It’s possible that Tesla could sunset both vehicles and concentrate on Model 3 and future cars and trucks.
The Model S and Model X were pioneering electric vehicles. If they go away, I’ll miss them.
But I have a lot of memories of both vehicles, which I drove on numerous occasions.
Tesla Model S sedan and Model X SUV sales have been declining for about a year, and both vehicles are getting long in the tooth by automotive standards. The Model S debuted in 2012, while the Model X arrived in 2015.
Car makers usually refresh or redesign their vehicles every two-to-five years, but in Tesla’s case, the updates to the Model S and Model X have been light.
This makes sense because the company’s focus is now on its relatively new compact sedan, the Model 3, and forthcoming vehicles such as the Model Y crossover SUV and a pickup truck. Tesla doesn’t really want to revamp S and X, so when Musk said last week on an earnings conference call that “they’re really niche products,” it was understandable.
“I mean, they’re very expensive, made in low volume,” he continued. “To be totally frank, we’re continuing to make them more for sentimental reasons than anything else. They’re really of minor importance to the future.”
Perhaps, but they were of major importance to Tesla’s past. I drove both, in several different versions, and if Tesla sunsets the vehicles, I’ll miss them.
Here’s a review of my S and X memories:
First up, the Model S.
The all-electric luxury sedan was Tesla’s first clean-sheet design. It was named Motor Trend Car of the Year for 2013.
Tesla teased a “D” version of the Model S in 2014.
It turned out that the “D” was for “dual motor” — an all-wheel-drive version of the sedan.
With AWD came “Insane” and later “Ludicrous Mode” acceleration. The latter, in the top-spec P100D Model S, could outrun some supercars 0-60 mph.
When I visited Tesla’s factory, I was treated to a few laps around its test track in a Model S.