Tesla's Groundbreaking Vehicle Engineering on Display in Geneva


GENEVA--March 1, 2011: Tesla Motors introduces its excellence in vehicle engineering at the Geneva Auto Show with a detailed look at Model S. Engineered from the ground up as an EV, Model S is meticulously designed for superior aerodynamics, stability and handling, crash safety, performance and range. The expanded view of Model S on display showcases how Tesla engineers have created Model S to excel in all of these areas.

“Suspension, aerodynamics, and the marriage of the battery pack to the body structure distinguish Model S as the superior vehicle of its class.”

Tesla is already recognized for its innovation in electric powertrain engineering and battery technology, and Tesla design is known for its unique refusal to compromise beauty or efficiency. Tesla assembled the brightest, most-promising automotive engineers to take a fresh approach, without the restrictions imposed by traditional combustion architecture, to building the Model S. The result includes superior aerodynamics, remarkable torsional rigidity and an in-house extruded aluminum suspension system.

"We've engineered Model S to be a great driver's car," says Peter Rawlinson, VP of Engineering, Tesla. "Suspension, aerodynamics, and the marriage of the battery pack to the body structure distinguish Model S as the superior vehicle of its class."

Model S Development

Model S development includes Alpha and Beta testing phases. Alpha road testing began in 2010, showing that the low center of gravity and stiff body structure allows for great agility and handling. Alphas will be used to improve ride and handling development, powertrain integration, and crash testing. The production-intent Beta vehicles, produced at the Tesla Factory later this year, will provide further testing and development opportunities.

Alpha testing continues, with over 15 Alphas so far used to test Model S under extreme conditions for brakes, suspension, driving dynamics, fit and finish, and safety requirements. Most recently testing ensured the antilock, stability control and electronics systems work together correctly.

The four door Model S seats five with an optional two rear-facing seats. The premium sedan's center console includes a 17-inch touch-screen with wireless connectivity and remote-programming abilities. It accelerates from 0-100 km in less than 6 seconds. The Model S is equipped with the option of a 260-, 370- or 480-km range battery pack and can charge using any conventional outlet. The battery pack is positioned under the floor, maximizing packaging efficiency, for unparalleled cargo room and versatility.

Roadster display

Also on display will be one of the four Roadster Sports modified for the 2010 Race of Champions in Dusseldorf, Germany. The ROC-modified Roadsters have FIA-approved racing cages, new brake pads, carbon fiber racing seats, six-point harnesses and other special equipment. The four Roadsters in the competition were the first electric vehicles ever to compete in this prestigious annual series.World famous drivers like Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel drove the Roadster during their track practice.

The Tesla Roadster proves Tesla's electric powertrain is the most advanced in the industry. It is the only automobile in the world to provide super car performance with zero emissions. The Roadster accelerates from 0-97 km/h in under 3.7 seconds and has an electronically limited top-line speed of 201 kmh, yet it can be fully or partially recharged by renewable energy, including solar or wind power.

In just over two years, Tesla has produced four iterations of the Tesla Roadster, demonstrating Tesla's commitment to innovation and the company's close feedback loop with its customers. In the last year, the Roadster has reached significant milestones including delivery of over 1,500 cars in over 30 countries, 20 million electric kilometers driven.


Tesla's goal is to produce a full range of electric cars, from premium sports cars to mass market vehicles, relentlessly driving down the cost of electric vehicles. It is currently the only automaker in the U.S. that builds and sells highway-capable EVs in serial production. Palo Alto, Calif.-based Tesla designs and manufactures EVs and EV powertrain components. Tesla has delivered more than 1,500 Roadsters to customers in North America, Europe and Asia. The Tesla Roadster accelerates faster than most sports cars yet produces no emissions.

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