I took a test drive in a 70D at the Yorkdale Tesla in North York last Tuesday and I was floored… rather, seated by how much torque the cars can instantaneously put out. I was thrown back into my seat just like a roller coaster, but whenever I wanted.
The Tesla is a unit of magnetic flux density. I argue it should also be a unit of acceleration.
When I walked into the store, I saw two cars and a chassis in the middle of the floor. The chassis showed the placement of (what I believe to be) a single motor unit at the rear axle, along with the suspension and other nifty looking parts.
I also snapped a pic of the large touch screen display inside the car, which is a fully functioning computer that even includes a web browser. The car comes with 4 years of 3G connectivity so you can find places to eat or use Google Maps if your phone is dead or you don’t have a dedicated GPS module.
I checked in with the rep who recommended the 70D for a first-time electric driver like me, and he took me to the garage from which we launched out just like in a James Bond movie.
The rep (name, privacy, innocent, etc) was happy to explain all the cool features of the car, everything from the regenerative braking to the autopilot and notification features; as he was talking, he got distracted and accidentally triggered the collision avoidance system by getting a bit too close too fast to a stopped car. When the car detects that you’re going too fast towards a stopped car at a traffic light, it’ll make a beeping noise and apply the brakes for you. In that situation normally you’d be worried, but honestly that was a perfect demonstration.
Other features include vibrating the steering wheel if you drift sideways over the lane marks without signaling; I definitely triggered this a couple of times with how packed the roads were.
When we reached a nearby residential area, that’s when he started to floor it. Did I mention how quiet this was? All you can hear is a faint “whirrrr…” as you rocket to 70 km/h in about 3 seconds. I was so excited I couldn’t say anything, I just had this big dumb smile on my face in anticipation of my turn.
Then we changed places and I was in control! A quick rundown of what I learned about how to start and drive it:
- There are no sequential gears to shift through (not needed).
- Drive, neutral, and reverse are controlled by a lever that sits where your windshield wiper controls would be.
- To engage it in park, simply press a button on the gear selector.
- To start it, put your foot on the brake until lights on your main display light up; this lets the car know that you’re ready to go.
- Then hit the pedal and get knocked back into your seat!
It’s been said a thousand times by Tesla and reviewers, but the torque is really instantaneous. And it’s consistent too; since you don’t need to shift gears, it’ll just keep accelerating and accelerating until you take your foot off the pedal. And when you do, regenerative braking kicks in; generators are motors that turn mechanical energy into electrical energy. I got to play with the car around suburbs, although there were speed bumps that necessitated braking every so often (probably because of the Teslas).
Then I got to take it on the highway. You know those guys in their loud cars that pass people no matter what lane they’re in? Yeah, that was me. ☆*:.｡.o(≧▽≦)o .｡.:*☆ I almost missed an exit so I had to gun it to make it into the ramp; probably couldn’t have done that with a typical car!
We returned to the residential area and I gave the car back over. I snapped a video of the rep accelerating from 0 to Very Fast™ before we reached a speed bump:
I want one. When can I afford one? Oh God please let me get a high-paying and secure job so I never have to pay for gas again. _:(´□`」 ∠):_