New models - Tesla - Model S
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13 Apr 2016
TESLA has treated its Model S large luxury sedan to a mild technical update and aesthetic makeover, that has trimmed its imitation gloss grille down to a slender gap in line with the mechanically similar Model X SUV.
While the freshly revealed Model 3 sports a clean snout, the new-look Model S and Model X still have the slightest suggestion of a grille, albeit thinned out to a mere slit above a cleaner expanse of bumper, as well as a minor fettling of headlights and tail-lights.
Its all LED headlights now feature 14 articulating modules, which aim the light beam in turns, while at the back end, the Model S' lights have a darker inclusion to separate the LED light cluster from the pop-open charge port.
As part of the update, the new Model S has the company's borderline alarmist “bioweapon defense mode” cabin air filter, which introduces a High Efficiency Particulate Arrestance (HEPA) filter, which was first fitted to the Model X SUV.
Positive cabin air pressure prevents atmospheric air from entering the passenger compartment, while introduced air is circulated through the HEPA filter to remove “at least 99.97 per cent of particulate exhaust pollution and effectively all allergens, bacteria and other contaminants”.
The filtration system and headlights are available optionally as part of the $4500 Premium Upgrades Package, which also adds LED foglights, Nappa leather dash, synthetic suede roof lining, LED ambient lighting and illuminated door handles.
With the update, standard Model S chargers are upgraded from 40 amps to 48 amps for speedier battery replenishing, while customers are offered more interior customisation options, with a new Figured Ash Wood and Dark Ash Wood veneer now available.
The new additions and upgrades to the range are incorporated into Model S United States production this week and all vehicles ordered from today are subject to the changes, with Australian deliveries expected in about July this year.
With fluctuations in international exchange rates, Tesla's prices are subject to frequent changes with the updated entry-level Model S 70 now retailing in Victoria for $131,888 driveaway or $142,148 for the dual-motor four-wheel drive version.
That price rises to $170,051 for the mid-range 90D and $211,078 for the range-topping P90D.
Tesla Australia communications and marketing manager Heath Walker told GoAuto the changes were in keeping with the North American car-maker's intention to continuously improve its range of zero-emissions vehicles.
“We often talk about all of the ways that Tesla vehicles get better over time,” he said. “Through previous software updates we’ve made Model S faster, smarter and even introduced industry-leading safety and convenience features.
“As always, we will continue to add new features and functionality to Model S through over-the-air software updates and, as always, software updates are free throughout the life of the vehicle, making Model S (and Model X) the only cars that actually improve over time.”
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