Tesla Breaks Major EV Range Record

Model S

Image: Tesla

In a major milestone for electric cars, Tesla announced yesterday that it has cracked the 400-mile barrier, a first for a production electric vehicle sold to the public. The company says the EPA will officially rate the new Long Range Plus version of the Model S for a 402-mile range.

The new range is due in part to improvements in the vehicle’s weight, wheel drag, drive unit efficiency and updated regenerative braking.

Why This Matters: Three out of four Americans believe that EVs are the cars of the future, however, 58% of drivers are afraid that they will run out of power before being able to charge their vehicle, while another 49% fear the low availability of charging stations.

In order for more Americans to warm up to EVs enough to actually purchase them, they’ll have to get out of their comfort zones. Most people who buy an EV, don’t go back to an internal combustion engine, which is a telling sign. And while most Tesla models are luxury vehicles, the company helps influence the entire EV market and pushes the bounds of what’s possible.

  • 40 million Americans say they will at least consider an electric vehicle for their next car, according to AAA. That means that records like this being broken by Tesla continue to change the perception of EVs, from a peculiar niche vehicle to a desirable consumer product. 
  • Automakers not named Tesla must continue to push the perception barrier, but it’s a winnable fight.

Charing Woes: Not all states have adequate charging stations for EVs, which prevents Americans from switching to an EV as a primary vehicle. We wrote earlier this week that the state of Florida plans to make a major investment to build an EV charging network across the state but around the world, electric charge ports have soared to 7.3 million.

China and Germany have prioritized EV infrastructure as part of their COVID-19 recovery efforts, the United States needs to do the same.

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