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Tesla Model S and Model X charge faster and go farther with the same battery

An all-new drivetrain for the Tesla Model S and Model X enables the electronic vehicles to travel farther before recharging than the previous design. New-build Tesla Model S Long Range sedans have a 370-mile range and Model X Long Range SUVs can go 325 miles per EPA cycle, the standard Federal Test Procedure (FTP). The increased driving range comes with no change to the vehicles’ 100 kWh battery pack. Tesla announced the changes on the company’s blog.

Additional improvements for the Models S and X include faster charging and a better ride with an upgraded adaptive air suspension. Tesla also announced lower entry-level prices for both vehicles by bringing back the previously discontinued Standard Range versions.

The Model S starting prices for the three variants are now: Standard Range, $68,750; Long Range, $78,750, and Performance, $89,750. Model X starting prices are: Standard Range, $73,950; Long Range, $83,950; and Performance, $94,950.

In a nod to customer loyalty, Tesla will include the $20,000 Ludicrous Mode upgrade at no charge for all current Model S and Model X owners who purchase a new Model S or X Performance version.

The new drivetrain for the Model S and Model X improve efficiency with a combination of an optimized motor, silicon carbide power electronics, and improved lubrication, cooling, bearings, and gear designs. These upgrades result in a greater than 10% range increase from more efficient energy flow from the battery pack during acceleration and back to the battery with regenerative braking.

The drivetrain changes also help acceleration for Standard Range and Long Range versions. The Model S Standard Range accelerates from zero-to-60 mph in 4.0 seconds and the Long Range in 3.7 seconds. The new Model X Standard Range hits 60 mph from a standing start in 4.6 seconds and Model X Long Range gets to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds.

In addition to the improved range and acceleration, the new Model S and Model X will charge 50% faster than previous versions. The cars can now charge at a 200 kW rate on Tesla’s V3 Superchargers and 145 kW on V2 Superchargers.

Tesla upgraded the software for the in-house-engineered fully adaptive damping air suspension in the Model S and Model X. With the new software, which can be updated over-the-air, the suspension automatically adapts to the road and driver actions. The suspension’s leveling system keeps the car low for less air resistance and softens the ride for greater passenger comfort while cruising. When the driver gets more aggressive, however, the suspension switches to a firmer, more responsive ride.

According to Tesla, the changes to the Model S and Model X start this week at the company’s Fremont, California factory and apply to all new orders on the Tesla website.

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Bruce Brown
Digital Trends Contributing Editor Bruce Brown is a member of the Smart Homes and Commerce teams. Bruce uses smart devices…
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