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back to article Tesla's Elon Musk v The New York Times, Round 2

There's no love lost between Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk and New York Times reporter John Broder this Valentine's Day, with the debate over the accuracy of Broder's recent review of the Tesla Model S having devolved into a bitter display of online "he said, she said." The public spat first erupted on Monday, when the paper …

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Joke

Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

"Useless on highways, useless in cities, useless in winter, unable to pass a re-charging station without stopping -- Elon Musk, you're in a hole and the more you dig the deeper it is getting."

dig upwards duuuuude

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Happy

Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

"You are paying supercar prices for a Tesla car...You would expect supercar performance for that. Obviously, you're not going to get that."

I want to be able to buy a supercar that cheaply! They're south of 100k, putting them (Roadster and S) in the 'fast but not a supercar' and 'decent expensive sedan' territories. I'd argue that the Roadster has pretty spectacular performance figures. You can get better, but it's still good.

"So you would then think that you are buying a premium luxury car for that money (like a Jaguar). So you would expect it to match that in terms of range and comfort. So far, that won't be the case either."

I would say that you're not really paying for either the performance or the luxury. Instead you're paying for a new facet of design and a new technology, coupled with reduced fuel costs. Back of fag packet maths dictates that over 100,000 miles a 50mpg car would use £12,000 of fuel at today's prices (so... probably twice that over the life of the car, given the stupid way it's ramping up! *rant*). Now that's not currently enough to eclipse the increased purchase cost, but it at least goes some way to explain why anyone would spend the extra money.

"Why bother paying that much money for a car when you could buy a super economical supermini or a dual fuel car (such as the Vauxhall Ampera)? It's complete nonsense."

And yet iPhones sell, despite phones a quarter of the price being able to do the same job. Some items are simply aspirational in nature. Sometimes we're just happy to pay a premium for a technology that we like, or a product that is unique. After all: Why buy a Ferrari when one can build a kit-car with similar performance for a quarter of the price?

Cars are an ENORMOUSLY personal choice. They are the second most expensive thing that many people will ever buy and are the means in which we are perhaps judged by most of the people we see (in passing), and so people want something that expresses them and how they want to be seen. Technically Skodas and VWs are pretty much the same now, so why are people paying £5k more for a VW badge on the front? Because image matters to them. There's nothing inherently wrong with that.

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

Pfft, I bet if Broder had Musk's money he could! And besides, Broder doesn't have a stupid sounding name, unlike Musk. "Elon Musk", sounds like a crappy game you'd get on the Atari in the 70's....

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

Your post is a joke because your reading comprehension is simply poor, right?

I simply LOVE this 'correspondence':

Musk: Broder says he set the cruise control to 54mph, when in fact he drove at between 65mph and 81mph for the whole trip.

Broder: That's not how I remember it. Maybe the calculations are wrong, because Tesla actually sent me a car with the wrong size wheels.

Wrong size wheels. LOL. Dozens of prior tests from dozens of different automotive journalists, using this *precise* car, but *you* got "wrong size wheel" which simply MUST have altered the facts.

Wow.

Let's add:

Musk: Broder took an unplanned, lengthy detour through downtown Manhattan to purposefully drain the car's battery further.

Broder: I took an approximately two-mile detour through Manhattan – not downtown – just as I told Tesla I would.

There is NO SUCH THING as a "two-mile detour through Manhattan" on a trip between Washington DC and Boston. There are only 1 major road going along the corridor of that route - the New Jersey Turnpike - up to the level of NYC. And along that corridor there are only 4 opportunities to cross the Hudson River to travel between New Jersey and New York: the Gothals Bridge to Staten Island which connects to the Verrazano Bridge and Long Island and beyond; the Holland Tunnel to lower Manhattan; the Lincoln Tunnel to midtown Manhattan and the George Washington Bridge to Washington Heights in upper Manhattan island.

Unless one sticks only to the neighborhood of Washington Heights - and that is a specific destination who's proper name is used - getting **anywhere** else in "Manhattan" from the DC to Boston route requires FAR MORE than just "two miles". For example, the first exit off the GWB in the southerly direction is the Henry Hudson Parkway / West Side Highway south, and the first exit is Riverside Park @ 151st Street - a distance of 1.6 miles. One way. And the exit ramp puts you into a PARK, it is another 0.6 miles to get to the first street intersection at 158th Street. To turn around EXACTLY at that point - pretty much nowhere, almost no one lives at that junction - is about 1 mile back. That's almost 3 miles...and you didn't truly go anywhere. Off the route, to nowhere, back again. Did he really pick someone up at 158th street?! Really?!

The next, "true" exit with larger populations and any services going south off the route is 125th Street - 2.3 miles. One way.

The Lincoln Tunnel / Holland Tunnel trips are no better and almost always suffer delays, which means his heating system would have been running even if the wheels hadn't been turning. Gothals? He said "Manhattan" and that connections ONLY leads to Staten Island, then Long Island beyond, so that is off the list.

IN OTHER WORDS: As Musk stays, Broder is simply LYING. The roads and traffic patterns of NYC speak the truth for themselves. It is pretty much IMPOSSIBLE to just go "two miles" as a NYC detour!

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Holmes

Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

...and there you have it.

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

Your comment is pathetic. You have already made up your mind to speak negatively of the Tesla S. Yes! You need to charge it full before use. You don't say, well, I'm only going to the store, then go on a joy ride with the vehicle half discharged, then complain it left you are out in the woods somewhere! Only an idiot would go half cocked in a half charged EV. Stick to what ever it is you know about, and go drive your gas hog. Good Day.!

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

You obviously didn't read Musk's article.

According to Musk, the car *didn't fail*

Logs (that are now public) show the car still had charge and there was no failure recording. The "reporter" first said that the car ran our of charge. Then he said that maybe it didn't but it shutdown anyway, despite the recordings.

The guy was instructed to do some things and chose to not do them. I would argue that he was right to test the car outside of parameters because it is interesting to customers to see what a failure margin it has, but he has no right to claim he did everything as told when he obviously didn't.

The car had the supercharge system and the statement was "if you use supercharging, then the range is extended by that much". The guy turned it off and then claimed it didn't reach the extended range. Well ... d'uh! If you turn of the system that helps extend the range, it is common sense it won't reach that range .... but yet the car reported it had charge *despite* that. To me that's a plus for Tesla.

The guy already lied about some things, even if the rest as just an error, he showed at least poor judgement.

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EJ
Facepalm

Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

"Read better" - hmm. By that you mean read only Musk's account and not the journalist's account.

And as we all know from reading accounts of people driving into lakes using GPS, Apple phones inflating the bars of cell signal strength, Nissan's TPMS systems reporting low tire pressures when actually the aluminum wheels corroded around the TPMS sensors and interfered with their operation, BMWs that their oil level sensors report oil overfills or low oil when their oil levels are fine.... telemetry is always fail-proof and 100% accurate.

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

Nice hatchet job, but no factual basis for your reply.

Musk's response is to illustrate that there was a pattern of irregularities - with the accusation that it was due to dishonestly - in the actual review.

His argument was that even if you drove a petrol car, and did it against common sense, such as leaving the filling station for a 61 mile trip when your car's computer says it has only 32 miles of range left, it almost certain you would be stuck on the side of the road too.

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Unhappy

Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

Sounds to me this car is perfectly suited for driving in California. Fine. Keep it there. That NYTimes article only reinforces my idea about this car. Which is probably the reason why Tesla will keep trying to fight and win this PR kerfuffle.

Sat in one over the weekend, was disappointed with the legroom and headroom, absence of cooled (!) seats for a car in this price range, and that horrible touchscreen in the center console, with virtual buttons that are way too small to properly touch without looking.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

"He can launch a rocket to ISS and Broder can't!"

I think I'm with Mr. Plouzhnikov on this one :-)

Seriously though, I have to say that having read this journalist's article by chance in the IHT, what immediately sprang up to my mind was "he's just trying to write a polemic article so he gets talked about".

There might be small shortcomings or really serious flaws with Tesla's products, or electric cars in general, I do not know, and from that man's article I would be none the wiser so what use is his writing to me? It wasn't even entertaining.

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

Your argument fails straight on 1. If someone deliberately fills their tank with less petrol than it requires to reach their destination and subsequently the car runs out of fuel, the only conclusion that can be drawn is they're an idiot or attempting to prove a retarded point.

It's no different if the car is electric or not. Your other points fail along similar lines - the cabin temperature can be anything you like but if you deliberately jack it up to drain power then your car will have less miles. Regardless of the engine underneath.

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

Actually, you are paying a high price for a Tesla due to the technology and research that has been put into this most significant advance in transportation. The Tesla can give you a round trip of over 250 miles, whereas a Leaf is only good for 70-100 miles (a commuting vehicle).

As more, open-minded people buy these types of vehicles, there will be more infrastructure to build them, and prices will come down.

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

As an owner of a Nissan Leaf, you do have to keep an eye on how much energy you have on board, just like in any kind of vehicle. You run out of gas, your car stops. You run your car at 80 mph on a near empty tank, you will need to be towed away. Electric heating takes about 10% of the range off and hard acceleration and highway speeds are less efficient than gentle starts and slower speeds. This is true for gasoline engines as well.

If I could have afforded a Tesla Model S, I would certainly have bought one. This is the newest form of transportation, and people need to know how to operate it properly, if they are to take advantage of the benefits that electric cars offer: 75% reduction in "fuel" costs, little to no maintenance, great acceleration, and much less carbon pollution (the Leaf gets 72 MPGe where I am operating it, due to the nature of our electricity).

People need to use their brains a little more.

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Re: Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk arguments are pathetic

1.) No, Musk just points out that the car was only charged to 90% at the first supercharger station (I don't think it is disputed that the car readout said "charge complete" at this point) and 72% at the second. By taking advantage of the superchargers, the debacle could have been easily averted, but this alone did not prevent the trip from succeeding.

2.) It was Broder who said that he kept the temperature set low implying he spent much of the trip driving in a cold cabin. Musk shows that the cabin temp was mostly set at typical levels (and for the specific point in time that Broder chronicles was not set to 64; that didn't happen until 70 miles later - apparently the amount of time it took Broder to work out the mental math). This is one way in which Broder's article misleads.

3.) Again, it was Broder who suggested he spent much of the trip driving at 54 mph. This is not remotely true. Musk is simply pointing out that Broder lied about how slowly he drove (or when and how much of the trip he spent going slowly). But this did not cause the trip to fail.

4.) I'm not sure what the contention is with Manhattan. Broder describes it as "After a short break in Manhattan" and Musk calls it "an unplanned detour through downtown Manhattan to give his brother a ride". Petty complaint maybe. Not the reason the trip failed.

5.) The point is that the car gives fairly good information about range and a motorist cooperating with the car would have obviously had a successful trip. If there is a failure on the Tesla's part, it is that it is probably giving range estimates in more typical conditions (I don't know what "EPA Rated Range" is), maybe failing to account for the temperature (both for battery temp efficiency and cabin heater load) or driver behavior. A cooperative driver would have undoubtedly fully charged at the supercharging station in Milford.

The big mistake was not plugging the car in overnight (or an illustration of the weakness of the EV, if you prefer); when parked overnight in very cold conditions, the battery loses charge. Broder didn't account for this when he stopped charging at 73% in Milford (after 47 minutes of charging while writing in his article that he charged for 58 minutes). But once he woke up to find that the car had lost charge overnight, and traveled to the charging station in Norwich, it is inexplicable that he would get back on the road with 32 miles of range for a 61 mile trip. Broder claims "and after an hour they cleared me to resume the trip to Milford". But in his response he states, "The Tesla personnel whom I consulted over the phone – Ms. Ra and Mr. Merendino – told me to leave it connected for an hour, and after that the lost range would be restored. I did not ignore their advice." Grammatically, the first claim sounds as if he had a conversation and received "clearance" after charging for an hour (implying they had knowledge that the range estimate was only 32 miles), while the response sounds like he had a conversation before charging for an hour. I do think this is indicative of how the review gets away from itself in conveying truth.

I might agree that Broder wasn't overtly trying to sabotage his trip, but he did do the minimum in operator effort. Why would you, after experiencing what you claimed was a bad experience in cautiously slow driving, cold cabin temps, and actual range underperforming EPA rated range, not charge the car for another 10 or 20 minutes to give yourself a cushion (especially knowing how uncharacteristically cold it was outside - or that you planned to leave it parked not charging in freezing temps overnight)?

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Broder was too slack with Tesla, and doubtless other car makers

If John Broder was a proper journalist he'd have gotten the Tesla anonymously from a dealer or a past customer, rather than accepting a specially tuned and prepped vehicle from Tesla.

Broder's downfall as a journalist was that he was too lax on Telsa. A reporter should never claim a specially prepared vehicle is typical of what consumers will receive.

This is a big problem with entertainment, travel and automobile journalists, they lack the journalistic independence and journalistic integrity of real journalists. They accept specially prepared products and report on them as if they were standard stock, they accept special treatment, trips, meals and other rewards which totally undermine journalistic integrity.

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Paris Hilton

Re: Broder was too slack with Tesla, and doubtless other car makers

RTFA carefully. It wasn't test of the car - it was the test of the Tesla's Supercharger station network.

Network is apparently OK. Car... well we knew the limitations of e-cars beforehand, but Musk comments have simply inflated the story's newsworthiness.

Now it's more about bashing the car manufacturers and/or the auto reviewers.

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The Balance Of Evidence

This second round of claim and counter-claim brings some useful additional data to the table. Fortunately, we can ignore most of it, as stated here, as a bit of "he said, she said". What we can't do, however, is ignore the facts.

Our NYT journalist, in their article, made very clear mention of the fact that they used cruise control in order to preserve battery life. If you look at the analysis data provided by Tesla, it is impossible to spot any period of the test drive during which cruise control was active - the vehicle speed is just a series of irregular spikes, even when on a sustained run. Point 1 to Tesla...

Where our NYT journo did get specific about aspects of the journey - for example he was very clear and precise in terms of reporting different vehicle speeds, taken from the dashboard of a car on which the speed is very, very easy to read. The data from the trace - and this is clearly visible - reports very different speeds. Point 2 to Tesla...

Our journalist is also very specific about the timing of charges during the journey. Once again, the Tesla trace data reports this very differently. It is important to note with this point that whilst in his latest response our journo replies with the answer that he was doing what the people from Tesla told him to do... or that he stopped charging when the range indicator said the vehicle had enough charge... Thinking about that, it almost makes sense on the surface. However, if you gave me a car capable of 40mpg for a test drive, and I put 2 gallons of fuel in the tank for a 50 mile drive, I think you'd agree that in reasonable conditions it would get me there. But if I drove around at 6000rpm in 1st gear, chances are it would not. So the response that "I stopped charging when the guage said I should get there..." is a little specious if the unfinished remainder of the sentence is, "... and then drove like a plonker to ensure I wouldn't." Point 3 to Tesla.

Final thought. Whilst I'd concede that Musk's rebuttal is a bit heavy on the righteous indignation, it is very clearly supported by graphically presented, factual data, captured from the actual vehicle performing the actual test drive. I notice with keen interest that whilst the journalist is very heavy on responses, at not one point does he respond with: "Your data is wrong." That speaks volumes.

[ Oh, FWIW, I'd consider myself a complete petrolhead and have zero interest EVs... but in this case it looks like a journalist being caught out trying to make up a salacious story and being caught in the act... ]

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence

If you're in traffic and your on cruise control, your not going to have a constant speed. Also, on the one car I drove with Cruise Control on it as soon as you press the brake pedal the cruise control disengages for safety. So in reality, while the journalist may not have driven it steadily, he still drove it in a way similar to that of a normal car, which is something that this Tesla is going up against.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The Balance Of Evidence

This is totally correct.

[FWIW I also consider myself a bit of a car nut, I have a MK Indy, for summer fun and track days, but my daily drive is an electric car. You see I enjoy the performance of the EV and I love the cost of the fuel! (though this does mean i end up putting my foot down a bit more than I should as it's guilt free.. oops) now I'm not stupid, I don't want any compromises with my car so I bought an Ampera with a petrol range extender. I drive every day on electric and when I need longer journeys I put petrol in it and drive.. it's a winning combination and the only way an electric car would work for me, and it does work. A Battery only EV would not have suited my needs. but the EV I drive does. EV's don't always fit the stereotype!]

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Pint

Re: The Balance Of Evidence

It's nice that we're finally reaching the time where one can be a petrolhead and not somehow emasculated in the eyes of other car fiends for thinking that electric has a place on the roads.

For me, it's Tesla that made that sea change. I can't afford one, I'll never get one, but with those performance figures and styling the Roadster has certainly earned a spot on my 'top 20 cars I'd buy if I had the money' list.

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence

and on the other hand the data presented by tesla is all bollocks - all bets are off

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Stop

Re: The Balance Of Evidence

Citation?

Why are you willing to believe one undocumented side and discard the documentation of the other?

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FAIL

Re: The Balance Of Evidence

What we can't do, however, is ignore the facts.

Hear hear!

If you look at the analysis data provided by Tesla...

The data from the trace [provided by Tesla...

Once again, the Tesla trace data...

So all of your "facts" depend on Tesla's data being correct.

You haven't so much ignored the facts as thrown them away in favor of one side's story.

The facts can be summarized thusly:

The reporter tried to drive an expensive vehicle.

The drive did not go well.

The reporter wrote a review panning the vehicle.

The vehicle's manufacturer subsequently blamed the reporter.

The manufacture has published some numbers which they claim to be the log of the reporter's journey.

Pretty much everything else depends on whom you're predisposed to believe.

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence @ Psyx

In the article, the journo says that the wheels were the wrong size. This might affect the data if the rolling diameter was altered, but which way depends on whether the diameter was increased or decreased, and how much by how great the difference is. However, the car would probably have had to have been on 10" Mini rims to have made the difference claimed!!

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence @ Psyx

"In the article, the journo says that the wheels were the wrong size. This might affect the data if the rolling diameter was altered, but which way depends on whether the diameter was increased or decreased, and how much by how great the difference is. However, the car would probably have had to have been on 10" Mini rims to have made the difference claimed!!"

Agreed. Unless of course the speedo in the 'black box' was GPS-based (I suspect it might well have been given the GPS-generated mapp released with the tracking data). Analogue speedos on petrol cars are notoriously unreliable, and if you do the maths, even the difference between new and near-bald tyres makes a couple of mph difference.

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence @ Psyx

"In the article, the journo says that the wheels were the wrong size."

No, in the chat log the "journalist" was only guessing the wheels were the wrong size causing the speedometer to read 54 MPH for claimed 65+ which was logged. Skipping the fact the data log was reading speed from the same source as the speedometer. Skipping the fact he had no disagreement with the distance mileage. Or that he didn't notice any discrepancy in his indicated speed vs prevailing speed. Quite the contrary, he said he was blocking traffic at 54 MPH and the logs say he was driving much faster.

I have no love lost for EVs but I believe Musk is correct in that the NYT spun this "test". But sadly haven't we come to expect that of the NYT?

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence

Ridiculous.

The PROBLEM is that most reply posters are from UK, and know NOTHING about the roads that Broder must take to accomplish the trip.

The I-95 corridor from Washington DC to the Delaware Water Gap, a distance of 66.1 miles, is at most points 6 lanes wide (3 each side). In many places, for example around Baltimore, MD, the I-95 corridor is a "superhighway" at EIGHT LANES WIDE.

Once you cross the Delaware Water Gap via the Delaware Memorial Bridge, you join the lower section of the New Jersey Turnpike / I-95 which is 4 lanes wide (2 lanes each side)...but only up to exit 7. Going northbound, from exit 7 to the George Washington Bridge exit - a distance of 68.6 miles - it expands to 6 then 8 lanes wide. It then splits into two "spurs" - east and west - EACH with 6 lanes! That's TWELVE TOTAL LANES of traffic!

Once below Elizabeth and the Holland Tunnel junctions, on "most" days a cruise control can EASILY be set for the going rate of speed. Which is usually 10 to 15 MPH over the speed limit :D

DON'T give me the line that you can't use cruise control on the NJ Turnpike. You don't know what you are talking about.

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Vic
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Re: The Balance Of Evidence @ Psyx

> However, the car would probably have had to have been on 10" Mini rims to have made the difference claimed!!

You do know the formula to calculate the circumference of a circle, right?

54mph to 60mph is an error of about 10%. A difference of 10% in the tyre diameter will make that happen. You don't need 10" wheels for that...

Vic.

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence

Computers don't lie! Reporters do. Wow! Did you even finish school?

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence

"Musk's rebuttal (...) is very clearly supported by graphically presented, factual data,"

You seem to be blinded by "not contestable evidences".

You don't know how these data were produced, if they were tampered, and more importantly, how to understand them.

A specific point which makes me sympathetic to the journalist (for a time, since is not usual of me) :

Musk says the battery was "never ran out of charge".

However, Broder says that "the car spontaneously shut itself down anyway and had to be towed", a fact which has been confirmed by the towing company.

That the battery system preserves a minimum level of charge in order to remain rechargeable is a technical detail. As a conceptor of the vehicle, Musk knows full well the difference between "there is not an electron left in the battery" and "the car shut itself down". For any normal being, the second sentence is equivalent to "my battery ran out of charge", while the first is equivalent to "my battery is flat dead".

That Musk tried to tamper evidence interpretations by deliberately mixing distorded technical details tells a lot about its mood and honesty.

This makes me look all other elements of his "not contestable evidence" with a bit of scepticism.

Besides, Tesla is known for aggressively suing any media company which does not say nice things about them. Ask BBC, ask "Top Gear". They even sue their own users when they have a bad experience and tend to be too vocal on public forums. Musk also attempted to "erase from history" one of Tesla co-founders and went to court on this. This is a terrible pattern, and tells a lot about the company's mind.

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Re: The Balance Of Evidence

> used cruise control in order to preserve battery life

I once drove an A-Class that would drop down a gear in cruise control where it would stay in top on the same bit of road when not in cruise control. CC tends to be more aggressive with the throttle to maintain speed.

> the vehicle speed is just a series of irregular spikes, even when on a sustained run. Point 1 to Tesla...

Not necessarily. On a motorway in traffic you will always be dropping in and out of cruise as you come up on something slower and have to wait to pull out and pass. Also, if you're using GPS to get the speed it will be all over place because of the inaccuracy of GPS. Should be within about 5mph though, maybe with bigger spikes if the GPS loses and regains lock.

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And the CNN posse did the same trip without a single problem. fromage frais Rodney...

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Read it in full. And probably read it again to let it sink.

Quote from the article:

"Tesla has a load of instructions to maximize battery power, and I think I followed them pretty well."

That is not the counter. It is more or less confirmation of the Broder's experience: unless you drive perfectly, couple of wrong turns or missed exists mean you might have to call the towing service.

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Foolish response.

I'm not especially a fan of electric cars - the poor range characteristics and cost being my issue (just doesn't suit my usage). However, I think Musk has rather fallen into a common mistake when handling reviews - he keeps giving them the oxygen of publicity with his rants (right or wrong). He's being a tad over-sensitive, which betrays one of a number of flaws. He's either lacking in faith in his investment and over-compensating, or overly protective of 'his baby' and doing likewise. Either way, he needs better anger management. This is the press he's dealing with and they tend to be a little prone to dramatisation for a good story (look at media coverage on global warming for that - probably done the cause more harm than good).

History is littered with similar examples of overreaction - the Peter Wright book Spycatcher wouldn't have sold in as big numbers had the UK government simply ignored it. Likewise, the Satanic Verses. People are more cynical these days. They aren't as lead by individual reviews as they once were. Musk should take a lesson from other car manufacturers - odd bad reviews happen, just don't feed the troll.

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Re: Foolish response.

and don't pick arguments with people who buy ink by the barrel

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Foolish response.

No.

A lesson learned from things like the CNW Dust To Dust Hummer v Prius bollocks and the "Swiftboat" incident in the 2004 US Presidential Election is that you have to respond quickly and strongly because otherwise the public has moved on and bullshit headlines stick.

In this case Tesla would be quite happy for people to know and follow the details since knowing the details would reduce the damage. With the books they really didn't want people to know the details so they should have left it well alone.

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Re: Foolish response.

"A lesson learned from things like the CNW Dust To Dust Hummer v Prius bollocks and the "Swiftboat" incident in the 2004 US Presidential Election is that you have to respond quickly and strongly because otherwise the public has moved on and bullshit headlines stick."

Agreed.

People who already made their minds made up will be intractable on the issue of course, but those people aren't the ones being appealed to anyway, because there is clearly no point in doing so. If one thinks electric cars are crap, you'll never buy one and so your opinion matters feck all to Tesla. It's the 'swing voters' like myself who are undecided on the matter who it's worth trying to reason with and aim a counter-argument at.

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Re: Foolish response.

Nope - this make Musk come across as a defensive twat who you wouldn't trust to run a fairground ride. I don't see from this how he is different from Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, or that objectionable individual at Oracle whose name I've forgotten. I don't have anything to do with any company being run by psychopaths that stand out from the rest of the psychopaths running big companies.

It's a shame, because I really like what Musk is doing with SpaceX.

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Pint

Re: Foolish response.

"Nope - this make Musk come across as a defensive twat who you wouldn't trust to run a fairground ride."

I personally feel otherwise. In his shoes - and equipped with telemetry - I'd have been pretty narked off and published it as well. Journalists tend to lie, and they get away with it far to often.

Imagine something amazingly valuable to you (wife, kid, home, pet project or whatever) being slandered in the press and you can prove the journo was lying. Would you not be indignant?

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Re: Foolish response.

Odd bad news does not happen. It is manufactured. Elon is merely providing data from the cars computer that correlates, substantiates, and verifies that what he says is correct(truth), and what the low rent reporter says is incorrect(lie). Besides, computers don't lie. People do.

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Re: Foolish response.

And the only way for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. Well, Elon Musk is a good man, and he did something to right a wrong. Broder should be writing about school plays, or girls soccer, not a review of a most admirable care, the Tesla S. He is woefully over his head.

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Stop

I wonder why this test drive totally contradicts all previous drives and reports from other independent agencies.

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Anonymous Coward

please link to any chosen independant agency not including "baneveryfossilfuelcar weekly" elon musk is god monthly or the like

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Scroll up about a dozen posts, and there's one there.

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How about CNN?

http://money.cnn.com/2013/02/15/autos/tesla-model-s/

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Really Musk?

Rather than let a bad review disappear in a week, you want to get everyone reading it with a childish spat?

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Go

... and when is El Reg going to review this car?

C'mon guys, I know you can!

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Keeping it in the public eye

"There's no such thing as bad publicity"

This "argument" (a full five days, not the original 5mins) has significantly raised the profile of the car. Having a shouty CEO is part of that process.

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