The Achilles Heel of EVs is range, but maybe not for long. Part-time Bond villain, and CEO of Tesla Motors Elon Musk says that a 500-mile range EV is not so very far in the future. A 500-mile range would be close to double that of the Tesla Model S’s current range of 250 miles. In spite of that, Musk told AutoExpress that Tesla basically already has the technology: “It will be possible to have a 500-mile range car. In fact we could do it quite soon, but it would increase the price. Over time you could expect to have that kind of range.” Unfortunately, price is something that could be an issue. While the Model S is competitively priced for its segment, its base price of $69,000 can hardly be called cheap; and the performance model is downright expensive with a price of $93,000. Batteries are already a significant part of that cost, as Musk explained, “We have the highest energy density battery in the world, twice that of the Nissan LEAF.” But that battery, along with other factors, also means the Model S costs more than twice what the Leaf does. So the technology may well be there, but for the time being Tesla’s upcoming models will feature somewhat less ambitions ranges and prices. Tesla’s new BMW 3 Series-fighting Model III will have a range of around 200 miles and cost about $35,000. While Musk didn’t specify it makes sense that a 500-mile range package might become available on the Model S as an option, in much the same way the bigger electric motors and stronger battery of the performance edition currently are. Regardless, Tesla will continue to put pressure on major automakers to up their game not only when it comes to EVs but also their internal combustion vehicles.
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