Elon Musk claims a Tesla with a 600-mile range will be available by 2017

Tesla Model S rear

During an interview with Danish media, Elon Musk revealed that he estimates Tesla will be able to offer a model with a 600-plus-mile electric range by 2017.

Tesla’s CEO was attending the opening of Tesla’s first factory in Europe when he disclosed that, within a year or two, the EV automaker should have the right battery and powertrain technology to equip models for 1,000 kilometers or 620 miles per charge.

Now before you call it “game over” for the internal combustion engine, it’s worth noting that Musk’s 600-plus range claim was based on the fact that a Tesla Model S P85D just managed to travel 452 miles on a single charge by hovering at 24.2 miles per hour for its entire journey. Real-world range will be substantially less, but the point is this: range anxiety will slowly be less of an issue for electric vehicle consumers and prospects.

Beyond 2017, Musk also believes that a range of 745 miles will be possible by 2020, around the same time he claims Tesla will be selling 500,000 models each year. Musk also reiterated that Tesla’s Autopilot autonomous driving technologies are on schedule for rollout within the next couple years, though he doesn’t expect federal regulators will give the go-ahead for production until at least 2020.

What consumers should expect to be available soon is an automated passing function that could be part of Tesla vehicles by the end of this year. Other functions like lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, and automatic parallel parking — all features that are currently available on other automaker’s production vehicles — are currently in Beta testing and will be equipped on Model S and perhaps Model X vehicles by 2016.

“We don’t want to set the expectation that you can basically pay no attention to what the car is doing,” Musk said in a recent earnings call. That expectation probably won’t be fulfilled for several more years.

Cars

Tesla will have ‘autonomous robotaxis’ in 2020, Elon Musk says

Tesla will deploy self-driving cars in a "robotaxi" service in 2020, CEO Elon Musk said at the automaker's Autonomy Investor Day. Musk has promised autonomous Tesla electric cars before, but will he finally deliver this time?
Cars

Electric car buying guide: What you need to know before you buy

EVs are better than they've ever been, but buying your first battery-powered car can be an intimidating experience. Digital Trends has compiled a comprehensive guide that walks you through the process of buying an EV.
Cars

Qiantu K50 is a Chinese electric sports car that’s coming to the U.S.

The Qiantu K50 is a Chinese electric sports car that will be marketed in the United States by California-based Mullen Technologies. The carbon-fiber bodied, 402-horsepower K50 is expected to go on sale in 2020.
Cars

2020 Ford Escape gets sleeker styling, greener powertrains, more tech

The 2020 Ford Escape gets redesigned for the first time since the 2013 model year. Ford brought back the hybrid powertrain, and is adding a plug-in hybrid option for the first time.
Cars

Café racer-inspired ebike hits 28 mph quickly and quietly with carbon belt drive

Ebike manufacturer Electra launched the Café Moto Go, an advanced ebike. The Café Moto Go's step-over frame was inspired by café racers. The Café Moto Go is a premium performance ebike built to run smoothly and extra quietly.
Cars

Where to go when your EV is low: Rich neighborhoods have most charging stations

If you're running low on juice in your electric vehicle, head for the rich part of town. A survey by Realtor.com found median home list prices in the 20 U.S. ZIP codes with the most EV charging stations were 2.6 times the national average.
Product Review

BMW’s smallest M car is its biggest performance statement

The BMW M2 Competition is frighteningly quick in a straight line, and its short wheelbase lends itself to some hilarious power slides, but it’s the curvy roads and tight tracks where this coupe comes alive.
Cars

Ford is keeping hackers out of its cars by putting key fobs to sleep

Ford found a way to stop thieves who try to hack their way into a car by duplicating its key fob. It developed a smart key fob that puts itself to sleep when it's idle for at least 40 seconds. It automatically wakes up when someone picks it…
Cars

This vintage Ford Bronco off-roader has a modern electric powertrain

Zero Labs took a classic Ford Bronco and replaced its gasoline engine with an electric motor and lithium-ion battery pack. So you get the style and off-road capability of a Bronco, but with zero emissions.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Earth Day, indoor container farming, robot submarines

Today on Digital Trends Live, we discuss how technology intersects with Earth Day, a new Tim Cook biography, indoor container farming, robot spy submarines, A.I. death metal, and more.
Cars

Startup Smartcar accuses bigger rival Otonomo of stealing intellectual property

California-based startup Smartcar claims its intellectual property was stolen by a much bigger (and better-funded) rival named Otonomo. Otonomo hasn't given its side of the story yet.
Cars

2020 Nissan 370Z Special Edition celebrates 50 Years of the Z car

Nissan is celebrating 50 years of its iconic "Z car" with a special edition of the 2020 370Z. The 50th-anniversary model is dressed to look like a 1970s race car, but remains technically unchanged.
Cars

Tesla rushes investigators to China to figure out why a parked Model S exploded

Tesla has sent a team of in-house investigators to Shanghai to determine why an early Model S suddenly exploded and caught fire. The electric sedan was parked before the fire started, and the cause of the blaze remains unknown.
Cars

Google Maps now shows EV owners which charging stations are occupied

Google has just beefed up its Maps app with extra data to help EV owners find the nearest charging station. Drivers can also find out about the number and types of ports available, and whether they're occupied.