Tesla Model S Long Range Plus: Building the First 400-Mile Electric Vehicle14th August 2020
The freedom to travel anywhere is critical to Tesla’s mission. Since the introduction of its 265-mile Model S in 2012, they’ve continued to revisit every aspect of the design to deliver the longest-range and highest-performance electric vehicles on the road.
Starting last June, all North American Model S Long Range Plus vehicles have an official EPA-rated range of 402 miles, representing a nearly 20% increase in range when compared to a 2019 Model S 100D with the same battery pack design.
This significant achievement reflects Tesla’s obsession with efficiency and energy frugality and is realized through several changes, both iterative and transformational, in core hardware and system architecture development by the Tesla engineering, design, and production teams. These changes went into production earlier this year when they first started manufacturing Model S Long Range Plus at their factory in Fremont, California. All Model S Long Range Plus vehicles will receive the new 402-mile rating.
Here’s what’s new:
Significant Mass Reduction
Mass is the enemy of both efficiency and performance, and minimizing the weight of every component is an ongoing goal for their design and engineering teams. Several lessons from the engineering design and manufacturing of Model 3 and Model Y have now been carried over to Model S and Model X. This has unlocked new areas of mass reduction while maintaining the premium feel and performance of both vehicles. Additional weight savings have also been achieved through the standardization of Tesla’s in-house seat manufacturing and lighter-weight materials used in their battery pack and drive units.
New “Tempest” Aero Wheels and Tires
Their newest 8.5 inch-wide aero wheels reduce aerodynamic drag compared to the previous wheels on Model S Long Range, and when paired with a new custom tire specifically engineered to reduce rolling resistance, add a 2% improvement to overall range.
Increased Drive Unit Efficiency
In its rear AC-induction drive unit, they replaced the mechanical oil pump with an electric oil pump that optimizes lubrication independent of vehicle speed to reduce friction. Further improvements to the gearbox in our front permanent magnet synchronous reluctance motors shared with Model 3 and Model Y have resulted in a further increase of 2% more range while driving on the highway.
Maximizing Regenerative Braking
Their newest drive feature, HOLD, blends the motor’s regenerative braking with physical brakes to bring their cars to a stop by easing off of the accelerator pedal. To bring the car to a stop smoothly, regenerative braking now works at a lower speed and deceleration rate, sending more energy back to the battery pack while simultaneously enabling a driving experience like no other car.
Continued Investment in Supercharging
The freedom to travel anywhere is enabled by both range and charging, and their Supercharger Network now encompasses over 17,000 Superchargers worldwide. They’ve deployed V3 Supercharging on three continents, enabling up to a 50% decrease in charging times compared to V2 technology. Tesla owners can travel incredible distances – from the Everglades to Vancouver, the Arctic Circle of Norway to southern Portugal, Hong Kong to Harbin, China – all for a fraction of the cost of gasoline. Put simply, families spend less time than ever charging.
While each of these changes is relatively small in individual impact, their unique ability to introduce them into active manufacturing lines enables significant gains in efficiency, range, and overall value when combined.
Model S Long Range Plus has also recently received a price reduction of $5,000. Paired with these range improvements and gains in efficiency, customers now receive more value than ever when purchasing a new Tesla, and as with their other products, all of their vehicles will continuously improve over time with over-the-air software updates. Order today at Tesla.