Upload & Sell: On
Hmmm, $92k and 300 miles+/- Now there's a cost-effective transportation solution
If you're like most people, and you need neither 200+ miles each day nor a 4.0-second sprint from zero to sixty, then you can very happily buy the Model S for $50K. You'll get a battery rated for max 160 miles, which in my real-world experience is enough for a comfortable 100 miles driven each day, with a good reserve to avoid any range anxiety.
The only USDOT study of which I am aware (check this link for details) says that only 8% of people in the USA drive more than 70 miles a day for work. I think it's safe to say that the other 92% of drivers still drive less than 100 total miles per day even after adding in trips to the post office, the supermarket, the movies, or taking the kids to school. So even the smallest battery pack has enough oomph for 90% of the population, or more. The only reason to buy more is (a) if you know you need that range or (b) you want the Performance version of the car.
Trust me, even the standard Model S is plenty fast. At 5.6 seconds from zero to sixty, it's faster than my twin-turbo 300HP BMW 335i convertible was (and that lighter, smaller car was known for performance but only managed a 5.9). And because essentially all the torque is available all the time, it responds instantly and the overall feeling of power, precision, and performance is much better than what the numbers would indicate. The Model S -- even the standard Model S -- actually makes the 335 seem slow to respond by comparison.
The fact that I can drive 200 miles for around $8, while my wife's BMW requires $55 to go the same distance, makes a $50,000 Model S actually a much cheaper car to own and operate than the $50,000 BMW 5-series sedan with which it's intended to compete.