2013 Tesla Model S: Coast-to-Coast Trip
June 13, 2014
We're finally going to do it. Photo Editor Kurt Niebuhr and I are preparing to drive our 2013 Tesla Model S from Los Angeles to New York City following the path dictated by the Supercharger network.
Our original goal is simple: depart Los Angeles on Friday night after game five of the Stanley Cup is over and arrive in New York before the puck drops in Madison Square Garden on Monday night for game six. That gives us 69 hours to play with.
The Rangers have some work to do if this is going to pan out. They've got to win game five in Los Angeles. It's all over if the Kings take Friday's game at the Staples Center.
In which case we'll still make the drive. We don't have tickets for game six anyway. It's only just an excuse at this point.
And yes, this trip represents another reason why we just replaced all four tires.
Our route will be slightly shorter than the 3,400-mile path taken by the Tesla Motors team this past January. New Superchargers that have since opened in Nevada and Utah make it unnecessary to follow their path through the Four Corners area. Still, Kurt and I will be covering 3,282 miles.
The Tesla team made their crossing in 76 hours. They had a team of two cars, a sleeper van and a film van. Fifteen engineers and Supercharger staffers in matching jackets made up the caravan. Engineers with intimate knowledge of the Model S were calculating the exact speed to drive and the precise moment to unplug the car.
They used a Pony Express method to keep their drivers fresh. I'm not sure if they pre-staged new drivers up the road or not, but a recently released trio of videos (one, two, three) depicts a substantial effort.
They also had to deal with snow as they traversed Colorado.
Kurt and I will be on our own. We'll take turns driving and sleeping. We don't plan on stopping, except of course, for the two dozen times we'll have to stop to recharge. There will be energy drinks, granola bars and whatever food we can scare up within walking distance from the Superchargers.
My calculations suggest it's possible for us to finish well within our 69-hour time limit. We should get there in plenty of time for the game, if there is one.
Kurt's the photographer, I'll be sending out tweets via Twitter. Follow our progress at @edmunds and @Edmunds_Test. My Instagram screen name is "suspensiontuna".
Will we set a Guinness World Record? I'm not sure I'm up for the paperwork. I'll keep a logbook, I'll turn on location tracking on my iPhone so all my photos are geotagged and I might mount a Vbox in the car.
Or not, Kurt and I want to make the crossing just because.
Dan Edmunds, Director of Vehicle Testing @ 22,888 miles