The good news just keeps flowing — like electricity from a renewables-infused grid — for electric-auto maker Tesla Motors.
Consumer Reports just gave the Tesla Model S Sedan its highest-ever score for an automobile. The glowing review and sky-high score of 99 out of 100 came in the same week that the 10-year-old auto manufacturer enjoyed its first profitable quarter.
This electric luxury sports car, built by a small automaker based in Palo Alto, Calif., is brimming with innovation, delivers world-class performance, and is interwoven throughout with impressive attention to detail. It’s what Marty McFly might have brought back in place of his DeLorean in “Back to the Future.” The sum total of that effort has earned the Model S the highest score in our Ratings: 99 out of 100. That is far ahead of such direct competitors as the gas-powered Porsche Panamera (84) and the Fisker Karma plug-in hybrid (57).
The Tesla rivets your attention from the start. Simply touching the flush aluminum door handles causes them to slide outward, welcoming you inside. … And as you dip into the throttle, you experience a silent yet potent surge of power that will make many sports cars weep with envy.
A host of safety features, including dual-stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt sensors, side air bags, curtain side impact air bags for front and rear passengers, child safety rear door locks, Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) and Traction Control System (TCS) all contributed the the model’s score — and all are standard on the 2013 Leaf.
“Driver and passenger safety are top priorities for Nissan and the ‘Top Safety Pick’ designation by IIHS reflects the design and innovation that have gone into this car to make it a practical, no-compromise electric vehicle,” explained Erik Gottfried, Nissan’s director of electric vehicle sales and marketing.
It’s clear that electric-car makers aren’t just swapping out internal combustion engines for batteries — they’re putting in the extra effort to truly reimagine a new generation of American automobiles.