Monday, June 22, 2015

Final Test Drive, Auto-pilot & Pulling the Trigger

A truly exciting day!

Partly to figure out the difference in audio packages (and mostly an excuse to drive one again), I dropped by the Tesla store on the way home from work today. Much to my pleasure, I was allowed to drive two different configurations and even got to try out the autopilot.

Oh.. and also, I placed my order!
You know... the little things :)

First up, the auto-pilot.
Wow... that was an experience. Both scary and crazy cool at the same time. I had not realized it, but we tend to drive so much using our subconscious mind. We were following a car with the autopilot engaged to 1 car length (maybe Chelsea, my Owner Advisor was having fun with people's reactions), and I was told to take my feet off the pedals. "Okay, not bad," you say? Well, except a stop sign was directly ahead. You know that automatic foot-stomping you do in the passenger seat while someone else drives? Yeah... I did that, only with a real brake pedal.

Okay, so round two. With a round-about ahead, I tried my hardest to keep my feet planted on the floor. I literally asked Chelsea if I would be held liable in a crash (and I was serious). The car in front starts to slow down to enter the circle... then, so do we. "Okay," I thought... foot starting to twitch toward the brake pedal, hovering and ready. The car leaves the circle, and I suddenly worry about the auto-pilot speeding up while I'm still circling. Nope... holds slow and steady. I'm thinking, "hmm, not bad;" but I wonder when it will speed up again. Next comes my exit from the circle, and I braced for the quick electric acceleration. Nope... the car waits for me to straighten out from the exit, then smoothly gets back up to speed.

The take-away?... It would take some getting used to. Scary, but crazy super cool... and it seems to work very well, actually. But, personally, I'll wait for it to be adopted and tested by more people before I plunk down $3,000 for that option. Less sales tax, up-front, too, that way.

So back to the Tesla store... and we sat down and ordered my new car (I could have done it at home online, but was too excited to wait). They give you a week to make any changes, before the order is confirmed and finalized (at which point, they begin sourcing parts). I paid the deposit, got a cool hat, and came away happier than a kid in a toy store. It's amazing to feel that young again when you're in your 30s and usually stoic.

So what did I order, exactly?
  • 2015 Model S 70D
  • Black exterior w/gray leather next-generation seats
  • All-glass panoramic roof
  • Smart air-suspension
Those are the basics... we'll see what the next few days do to change my mind on anything?! That's if I can resist not hitting the "confirm" button out of impatience.

Not sure, yet, if I'll make any changes. I'm not yet 100% on the interior color, though. Kinda worried about the color getting dye transfer from clothing.

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