Skip to main content

Signed, sealed, and delivered: Consumer Reports receives its Model S, we weep in envy

Tesla Front Angle Sunset
Image used with permission by copyright holder

It’s not often we’re jealous of other media publications, as the cool kids on the block it’s never really been an issue — but it happens. Every so often our buttery smooth, and naturally flawless skin, lets off a slight green hue and the cause of our latest onset of envy sees Consumer Reports to blame.

Last week, the publication, which is known for purchasing a vast majority of its own products for review rather than being supplied by various manufacturers (cars included), took delivery of its very own Tesla Model S. Consumer Reports already gave the Model S a quick spin back in November, but had yet receive delivery of its own unit for review.

So what did Consumer Reports have to say about the Model S? So far, not much in the way of driving (real road tests have yet to commence) but it did lament the more than two years it took from placing its $5,000 deposit on the car to the vehicle’s ultimate delivery. The Model S is currently riding a wave of critical acclaim and public interest after snagging Motor Trend’s 2013 Car of the Year award. Unsurprisingly, delivery time for orders of the all-electric luxury sedan remain as far as a year out.

Tesla Model S Alpha Model Front Angle
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The Model S, equipped with a 40 kWh battery and an estimated sing-charge range of 160 miles, starts at $57,400 (sans federal tax credits and deductions). According to its report, Consumer Reports managed to option out its award-winning all-electric with some $30,000+ add-ons, including a larger 85 kWh battery (good for an estimated 265 mile range on a single charge) as well as air-suspension, Nappa leather interior, and large sunroof. The final price for its motoring masterpiece: $89,650.

On a rather positive note, Consumer Reports did praise the entire purchasing process for the car, explaining how easy and efficient it was, and negating the need to ever step foot in a dealership. As we reported last year, Tesla has undertaken a more boutique approach to selling its cars, and Tesla dealerships have been springing up in malls and high foot traffic areas across the country since the summer of 2012.

Of course, the Model S isn’t the only high-profile alternative drivetrain vehicle the publication has recently tested. Just last year the Fisker Karma plug-in hybrid was given a thorough run-through, only to inexplicably break down during calibration testing. We anticipate the Model S will fare better, while we eagerly await our review unit to arrive. Until then, we reckon the good folks over at Consumer Reports wouldn’t mind giving us a lift?

Editors' Recommendations

Amir Iliaifar
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Associate Automotive Section Editor for Digital Trends, Amir Iliaifar covers the ever increasing cross-section between tech…
Tesla will start delivering the new Model Y crossover on Friday the 13th
Tesla Model Y One Millionth Car

Tesla's time-honored habit of not sticking to the deadlines it sets will work out in the favor of Model Y buyers. The California-based automaker will begin delivering the Model Y, the latest addition to its range, on Friday the 13th.

Company co-founder and CEO Elon Musk unveiled the Model Y (pictured below) during a private event in early 2019, and he announced production would start in the fall of 2020. We're not out of winter yet, so fall isn't exactly around the corner, but Tesla fan site Electrek learned Tesla has started contacting early reservation holders to set up a delivery appointment. Future owners are sharing delivery information in real time on a Google spreadsheet.

Read more
Tesla’s Model Y is on track to become its bestselling car
Tesla Model Y front

The Cybertruck received tremendous attention, as it will compete against America's most popular vehicles and it's shaped like nothing else on the road. But I think the  Tesla Model Y, now due out in early 2020, is Tesla's next superstar.

I'm confident it will dethrone the Model 3 and become the company's bestseller if Tesla manages to execute a smooth launch - and the company's Q4 earnings call provided plenty of reasons to be optimistic.
Everybody loves crossovers
Revealed in March 2019, the Model Y is a more spacious version of the Model 3, and a smaller alternative to the Model X, though without the unorthodox gull-wing doors.

Read more
Tesla Model S, Model X could get major interior and powertrain updates in 2020
tesla model s

One of the most prominent Tesla hackers has learned that the company is about to update the Model S and the Model X, the two oldest nameplates in its three-car lineup. The firm often makes changes to its vehicles via its over-the-air software updating system, but the next round of upgrades will include hardware modifications carried out at the factory.

A mysterious hacker who goes by the name Green wrote on Twitter that Tesla files he has been able to view reveal that the S and the X are about to receive a wireless device charger, two new batteries, new-look seats, a different charging port, and a redesigned suspension. The addition of a Qi charger might require a broader interior redesign, which rumors have pointed to for the past few months. The S and the X might also get the same touchscreen as the Model 3 and the Y. And while we're intrigued by the new batteries, details about their capacity remain under wraps for the time being.

Read more