Tesla, the company that’s making the electric car cool (and that’s also helmed by entrepreneur-engineer-inventor-extraordinaire Elon Musk), recently opened a gallery at Legacy West in Plano. We jumped at the chance to take a test drive and learn more about the new Plano location. Maybe you’ve heard of Tesla, but don’t really understand why these cars are so badass. Let me explain:
Yep, you can just plug in your car at home to charge. It uses a 240v outlet, similar to the one you plug your washing machine into. Tesla also has Destination Chargers at restaurants, movie theaters and other places where you’ll spend a few hours, and there are Superchargers along major highways. So you’ll save money on gas and won’t have to pay that ridiculous markup on energy drinks and taquitos at the gas station.
As the great Ricky Bobby said, “If you ain’t first, you’re last.” Finally, get to meetings on time. The Tesla Model X, the brand’s sport utility vehicle, can go 0-60mph in 4.8 seconds. Not entirely sure, but I don’t think the family minivan will do that.
Look mom, no hands! Well, technically you do need to keep your hands on the wheel, but the Autopilot feature is there to make driving more enjoyable. If you want to change lanes, just flip on the turn signal and Autopilot will assist you. It’s a little creepy at first, but if we can all just relax and let the robots take over, the world will be a safer place.
KITT is Real!
Remember when Knight Rider used his watch to call KITT to come pick him up? Tesla is pretty close to that. Just click Summon on the Tesla mobile app, and the car will drive to you. Now if they only added Turbo Boost. On wait, they kinda did. It’s called “Ludicrous Mode” and allows the Model X to go from 0-60mph in 2.9 seconds. This video sums it up the best. It’s fine for the kids to watch. They bleeped out all the cursing coming from the passengers being plastered to their seats.
Back to the Future
Tesla’s Model X has Falcon Wing doors, not to be confused with similar-looking Gull Wing doors found on the DeLorean. Besides making the car look like it’s from the future, the Falcon Wing doors actually serve a purpose. Once the door opens vertically, it gives you room to actually fully stand in the third row of seats and load things into the car, like kids’ car seats or that stuff you picked up at that garage sale that you didn’t really need. And no, even when both Falcon Wing doors are open, the car will not fly. Bummer.
Touch Screen to Mars
The Model S sedan and the Model X SUV both come with a 17-inch touch display that controls things you’d expect, like music, navigation and your phone, but it’s also got a few more tricks. You can check the car’s energy usage, map your next trip and the closest charging stops, entertain your passengers with a drawing app, and even track the Mars Rover … on Mars. Seriously. That’s a real thing.
Tesla automobiles come equipped with multiple cameras and sensors, constantly checking what’s going on 360 degrees around the car. If your Tesla senses that you are about to collide with another object or vehicle, it will let you know. If you aren’t quick enough tapping the brakes, the Tesla will brake anyway, to hopefully avoid a collision. But don’t go driving toward a brick wall at 100mph and hope for the best. This car is not smart enough yet for dumb drivers.
When you visit the Tesla gallery at Legacy West, you can design and purchase your own completely customized vehicle. If the starting price of $70-75,000 is a little steep for you (Tesla plans to introduce the more affordable Model 3 in the near future), it still might be worth taking your own Tesla test drive to see if you can be one of the first Planoites to get a ticket on the Tollway in an electric car.Tesla >