Upload & Sell: On
Jeff, I just finished a 3200 mile road trip, passing through Las Vegas and Barstow both ways. Temperatures were in the 100's (I saw 108º on Baker's big thermometer) and the Model S handled it without flinching: I was comfortably cool and the car didn't impose any performance limits. Tesla's fundamental IP is in the care and feeding of large battery packs, so they know how to deal with climate extremes quite well. The battery pack is liquid-cooled and its internal temperature is maintained within a fairly narrow temperature band using active cooling (or heating, when it's cold out), something Nissan failed to do in the Leaf, which is why so many Leaf owners in Phoenix are frustrated with their cars: they're losing half their published range as the battery packs fry in the desert heat. Interestingly, pack heating and cabin climate control in sub-freezing weather diminishes range much more than pack cooling and A/C in summer; I hardly notice the consumption increase on even the hottest days.
Wrei, we're talking about the 85 kWh battery pack. It comes with an 8-year, unlimited mileage warranty, and the latest real-world data from Tesla owners (one guy I know personally has 94,000 miles on his S) suggest that at 8 years and 150,000 miles, the 85 kWh pack will still charge to at least 80% of its original capacity. Lithium ion batteries degrade slowly with both use and time, but the aging hit comes mostly up front, in the first year, and Tesla's battery management protocols ensure that the biggest battery killers--overcharging, and holding a high charge state at high internal temperatures--are not a factor.
I say it often, and I'll say it again here: the Model S is the best automobile I have ever owned, period...and by a country mile. People focus on the perceived shortcomings of driving an EV--not understanding that charging and range are non-issues for nearly all real-world driving patterns--and ignore its real advantages: the fantastic driving experience, low operating cost and extreme mechanical simplicity. Let this next fact sink in for a minute: my car's drivetrain has six moving parts.