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2018 Tesla Model S Sedan

#1
in Fullsize sedans
2018 MODEL

$74,500 - $94,000

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Overview

Remember the days when an electric car meant owning a glorified bike? Well, Mr. Musk and his Teslas are here to prove that burning gas is not the only way go fast. Introducing the California-made 2018 Tesla Model S. This luxury large car offers unparalleled performance while still being friendly to nature.

The 2018 Tesla Model S starts at $74,500 and goes up to $135,000 for the top P100D model. It has a 75Kwh battery for the base model and a 100KWh battery for the upper two trims. AWD drive is standard for 2018, which means each Model S is fitted with dual motors, one for front wheels and one for the rear ones.

Although no electric car can even match Tesla's performance, not many gas cars can provide the same performance in a similar price range either. Sure, there are cars with a more upscale cabin, but Tesla's performance and hi-tech gadgets push it further than any car has gone before.

See detailed review »

Pros

Longest range of any EV

Ludicrously quick acceleration

Large trunk and "frunk' offer plenty of cargo storage

Advanced technology that's decades ahead of other brands

No engine means quieter cabin

Cons

Cabin not as upscale as similarly priced rivals

Small dealer network, so the service centers are few

Takes almost 30 minutes to be fully charged from Tesla Superchargers

No Apple CarPlay or Android Auto

Rear-seat headroom is a bit tight

What's New?

Tesla rolls out over-the-air updates that directly sync with your car's software and electronics.


Features

Power

518 hp

387 torq

MPG

102 city

105 hwy

Engine

75kwh motor cyl

transmission

Direct Drive

drivetrain

all wheel drive

0 to 60

4.2



Styles

 2018 Tesla Model S Sedan in Solid Black color  2018 Tesla Model S Sedan in Red Multi-Coat color  2018 Tesla Model S Sedan in Pearl White Multi-Coat color  2018 Tesla Model S Sedan in Midnight Silver Metallic color  2018 Tesla Model S Sedan in Deep Blue Metallic color
Solid Black

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

8.1

Engine

8.9

Fuel Economy

9.4

Interior

8.3

Exterior

8.9

Safety

8.1

Driving

9.6

8.8

OVERALL RATING

Variant Name

MSRP


 2018 Tesla Model S Sedan 75D

75D

Fuel: Electric fuel, Transmission: Manual, Seats: 5

$74,500

Configurations
75D 4dr Sedan AWD (electric DD)
Seating: 5 HP: 518 -hp
Torque: 387 lbs.-ft. MPG(City/Combined/Highway): MPG(102/103/105)

 2018 Tesla Model S Sedan 100D

100D

Fuel: Electric fuel, Transmission: Manual, Seats: 5

$94,000

Configurations
100D 4dr Sedan AWD (electric DD)
Seating: 5 MPG(City/Combined/Highway): MPG(101/102/102)

Expert Review


carhp editor Last updated 26 days ago

8.8

Overall Rating


8.1/10
Features

 

8.9/10
Engine

 

9.4/10
Fuel Economy

 

8.3/10
Interior

 

8.9/10
Exterior

 

8.1/10
Safety

 
 
 

The 2018 Tesla Model S starts at $74,500 and goes up to $135,000 for the top P100D model. It has a 75Kwh battery for the base model and a 100KWh battery for the upper two trims. AWD drive is standard for 2018, which means each Model S is fitted with dual motors, one for front wheels and one for the rear ones.

Although no electric car can even match Tesla’s performance, not many gas cars can provide the same performance in a similar price range either. Sure, there are cars with a more upscale cabin, but Tesla’s performance and hi-tech gadgets push it further than any car has gone before.

Features

8.1/10

The 2018 Tesla Model S is a 5/7 passenger luxury sedan available in three trim levels: 75D, 100D, and P100D. The numbers indicate the battery’s kilowatt-hour capacity, impacting its range. The ‘D’ denotes the dual-motor AWD, which is standard for 2018.

Since the 3 trims essentially differ only in battery performance, there’s a single 2018 Tesla Model S that the buyers can upgrade with various packages and increased battery performance.

Trims 75D 100D P100D
MSRP $74,500 $94,000 $135,000
Features
  • Smart air suspension with GPS memory for automatically raising and lowering ride height
  • Power liftgate
  • Keyless entry with lighted, self-presenting door handles
  • Ambient interior lighting
  • Heated front seats

          75D plus:

  • Premium Upgrade Package

           100D plus

  • Choice of a premium interior with any decor, including carbon fiber
  • XM Satellite radio capability when paired with sunroof

 

We Recommend

Choosing between the three trims depends on your travel needs. For everyday drives, the Model S 75D would suit you perfectly. It is the perfect balance of cost to performance. If you want the maximum range, moving to 100D would add 76 miles, but has a massive jump in price.

Amongst upgradable packages, the Enhanced Autopilot and Full Self-Driving Capability are recommended. Although the Full Self-Driving Capability option is not currently in operation, when it does, do you wanna be the guy who bought a Tesla that can’t drive itself?.

Engine

8.9/10

""Good" really undersells it; the Tesla Model S is an outstanding car. It has better acceleration than almost any car on the road, it's far more nimble than many large cars, and it gets the excellent efficiency you want from an EV."- Cars.US News

The 2018 Tesla Model S is available with a 75KWh battery or a 100KWh battery. AWD is standard for 2018, which means each Model S uses dual motors, one for the front wheels and one for the back. These dual motors let the Model S reach power speeds in seconds, breaking the stigma of being tardy machines that electric cars were stuck with for so long.

Battery and Motor

The 2018 Tesla Model S has two battery options, 75 KWh, and 100KWh. The 75D trim uses the 75 KWh with dual motors. The 100D and P100D both use the 100KWh battery, but the P100D uses a larger high-performance motor to power the rear wheels.

AWD is standard for 2018, with one motor powering the front wheels and one powering the rear. Model S digitally and independently controls torque to the front and rear wheels. This result is a better traction control in every condition. To achieve the ‘ludicrous’ acceleration, P100D Model S pairs a high-performance rear motor with a high-efficiency front motor.

Models Tesla Model S (75D) Porsche Panamera 4 (E-Hybrid) Audi A7
MSRP $74,500 $99,600 $69,700
Engine / Motor 75KW electric motor 2.9L Twin-Turbocharged V6 -including an electric motor Intercooled Supercharger Premium Unleaded V-6 3.0 L/183
Transmission 1-speed automatic 8-speed automatic 7-speed dual-clutch automatic
Power 518 hp 462 hp 340 hp
Torque 387 lb-ft 516 lb-ft 325 lb-ft

The closest a hybrid car comes to matching Tesla’s power is the Porsche Panamera 4 (E-Hybrid). With 462hp, Panamera is 56hp shy of Model S’s motor power. In the torque department, the Panamera surpasses the Model S with its 516 lb.-ft. of torque. This comes at a price, though. The Panamera’s base price is set at a staggering $100,000

Another luxury sedan priced similarly to Model S is Audi’s A7. Although A7 is not a hybrid, the Model S is not here to just play with the electric boys, it’s here compete with all the top dogs in the market. The A7 is $5,000 cheaper than the 2018 Tesla Model S, but cannot match it in terms of power or torque.

Acceleration

The 2018 Tesla Model S does quite well in the acceleration department. For a vehicle this size, the MODEL S has brisk acceleration and remarkable handling. Whether it’s the open roads or a stop sign, Tesla’s performance based sedan will always satisfy your speed needs.

Models Tesla Model S (75D) Porsche Panamera 4 (E-Hybrid) Audi A7 Sportback (Premium Plus)
0-60 MPH 4.2 sec 4.4 sec 5.2 sec
Quarter mile 10.7 sec @ 119.4 mph 11.6 sec @ 100 mph 13.3 sec @ 104.8 mph
Engine Electric Motor 2.9L Hybrid 3.0L
Emission (Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year) 0 2.5 7.7

The 2018 Tesla Model S, being fully electric, doesn’t have problems with turbo lag or shift delays. The moment you floor the pedal, the Model S flies with the quickness of a falcon and the quietness of a ninja. Model S takes just 4.2 seconds to reach 60mph from zero. In its ‘Insane mode’, it takes just 3.5 seconds! The Panamera follows with a time of 4.4 seconds. Tesla’s a whole second later than the Model S.

At the quarter mile mark, the Model S stretches its lead with a time of 10.7 seconds @ 119 mph. The Panamera takes 11.6 seconds to reach the distance. The A7, though with a greater speed than the Panamera, takes 13.3 seconds.

Braking

The 2018 Tesla Model S uses regenerative braking while routine deceleration to get the best output. Panic stops are stable and consistent, and quite short for a vehicle this heavy. Just like the acceleration pedal (can’t call it ‘gas’ pedal now, can we?), the brake pedal gives a more predictable feel as compared to some other electric vehicles.

Model Tesla Model S (75D) Porsche Panamera 4 (E-Hybrid) Audi A7 Sportback (Premium Plus)
Brake Front (in.) 14 15.3 14.0
Brake Rear (in.) 14.4 14.3 13.0
Curb Weight (lbs.) 4647 4787 4255
60-0 MPH (ft.) 102 103 109

The Model S takes just 102 feet to come to a halt from 60 mph. That’s impressive for a vehicle this heavy. This is possible thanks to Tesla’s sticky summer tires and its able regenerative brakes. Heavier than the Model S is the Porsche Panamera. Yet, it also takes just a foot more than the Model S.

Fuel Economy

9.4/10

The Tesla Model S has redefined the limits of an electric car. It has the longest range of any electric vehicle in the market. The S100D model got an update in 2017 that enables it to travel up to 335 miles on a single charge. The P100D can do 315 miles.

Model Tesla Model S (75D) Porsche Panamera 4 (E-Hybrid) Audi A7 Sportback (Premium Plus)
MPG e (City) 102 N/A 20
MPG e (Highway) 105 N/A 29
MPG e (Combined) N/A N/A 24
Range 259 miles (Fully Charged) 22 miles (electric power only) N/A

The Porsche has not released the official EPA ratings for the Porsche, but it is safe to say that they won’t surpass Tesla’s benchmark. What we do know is that the Panamera can travel 22 miles on electric charge alone. Impressive, not in front of Tesla, though. The A7 has no hybrid version, so its average gas mileage is puny in front of Tesla’s numbers.

Interior

8.3/10

“The Tesla’s interior is a very special place to spend time, with a wide-open feel and lovely materials. Owing to the advanced features in this car, there is a bit of a learning curve. But Tesla focused on the user interface, and it shows” – Edmunds

The most eye-catching aspect of the Tesla Model S’s cabin is its massive 17-inch touchscreen that fills up most of the dashboard. This screen houses the climate controls, infotainment, and all of the vehicle’s settings. The screen is highly interactive and quicker than an iPad. No other maker even comes close to the benchmark set by Tesla for in-cabin technology. The seats are comfortable and provide with excellent visibility. But the material quality could use a little help. For a car that costs as much as a Tesla, other manufacturers are able to provide a much more refined interior for the same price.

Seating and Comfort

The 2018 Tesla Model S comes standard with leatherette seats that are heated and 12-way power adjustable in the front. Buyers have the option of upgrading to leather seats, heated rear seats, heated steering wheel, and two rear-facing jump seat for small children.

Model Tesla Model S (75D) Porsche Panamera 4 (E-Hybrid) Audi A7 Sportback (Premium Plus)
Passenger capacity 5+(2 children) 4 4
Passenger Volume(ft cube) 120.0 122.0 118
Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.) 38.8/57.7/42.7 38.0/51.9/41.9 36.9/57.2/41.3

Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

35.3/55.0/35.4 38.2/51.7/39.2 36.6/55.9/37.0

Passenger comfort is excellent in the front. In the second row, the sloping roofline hinders the headroom for taller passengers. Another issue is the seating angle in the second row. Since the floor is raised due to the arrangement of the batteries, the knees are raised, which isn’t ideal for long journeys. The optional rear-facing seats are only suited for small children.

Interior Features

Here is a list of the standout features in the 2018 Tesla Model S’s cabin:

  • automatic climate control
  • 17-inch touchscreen
  • Bluetooth
  • Two USB ports
  • HD Radio
  • Navigation
  • Front and rear parking sensors
  • Front- and rearview cameras
  • Lane departure warning
  • Blind spot monitoring

Some optional features include:

  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Lane keep assist
  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Cabin air filter system
  • Adaptive headlights
  • Power liftgate
  • Quick connection phone dock
  • 12-speaker premium sound system
  • Panoramic glass roof
  • Sunroof

Infotainment

The only thing that can match Tesla’s impressive speed and acceleration is its infotainment system. The 17-inch touchscreen in your one-stop to control all of the car’s functions. From infotainment to climate control, to all functions of the car, all are integrated into the super-easy and super-responsive touchscreen.

The standard system comes with the 17-inch screen, Bluetooth, two USB ports, HD Radio, and navigation. Buyers have the option of upgrading to a 12 speaker premium sound system.

The benefit of having no engine is that it frees up space in the hood of the car. Tesla uses this space to provide a secondary front trunk, or as they like to call it ‘frunk’, that adds 5.3 cubic feet of space. The rare trunk can hold 26.3 cubic feet worth of luggage. The rear seats fold down to open up 58.1 cubic feet of storage. The rear seats don’t fold completely flat, which hinders sliding luggage to the back.

Model Tesla Model S (75D) Porsche Panamera 4 (E-Hybrid) Audi A7 Sportback (Premium Plus)
Trunk volume (ft3) 31.6 (Trunk+Frunk) 14.3 24.5

The 2018 Tesla Model S is practically a hatchback. With a total volume of 31.6 cubic feet, it is miles ahead of the rivals. While the Panamera only offers 14.3 cubic feet of storage, the A7 boasts 24.5 cubic feet. That’s impressive, but not in front of the Tesla.

Exterior

8.9/10

"The Tesla’s clean, uncluttered lines debuted back in 2012, and it immediately became one of the most striking cars on the road. It still is."- KBB

The Tesla cars brought forth a revolution in the way people thought about electric cars, and their simple and uncluttered design set them apart just as much as their capabilities with an electric motor. Till 2016, the Model S wore a faux grille which is now ditched for a more daring grille-less design along with revised headlights.

Model Tesla Model S (75D) Porsche Panamera 4 (E-Hybrid) Audi A7 Sportback (Premium Plus)
Curb weight (lbs.) 4647 4787 4255
Length(in) 196.0 198.8 196.2
Width(in) 77.3 76.3 84.2
Height(in) 56.5 56.0 55.9
Ground clearance(in) 4.6 5.3 4.4
Wheelbase(in) 16.5 116.1 114.7
Track width(in) F/R 65.4/66.9 65.8/65.0 64.7/64.4

From the side, the sloping roofline makes the Model S look more like a practical hatchback than a sedan. You won’t find any door-handles anywhere, but when you approach the car with the key fob, the retractable handles emerge out for you. Talk about futuristic!

In the rear, the simple yet daring and classy look continues. The taillights hold another secret, the recharging port is actually hidden behind the taillight, so as to not be a constant freckle on an otherwise clean design.

Exterior Features

Some of the exterior features include:

  • Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
  • Three-position dynamic LED turning lights
  • LED fog lights
  • Retractable door handles
  • Power folding, heated side mirrors with memory
  • Front trunk (Frunk)

Safety

8.1/10

The 2018 Tesla Model S scored IIHS’s highest rating, ‘Good’, in four out of their 5 tests. It scored an ‘Acceptable’ in the small overlap test.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)
Moderate Overlap Front Good
Side Good
Roof Strength Good
Head Restraints & Seats Good
Front Crash Prevention Superior
Small Overlap Front (Driver’s Side) Acceptable
Headlights Poor
Child Seat Anchors (LATCH) Ease Of Use Moderate

The Model S only went through one test, the rollover test, from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, where it scored 5 out of 5 stars. The Audi A7 and the Porsche Panamera didn’t receive any ratings, as is common with luxury and sports cars.

Tesla doesn’t have individual safety features, instead, it has several different techs that work together to keep your Tesla safe. Some basic features include:

  • Rearview camera
  • Parking sensors
  • Blind spot monitoring
  • Lane departure warning

Safety Features

But Tesla’s optional safety features are the most desirable. The Enhanced Autopilot system adds most of the autonomous features that make Tesla a ‘Tesla’. Tesla uses four cameras and 12 ultrasonic sensors to monitor its surroundings. It can maintain a steady speed with traffic, keep itself centered in a lane, and automatically change lanes. It can also merge onto freeways and successfully exit a freeway off-ramp and transition to city street driving. And if that wasn’t enough, it can identify a parking spot and park itself, and even be summoned from its parking spot to wherever you are with your smartphone.

Tesla pushes the limits of autonomous driving with their Full Self-Driving Capability. It uses 8 cameras and is capable of performing all the duties of a driver. You can simply enter your destination and the car would navigate itself through the best route to the destination and even find a parking spot and park itself.

Even if you don’t go for such packages when you buy your Tesla, you always have the option of enabling them at a later date for an extra $1,000 per feature. But always remember, no matter how amazing the autonomous driving may be, it is always a good idea for the driver to be alert an take control whenever, if ever, necessary.

Competition

2018 Tesla Model S vs Porsche Panamera

The Porsche Panamera has been highly praised ever since its release. There is very little that can be criticized about it, especially considering that it is also available in a highly capable hybrid version. Although it can’t match Model S’s motor power or acceleration, the Panamera does well to hold on its own with a decent 20-22 mile range on electric power only.

But all this comes at a price, though. Its starting price is $85,000, and the hybrid version comes for about $100,000. The Panamera matches Model S’s athletic and comfortable handling, but the Model S has several other advantages besides acceleration and speed. The Panamera can only seat 4, while the Model S can seat up to 7 passengers. Model S also has a bigger cargo capacity, and not to mention a state-of-the-art infotainment system.

2018 Tesla Model S vs Audi A7

Since the Model S has broken the mold of slow electric cars, and the only electric cars that can really compete with it are other Teslas, it’s only fair to compare it with the class leaders who run on gas. The Audi A7 is a brilliant sedan that ranks highly in large luxury cars list. It has a price similar to the Model S, but that’s as far as the similarities go.

The A7 doesn’t have any hybrid or electric models, and though it provides excellent performance, it can’t match the Model S in speed and acceleration. The A7 does have a more upscale cabin and a more balanced and sporty handling. But the Model S emerges as a better car due to its performance, excellent mileage, and of course, the central infotainment unit

Final Verdict

If you’re looking for a luxury large car that pushes the boundaries of what an electric car can do, look no further. The Tesla cars are something out of a sci-fi movie with their incredible performance and futuristic technologies. And compared to similarly performance oriented hybrid cars of other manufacturers, the Tesla isn’t that highly priced, either.

Besides from minor flaws like the restricted headroom in the rear and the slightly lackluster cabin, there is not much to criticize in the Model S. It is fast, smooth, hi-tech, good for the environment, and an overall thriller to own and drive.

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