The Key - 2013 Tesla Model S Long-Term Road Test

2013 Tesla Model S Long-Term Road Test

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2013 Tesla Model S: The Key

February 25, 2013

2013 Tesla Model S

Like virtually everything else having to do with the 2013 Tesla Model S, the folks at Tesla have decided that a normal key wasn't good enough and have given us this.

Look at it. It's slick, it's shiny and it has no visible buttons. It does, however, just like a fresh baby, have a bunch of soft spots on its dome that are made for pressing.

Pressing the front squishy spot opens the frunk. Double tapping the rear "button" opens the powered trunk (it stops with a single tap) and the top one locks/unlocks the door. Holding the middle button down for a few seconds will open all the windows. Of course, with the Tech Package, the Tesla Model S automatically locks/unlocks the doors, so the key may not ever be necessary.

But, with the exception of the faux buttonlessness of it all, it's kind of old hat. What makes this one unique is that there's no spare key hidden inside.

So what do you do when the battery in the fob eventually dies? Easy, you put the key on the passenger-side windshield wiper and then push the handle in, it'll pop out and let you in. To start the car, dump the key in the cupholder.

Mike Magrath, Features Editor @ 450 miles


  • quadricycle quadricycle Posts:

    Give me a key. It doesn't run out of battery. Ever. You really want to impress me? Concentrate on making a decent car, that's all I really ever wanted.

  • remdog remdog Posts:

    Can we get a video of this? I'm struggling to picture it from the description. Sounds cool, weird, and unique, just the thing you guys should be covering. Thanks

  • heliohybrid heliohybrid Posts:

    "Easy, you put the key on the passenger-side windshield wiper and then push the handle in, it'll pop out and let you in." I actually read this twice, because the first time did not make any sense. May we see a video of this? Does the fob have an RFID inside? Can you open any door then or just the front passenger-side door? I am wondering why they put the reader near the passenger-side windshield wiper instead of the driver's side, so that you wouldn't have to walk all the way around the car? Any chance the reader can read the fob from the driver's side windshield wiper? Thanks for adding this car to your fleet. I will be reading every post about it.

  • jacarig jacarig Posts:

    Seems like you could easily lock or unlock a door by accident if you have this key in your pocket or purse. Nissan/Infiniti has the same issue with their Intelligent Key because the buttons are raised and easily pressed.

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