The Tesla Model X has launched at last, and while there is much for fans to be excited about, it hasn’t been all smooth sailing for the new electric SUV.
Revealed first as a concept in 2012, the final production car was initially due to go on sale in 2013. Development delays pushed that launch out first to 2014, and then again to 2015.
While the Tesla Model S is, by general consensus, a handsome hatchback disguised as a sedan, the Model X is a little more polarising. Impressions from the earlier concept were not flattering, with the Model S’ design aesthetic not coping well with the X’s extra height.
In the flesh, the production version of the Model X is a little more appealing, but we’re definitely not rushing to affix adjectives, like ‘beautiful’ or ‘handsome’, to it. Despite the fact that our driver didn’t floor the accelerator fully, the X felt impressively quick for a vehicle that weighs 2468 kilograms.
According to Tesla, the 90D can cover the 0-60mph (0-97km/h) sprint in 4.8 seconds and hit a top speed of 250km/h.
The fully optioned Signature Edition models that will trundle down the production first ride on 22-inch alloy wheels with 265/35 tyres up front and 285/35 rubber at the rear. On Elon Musk’s version, which we spent some time with, the alloy wheels have a matte black finish.
As a piece of theatre, the Model X’s ‘Falcon Wing’ doors are impressive. With through-the-metal ultrasonic sensors the car is able to detect the distance to obstacles, such as ceilings, other vehicles and walls. The opening and closing mechanism is always on the look out for objects and will actively avoid hitting them.
Published: Tuesday, October 13, 2015