Tesla Motors has taken the wraps off its Australian dual-motor Model S range, expanding the line-up from two rear-wheel-drive options to five models, including two rear- and three all-wheel-drive variants.
The entry-level all-wheel-drive Tesla is the Model S 70D, which is priced from $113,300 (before on-road costs) and features a dual-motor 245kW configuration that claims a 442km range, 5.4-second 0-100km/h time and 225km/h top speed.
Next up is the Model S 85D, which jumps to $128,200 and increases dual-motor power output to 311kW. The 85D also ups range to 528km and top speed to 250km/h, while reducing the 70D's 0-100km/h time to 4.4 seconds.
Performance freaks will go directly to the fastest model in the Model S range, though, the P85D. Starting from $157,000, the flagship four-wheel-drive variant splits the dual-motor's power, with 375kW going to the rear wheels and 192kW to the fronts. While the range reduces to 491km, 0-100km/h acceleration jumps to a seriously impressive 3.3 seconds — that's supercar territory.
If that's not quite quick enough — a crazy thought, I know — buyers can option 'Ludicrous Mode' for $14,300. Reducing the 0-100km/h sprint by 10 per cent to 3.0 seconds, it also helps the Model S P85D achieve a quarter mile time of 10.9 seconds. To put that into perspective, the entirely electric four-door sedan is quicker from standstill to 100km/h than a Ferrari Enzo, Porsche 911 Turbo and McLaren F1.
Ludicrous Mode must be optioned with the range upgrade, which features a larger battery pack (an increase from 85kWh to 90kWh) and allows the car to achieve a quicker acceleration time thanks to a 'space age' fuse technology. To date the Model S P85D has only been capable of drawing up to 1300A from the vehicle's battery packs safely. Any higher and the fuse designed to limit current draw would blow.
Tesla Motors developed an intelligent fuse that uses onboard electronics and a small lithium-ion battery to detect with greater accuracy when the car is about to reach its current limit. As a result, Tesla has been able to push that limit higher, giving the car an ability to draw up to 1500A, which results in faster acceleration.
Notable options available across the range include Tesla'a AutoPilot package ($3600), which adds traffic-aware cruise control, lane keeping with automatic steering, self-parking and automatic high beams; air suspension with variable height and firmness control ($3600); a premium 12-speaker sound system ($3600) and a Subzero weather package ($1450), which adds rear seat heating, wiper blade defrosters, washer nozzle heaters and a heated steering wheel.
Another option available to drivers is a range upgrade from an 85kWh battery pack to 90kWh. This boosts range by six per cent and is available on both rear- and all-wheel-drive 85D and P85D models for $4300. It also adds a badge on the back that reads '90D'.
Drivers opting for rear-wheel-drive Model S vehicles can still choose from the Model S 70D, which is priced from $106,100 and features an electric motor that produces 235kW of power and moves from 0-100km/h in 5.8 seconds and on to a top speed of 225km/h. Range sits at 420km.
The next step up is the Model S 85, which is priced from $121,000 and uses a single rear-wheel-driven electric motor that produces 278kW of power and claims 0-100km/h in 5.6 seconds and a range of 502km.
Standard features across the range include satellite navigation, front and rear parking sensors, keyless entry and start, daytime running lights, autonomous emergency braking, blind-spot monitoring, lane departure warning, an eight-year/unlimited kilometre battery warranty and free supercharger network access.
The entire Tesla Model S range recently achieved a five star ANCAP safety rating, making it one of the safest cars in the country.
Additionally, Tesla recently announced the opening of three supercharger stations in Australia (two in Sydney, one in Melbourne), giving Model S owners the ability to charge their Model S with 120kW of power and 270km of range in 30 minutes.
The Tesla Model S dual-motor range is available for order through the Tesla Motors website. The current wait time for buyers placing an order today is around four months. Buyers that purchase their Model S P85D can later have Ludicrous Mode fitted at their local Tesla workshop.