car that I think is going to blow people away, or produce a pretty good car,” he continued. I think it’s safe to say the Model X will rise above “pretty good.”
More than anything, the Model X emphasizes practicality. The falcon-wing doors open up, not out, allowing the SUV to park in tight spaces without trapping its occupants inside. There are worse places to be trapped though; the Model X has a plush, modern interior, with room to seat seven. There are also two trunks for storage, and as with all Teslas, the Model X can fill up without harming the rainforest.
Don’t mistake practicality for docility, though. As was the Model S, the Model X should be quite responsive and quick. It has a low center of gravity, instant torque from the electric motors, and accelerates from 0 to 60 mph is less than five seconds. That’s STI territory.
A fun-to-drive, practical SUV that fits the whole family with knockout looks? Seems like the Model X won’t just be great for families, it’ll be great for everybody.