4.8 out of 5
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Tesla disrupted the electric car status quo with the launch of its Model S sedan in 2012. A large electric car with a luxurious finish, a very usable long-distance range, and packed with the latest connected technology, the Tesla Model S inspired non-EV drivers to take the plunge and go electric. Performance is also a key ingredient in the Model S recipe, the supercar-like pace at odds with the conventional sedan silhouette. An important milestone in the Tesla story, this all-electric sedan is perfect for long commutes, trips with the family, or weekends away with your friends. Read on to find out why the 2018 Tesla Model S is such a good pick.
F 42.7"/R 35.4"
F 38.8"/R 35.3"
Ever since the Tesla Model S debuted in 2012, its performance has been a major draw. The 2018 Tesla Model S is available with 518, 618, or 762 hp (depending on the model you choose), power outputs that even a decade ago would have been the preserve of sports or even supercars. The fastest 2018 Tesla Model S is the P100D, which gets to 60 mph in a little over two seconds (according to the manufacturer, when new)—and remember, it's a large sedan! You'll want to take the long way home from the store.
Along with its breathtaking performance, the Model S is also famous for its fantastic range. One of the first electric cars with a practical and usable range for longer journeys, you can travel up to an EPA-estimated 259 miles in the entry-level 2018 Model S 75D when fully charged.
The school run will become more fun with the 2018 Tesla Model S' 17-inch touchscreen. It controls almost all of the car's functions and if you're a fan of technology, you'll love it, but it makes some of the car's most necessary functions a little fussier to use. However, kids and other passengers will love the large screen, but you'll appreciate the real-time connected satellite navigation features.
Tesla put the whole electric car ownership package into focus with the arrival of the Model S. The Supercharger network is the biggest electric car charging network in the world, with over 30,000 Supercharger charge points. They're called Superchargers for good reason, too, as they allow you to put 200 miles back into the Model S battery in as little as 15 minutes. Perfect for a busy lifestyle.
Because it is dominated by the large central touchscreen, the interior style of the Tesla Model S is clean and uncluttered with minimal distractions. Your passengers will like it, too, as the option of a panoramic sunroof helps let light in, and with generous interior space, all your nearest and dearest should be able to get comfortable. The trunk is big, too, and can even be turned into a passenger-carrying space with the option of two small rear-facing seats.
4.8 out of 54 customer reviews
Includes 19-inch aluminum wheels, adaptive air suspension, dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless entry, LED headlights, powered tailgate, a rearview camera, a 75-kWh battery and more.
Adds a 100-kWh battery and a 12-year corrosion perforation warranty and more.
Adds ventilated front seats and more.
All 2018 Tesla Model S versions are all-wheel-drive, so while they will not be as capable as a 'proper' off-road vehicle, they will provide additional traction in snowy and frozen conditions.
Tesla fitted earlier Model S variants with full leather seats, but all versions of the 2018 Tesla Model S have 'vegan' synthetic leather seats and trim, a material that Tesla has used on all its cars ever since.
Previously part of the Premium Upgrades package, a 580-watt surround sound system with 12 speakers is fitted to all 2018 Tesla Model S versions. Great news for your daily playlist.
Deep Blue Metallic
Midnight Silver Metallic
Obsidian Black Metallic
Pearl White Multi-Coat
Cream (75D and 100D)
Ever since it was introduced in 2012, a highlight of the Model S has been its minimalist interior, dominated by a huge central touchscreen. Looking and operating as a giant tablet, the 17-inch portrait orientation touchscreen on the 2018 Tesla Model S has a wow factor that cannot be denied, but the fact that almost all of the car's controls are accessed through it won't suit everyone. It is slick, though, and most functions can be found without too much effort.
The 2018 Tesla Model S can seat five passengers in two rows as standard. However, an optional pair of rear-facing foldaway jump seats in the luggage area turn it into an occasional seven-seater, although the seats are really only suitable for children. The 2018 Tesla Model S interior has 26.3 cu-ft of rear trunk space, with an additional 2.1 cu-ft of capacity under the hood or 'frunk'. Fold the rear seats down for a total luggage space of 58.1 cu-ft. Front legroom of the 2018 Model S is a generous 42.7 inches, with 35.4 inches for rear-seat passengers.
Tesla provides two full sets of LATCH car-seat system fittings in the 2018 Model S interior on the outer rear seats with a top tether anchor for the middle seat, although they are far from the easiest to access. A pair of child car seats can be accommodated in the rear seat row of the 2018 Model S, including infant rear seats, forward and rear-facing convertible car seats, and booster car seats.
A clue to the 2018 Tesla Model S range and performance is denoted by the numbering in the differing trim level nomenclature. The entry-level 2018 Model S 75D has a 75 kWh battery which is good for an official EPA-estimated range of 259 miles on a full charge.
Performance is one thing the Tesla Model S is known for, its truly mind-bending power and acceleration nudging that of many sports cars. Power output of the 2018 Model S 75D is 518 hp, with zero to 60 mph reached in just 4.2 seconds (according to the manufacturer, when new). The Model S 100D has 618 hp, which shoots it to 60 mph in 3.6 seconds (according to the manufacturer, when new), while the Model S P100D has 762 hp and a 2.2-second time from zero to 60 mph (according to the manufacturer, when new). In a difference from earlier rear-wheel-drive variants, all 2018 Tesla Model S versions are fitted with all-wheel drive, two electric motors, and a single-speed transmission.
2012-2022 Tesla Model S (First generation)
Tesla has only tweaked the Model S since it first hit US roads in 2012. Rather than change specifications annually in line with model years, Tesla chooses to update its vehicles on a constant and ongoing basis, evolving battery capacities, trim, and performance levels as it sees fit. The 2012 Tesla Model S launched with 40, 60, and 85 kWh battery options, with power ranging from 235 hp to 416 hp. The 40-kWh battery was dropped in 2013, with all-wheel drive 'D' models added in 2014. A pair of 70 kWh and 90 kWh battery options joined the line-up in 2015, along with the 'Ludicrous Package' which posted a zero-to-60 mph time of 2.8 seconds on P90D cars.
The 85-kWh battery was discontinued in 2016, and the body was refreshed in 2017, losing the large front grille. In 2019, Tesla shuffled trim levels to become Standard Range (later Long Range), Extended Range, and Performance, the latter with 762 hp. The 2020 Long Range Plus Model S tipped over the 400-mile mark, with an EPA-estimated range of 402 miles on a full charge.
The 2021 Tesla Model S saw big overhauls, with updated exterior revisions and a new interior, with a horizontal touchscreen, replacing the previous portrait version. A three-motor Model S Plaid was added with its 1,020 hp, and zero-to-60 mph time of 2 seconds (when new). Even with this amount of power, the 2021 Model S Plaid has an EPA-estimated range of 348 miles.
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