Tesla Amps Up Model S Defense In Advance of Earnings Report


  • Tesla Model S Picture

    Tesla Model S Picture

    Tesla Motors is touting a CNN retest of a controversial New York Times test-drive. | February 15, 2013

Just the Facts:
  • Tesla Motors continued its defense of the Model S and its Supercharger stations on Friday, touting the re-creation of a controversial New York Times test-drive by CNN.
  • Tesla tweeted "CNN retests the route!"
  • Tesla is due to report its fourth quarter 2012 financial results on February 20.

PALO ALTO, California — Tesla Motors continued its defense of the Model S and its Supercharger stations on Friday, touting the re-creation of a controversial New York Times test-drive by CNN.

Tesla tweeted "CNN retests the route!"

CNNMoney's Peter Valdes-Dapena asked in a written report: "Can a Tesla Model S make it from Washington D.C. to New England without riding on a flatbed truck?"

The flatbed truck is a reference to a recent negative review of the Model S and Tesla's new East Coast Superchargers by New York Times reporter John M. Broder.

CNN reported on Friday that it completed a similar test drive of the route from D.C. to Boston in a Tesla Model S without incident with 96 miles to spare.

Valdes-Dapena acknowledged the war of words between the newspaper and Tesla in his review.

"The electric luxury car recently had some trouble making the long-haul trip up the Eastern Seaboard, running out of juice during a test drive conducted by the New York Times," he wrote. "The subsequent review — which affected Tesla's share price — set off a war of words between the paper and Tesla CEO Elon Musk."

"In the end, I made it — and it wasn't that hard," Valdes-Dapena wrote.

Musk practically crowed about the CNN trip on Twitter.

"Genius move," tweeted Musk on Friday. "Well, to be fair, they did use the controversial gimmick of actually charging up the car."

He also tweeted: "How can CNN drive even further than Broder (normal speed & temp) and arrive with range to spare?"

Musk disputes Broder's account of the test-drive, in which the reporter said the car could not hold a charge in cold weather, leaving him stranded and in need of help. Tesla published the vehicle logs of the drive this week, accusing Broder of sabotaging the test.

Broder defended his review in a Thursday posting on the Wheels blog of The New York Times.

"Elon Musk, the chief executive of Tesla Motors, has now responded in detail to the account of my test drive of his Model S electric car, using the company's new East Coast Superchargers, that was published in The Times on Feb. 10," Broder wrote. "His broadest charge is that I consciously set out to sabotage the test. That is not so. I was delighted to receive the assignment to try out the company's new East Coast Supercharger network and as I previously noted in no way anticipated — or deliberately caused — the troubles I encountered."

Tesla is due to report its fourth quarter 2012 financial results on February 20.

Edmunds says: Tesla Motors is facing a big week next week — one that has little to do with what journalists say or don't say about its Model S.

Comments

  • jeffinoh jeffinoh Posts:

    So CNN proved that at least 50% of drivers will make it to their destination. At least the Tesla doesn't explode in a fireball when wet. Let's get Fisker all worked up too.

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