We were never entirely sure why the Tesla Model S had a big, fake grille on its nose. Neither was Tesla it seems, as that unsightly slab of black plastic has been binned for this mid-life facelift.
The front-end styling has been brought in line with the Model X SUV and now features a decorative strip encompassing the Tesla logo. Further down the bumper is a reprofiled vent that feeds cooling air to the battery packs housed in the chassis.
Inside there are two new trim options: ‘figured ash wood’ and ‘dark ash wood’. The ventilation system has been upgraded, too, with the HEPA air filtration system pioneered on the Model X. According to Tesla it scrubs 99.97% of exhaust particulate emissions from the air entering the cabin, along with “effectively all” allergens, bacteria and other contaminants.
The charging system has been revamped, the standard charger boosted from 40 amps to 48 amps, while the top option is now rated at 72 amps. Much faster charging is the result, but only at high-ampage outlets.
Powertrains remain unchanged, not that anyone is complaining about the performance the Model S summons. the top-spec P90D with optional Ludicrous mode makes 762bhp and 713lb/ft, enough for a 0-62mph time of 2.8secs – quicker than most blue chip supercars. Rumours of an even more powerful P100D are unconfirmed.
UK prices start at £53,800 after government grants. Sales and production of the new Model S have already started.
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By Only Motors