Tesla – A Business Workhorse

There has been a long stretch since my last Tesla blog.  I have been busy and honestly, there really isn’t much to add to the story as far as my opinion of the car.  If you are on the fence about getting any Tesla as a business vehicle, get off it and get one.  It is a dependable work horse.

I now own a 2017 Model X with just under 70,000 miles in 15 months - and it has sat for about 60 days as I rent cars when I fly to the west coast.  Roughly speaking I drive about 65,000 miles in it every 12 months.

I drive interstates in the most crowded traffic and I cannot live without autopilot and traffic aware cruise control.  I greatly miss it and driving becomes more of a one sided effort in the rentals.  Driving an automated Tesla is like working with a willing partner.  We drive better together than either of us alone.  Driving “brain dead” is out of the question but driving with a car that is always watching and guiding relieves the brain of the constant stress of long distance driving.  I end the day more refreshed and look forward to the morning drive.

But there’s more.  I also drive on back country two and one lane roads, country driveways and open fields.  I raise the suspension and forge across small streams, ruts, rocks and very large holes.  With all of this there are two weaknesses.  The first is when on autopilot, the car won’t avoid potholes which it hits full speed.  I clench my teeth but so far, no tire, wheel or suspension damage.  Apparently potholes occur where everyone else drives - right in the tire grooves of the road.  The second weakness are the thin tire sidewalls.  I have never worried about bumping a granite curb with my 10 ply Michelin truck tires.  Not so with these tires.  The wall was shredded as I parked at 5 MPH.

The Bottom Line

Would I buy another Tesla for my business?  Absolutely.  I bought the P Model 3 in October for my associate who has already put on 15,000 miles in 3 months.  I should have gotten her the X with its ability to raise the suspension, but except for this, the 3 is also a workhorse.  It has full autopilot and two motor all wheel drive.  Both models are very comfortable and have plenty of room for what we do.  The most important fact to me is that both models are the safest cars made today. 

These Teslas are safe, durable and fun to drive.  They are economical (we have free lifetime supercharging) with very low maintenance compared to the fuel guzzling, DEF fluid sucking, fuel and oil filter needing full size diesel pick up trucks we replaced.  

The 3 will never see snow but seems to handle all surfaces we drive on.  It has bottomed out peeling away some felt off the bottom and a heavy rain caused the loss of an ugly Aero wheel cover.  We are removing the other three and using the $50 lug covers.  I would recommend purchasing the upgraded wheels.

The X has been driven in the snow once.  It was able to go but didn’t steer or brake well.  I would suggest purchasing the chains for the rear wheels - $440.  

My wife says I’m not a perfect 10 in every category but she wouldn’t trade me in on anyone else.  After all, I’m her work horse and so are my Teslas.

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Comments 2

    1. Post

      Please visit Tesla.com for accurate pricing as there are several options such as battery size, the number of motors, winter package, sound system, wheel size, sport packages and full autopilot.

      For me, the cost at 5 years for the miles I drive (about 300,000 in 5 years) was less for this Tesla than for a new diesel full size pick up. I was impressed with the batteries and the motors warranted for an unlimited number of miles (or 8 years). More importantly, all Tesla models are the highest rated vehicles for safety in all categories. What is the cost for knowing my survival rate and quality of life for me and Melissa is good if we are involved in a serious accident? We both drive about 5000 miles every month and we witness horrible driving decisions every day we drive. Above that is the fact that we are not part of the environmental problem associated with the daily combustion of oil obtained by suspect methods. As Jack Johnson says in one of his songs, who is really drilling for oil? (the consumer) The generation of electricity is well regulated and therefore has a minimal impact on our environment when compared to the burn quality of our personal vehicles. The cars are assembled in America with few if any foreign parts in a state of the art assembly building run on solar powered assisted electricity.

      While your question appears simple, the answer is not. For someone who drives only short distances maybe the purchase cost difference will never be recouped. But the Model 3 is equal to many car models in price but with no maintenance costs (other than tires and wipers). If the environment is important to you then you should look into getting any electric car. If safety is important to you then look into getting a Tesla with evidence of their safety. If Made in America is important then Tesla is an obvious choice.

      Thanks Elaine for reading my blogs and commenting. I apologize for making the answer so long but I think there are a lot of people reading this who may also want to know the answer to this question and I wanted it to be more complete than a dollar amount.

Your thoughts are important for all to hear and may help others to learn from your experiences. Take the time to add to the discussion. However due to time limitations I will probably not answer direct questions to me. Thanks, Doc T

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