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Stephen Pace  

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  • About That BMW i5 And Its Impact On Tesla [View article]
    @Anton: You talk to the Audi guys more often than me, but perhaps you can confirm what Audi really means by "swappable":

    Thanks to the modular design of the new MMI system, Audi will not have to wait an entire product cycle to replace the Nvidia graphics chip used in the A3, Halliger said. Instead, that could happen halfway through the A3’s life cycle -- perhaps during its mid-cycle facelift, in two or three years.

    I take that to mean it is easy for Audi to make the change production-wise, not that they will allow end users to do it. Knowing Audi pricing such a change would likely also be cost prohibitive to end consumers anyway. For the record, I've never liked Audi's rotating knob setup.

    On the Tesla, the hardware for 3G is easily swappable for 4G, but since Tesla is paying for the connection for the first 4 years, most people haven't wanted to mess with it. Nvidia hardware is behind the touchscreen, though--not sure how easy it would be to change but my guess is 'not'. I will add it to my list to ask.
    Apr 27, 2015. 03:25 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • About That BMW i5 And Its Impact On Tesla [View article]
    @Anton Wahlman: Short answer on Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, I don't know, but "not soon enough." I have played around with Pioneer's aftermarket implementation and they have done a great job. Texting support is one area where Tesla is seriously behind. Overall, I've been disappointed with Tesla's delay in the SDK and the longer it goes, the more I worry that my NVIDIA Tegra circa 2012 is not going to be up to the task and potentially won't support all or any of the new functionality that is coming. As someone in the technology field, I completely understand that at some point, Tesla will have to reduce support for us 'old folks' but hopefully there will be a retrofit option for a price that isn't cost prohibitive (like the parking sensors). Model X could be the line in the sand. I will visit Tesla in July and will hopefully learn more then.
    Apr 27, 2015. 12:36 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • About That BMW i5 And Its Impact On Tesla [View article]
    @Anton Wahlman: Sounds like a lot of variants that are going to bring some headaches to dealers. Which to buy for them? BEVs? Probably not since they don't really believe in them. They'll likely buy 1 BEV 'just in case' with the rest PHEVs and push buyers to the PHEVs using all of their usual FUD. They'll use the fact they couldn't sell the one BEV as an argument for not ordering any more, despite it wasn't the color the person coming in wanted. Meanwhile Tesla lets people get whatever color and options they want and it will show up at their house (albeit a month later). If they ever catch up with demand, they could even stage some of the cars regionally to reduce wait time for the people who need a car immediately. The larger store template like the new Utah one (although being temporarily shuttered by the anti-free marketers) could hold inventory directly.

    Unrelated, I swapped my Model S for a VW e-Golf last week for a day. Solid car, but the infotainment was stone age. Beyond terrible. My favorite was the map showed gas stations by default. Here is where not having on demand test drives in Texas can hurt Tesla. I'm sure the VW had decent acceleration, but being used to a Model S (non-performance), it actually seems like something could be wrong with it. BMW better bring it with the i5 because if they don't, if I was Tesla, I would put together a drive event with comparable vehicles and let the car do the talking. You know Elon isn't going to let the Model ≡ out the door without at least 0-60 in 5s (with performance variants getting sub 3s).
    Apr 27, 2015. 10:37 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • When It Comes To Tesla, Read Between The Lines [View article]
    @Logic Man: There are no drawings of the Model 3 out from Tesla. The only drawings are speculation from fans.
    Apr 24, 2015. 01:09 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • When It Comes To Tesla, Read Between The Lines [View article]
    @GaltMachine: It costs as much money to make an ugly car as it does a beautiful one--might as well go for the beautiful option. I expect people will like Model ≡, the sedan version of it anyway. Personally, I don't like the CUV look, so I still think Model S looks a lot better than Model X. Model ≡ CUV is still likely to look worse (to me), but the tech is likely to smoke whatever GM is shipping with the 'Bolt' either way.
    Apr 24, 2015. 12:01 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gas prices a factor in electric vehicle trade-ins [View news story]
    @GaltMachine: Gas prices are not a factor for current Tesla sales for Model S and the pending Model X. They may be a factor in Model 3, at least for the stripped down $35k version, but nicely optioned to $45-50k even then gas prices are not likely to be the primary driver for sales. Lower priced cars like the Leaf and Prius might be affected more.
    Apr 22, 2015. 02:42 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla to unveil home, utility batteries in rollout next week [View news story]
    @PVGO: If they are under $5k and provide a decent amount of backup power, I plan to go for it as well. I've been meaning to get a natural gas whole home backup for my fairly frequent outages, but routing the gas to where I would need to put it is a giant pain which includes removing some concrete. If this provided 5-6 hours of backup it would meet 95% of my need for likely half the cost.

    Sort of like this guy:

    Being able to SuperCharge at home (not needed, but one of the other rumors) would be cool as well.
    Apr 21, 2015. 08:34 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla Subsidies In Danger: The Trend Is Not Its Friend [View article]
    @Davewmart: I don't understand this comment: "Subsidy for electric vehicles does not initially come from a tax rebate claim, but as a direct money off at point of sales, and so advantages a much wider segment of the population." If I get $7500 off my taxes when I file, how is that different than getting $7500 off of the cost of purchase? Few people that aren't already paying $7500 in taxes are buying a new EV, much less a Tesla. I don't see a realistic difference.
    Apr 21, 2015. 04:51 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla Subsidies In Danger: The Trend Is Not Its Friend [View article]
    @JD in NJ: I don't know about business opportunity, but in Houston and Washington DC, picking up strangers so you can ride in the HOV is very common. See this story:
    Apr 21, 2015. 04:43 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's The One Way Tesla Can Survive [View article]
    @Montana Skeptic The last time I talked to the Woodlands guy he still loved the car. Keep in mind that traffic jams are no problem--speed is the range killer, so slow speed stop and go greatly extends your range. Even the Houston owners that have had issues (we have around 1000 cars in the Greater Houston area so there have certainly been some) still love the car since Tesla makes the repairs so painless. I know at least two who traded their P85 for a P85D already (taking a trade in hit) so that tells you something.

    Funny story, completely unrelated, is that the City of Houston bought some Leafs but skimped on the DC recharge port. When Houston annexed Kingwood, they now have city workers that have to go out there (say, a CPS investigator) who can't make it back. Because they skimped on the port, they have to recharge for hours at a Cracker Barrel before heading back. I asked about retrofitting the DC port but apparently Nissan won't do it (or it is cost prohibitive).
    Apr 21, 2015. 03:20 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's The One Way Tesla Can Survive [View article]
    @robiniv: What will the price of a used Tesla Model 3 be in 2020? Never say never.
    Apr 20, 2015. 11:42 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's The One Way Tesla Can Survive [View article]
    I'll just point out that A) 135 kW != 50 kW and B) Teslas can use all of the existing DC chargers IN ADDITION to the Tesla network. Obviously the Tesla network is much more useful for long distance travel (as LT said today, long distance travel is 'kludgey' today, imagine how much MORE kludgey at 50 kW than 135 kW) but these other DCs are fine for destination chargers. I've got a CHAdeMO adapter for my Model S and it works fine. What's more, eVgo seems to do a good job at maintaining their chargers (each one has direct monitoring) as compared to others like Blink.
    Apr 20, 2015. 11:40 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bloomberg: Google had $6B deal to buy Tesla in 2013 [View news story]
    Question: does this mean that everyone shorting the stock back then that were so sure Tesla would fold would have still not have profited from Tesla's struggles? If so, does this seems to provide even more reason not to short the stock, because there are 'white knights' waiting in the background to save it even in worst case scenarios (like the outsized coverage of three fires where no one was hurt)?
    Apr 20, 2015. 11:31 AM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's The One Way Tesla Can Survive [View article]
    @ogmodnar: As an EV driver for the last 2.5 years, I can attest that most of the charging points in the US now were installed because they were able to get their owners a write-off and declare their building 'green' (the LEED standard has a tick box for EV charging). It meant that most were the crappiest, slowest units available, and in many ways, their installation were worse than doing nothing. Why? Because the wiring was sub-par and as speeds increase, they have to be completely rewired for higher amp charging. If they had waited for better chargers to arrive like ClipperCreek 100s, they could have put the correct wiring in to start. I've plugged into Blink chargers that limited me to 23 amps even though they were supposed to provide 30 amps which is still way too slow. Good luck doing a cross country trip when your recharge gets you 14 miles back per hour.
    Apr 20, 2015. 09:27 AM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's The One Way Tesla Can Survive [View article]
    @fiwiki: I doubt Audi would react well to the $2k per vehicle that Tesla would charge them to do that, but I agree, I look forward to the first company that decides that is the way to go.
    Apr 20, 2015. 09:21 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment