2013 Tesla Model S Long-Term Road Test

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2013 Tesla Model S Performance: Uphill, Downhill

July 19, 2013

2013 Tesla Model S

Here's a shot of the Energy Consumption screen after driving up and down a steep hill in Palos Verdes, CA.

The normal fully charged estimated range offered by the Tesla Model S is based on maintaining an average of 300 Wh/mi (Watt-hours per mile), the gray line you see going across the screen. Most of my driving style rests above that line, not usually as high as the average in this photo showing 439.

You can see the mountainous orange peak from when I drove up the hill. Then you can see the deep green valley of my trip back down the hill, using the regenerative braking in the Model S most of the way down.

The estimated range (which you can't see in this photo) at the time I started my downhill trip was 124 miles. That number stayed put until I got to the bottom of the hill. I gained no estimated range back but I didn't "consume" any either, according to the Tesla's display.

I remember taking this exact trip when we had our Mini E test car, and I had gained 7 miles of range on the trip down. These are all estimates, of course, based on how the car is rating your driving at the time.

According to this analysis, if I could drive downhill all the time, I'd have a projected range of 999 miles ;)

Donna DeRosa, Managing Editor

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