Tesla’s P85D Breaks CONSUMER REPORTS Rating System Forever
Not that it wasn’t already as plainly obvious as dominance of any kind gets, but Tesla just became the automotive industry’s analog to that one classmate who nukes everyone’s hopes for a forgiving curve by wiping the floor with every single exam without breaking a sweat.
Above all else, CONSUMER REPORTS is an indefatigable watch dog. The magazine’s highest praises take on such significance because it is one of a impossibly rare media outlets that sells absolutely no advertising space. For decades, it has been the most authentic voice in cautionary advisements against poorly made products. On the other hand, in the absence of any faint impression of bought-and-paid-for reviews, when CONSUMER REPORTS heaps exceptional praise, no accolade exceeds the honor.
That raises a question: when Elon Musk’s groundbreaking, game-changing engineering leaves the unimpugnable consumer voice of honesty with no choice but to rethink its entire rating system based on one product’s incredible performance, what is left to say?
This, Automotive Industry, is why you can’t have nice things anymore: Elon keeps breaking them.
Tesla’s Model S P85D electric all-wheel-drive sedan crushed perfection. No, really. By their own definition, the CONSUMER REPORTS scoring scale doesn’t exceed 100. It set such a unique benchmark that the vehicle’s testers awarded it the magazine’s first-ever 103.
Of course, rules are rules. When the final critique went to press, the P85D listed with a perfect “100”. Blame it on “insane mode”.
Yes. Insane Mode is a thing, an acceleration boost that sends the P85D’s speed to heights that run neck-and-neck with the world’s most powerful gas-powered supercars and set a precedent as the single faster car ever tested by CONSUMER REPORTS. It’s zero-to-60 time of 3.5 seconds charted for the review are actually a minor letdown.
The P85D has previously charted 3.2 seconds several times.
Here’s one to really bake your ziti: CONSUMER REPORTS openly acknowledged several flaws in the P85D’s makeup. For all its comfort, convenience and safety given unparalleled praises in the final assessment, it’s a six-figure car without the “opulent” interior touches that festoon other autos with comparable price tags. Also, CONSUMER REPORTS notes that there are logistical conundrums that its elecric power source inherently throws into any trip over 200 miles.
Wait a second, though. Other cars – not very many, but an elite few – have gone faster. So, why the above-and-beyond ultimate tally?
Simple: the other cars can’t hold a candle to Tesla’s energy efficiency. Musk and Tesla iron out a few more wrinkles from their designs with every model that hits the road. As it stands, this one already does things that still live beyond the wildest dreams of any traditionally fueled vehicle it leaves in its pollutant-free, wonderful dust. Just how far away is perfection, really?
Our guess? Barely 200 miles. If that.