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Tesla Model S Top Speed: More Than 130 MPH, Emission-Free

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Top speeds are more relevant than many people think.

That even applies to cars like the Tesla Model S, though perhaps more for bragging rights than any practical purpose. And as bragging rights go, 133 mph isn't too bad for an electric car.

While there aren't many places you can legally explore a modern car's top speed, those three-figure numbers are usually a good indication of how well your car will cruise at freeway speeds.

A car designed to travel two or three times the speed limit will generally be relaxed, quiet and economical at the limit itself.

The Tesla Model S Performance is relaxed and quiet at pretty much any speed.

In fact, as you'll see (and hear) in the video above (via our sister site Motor Authority), wind and road noise are only really audible on camera at 90-100 mph, more than most people will regularly cruise at.

Acceleration only starts to tail off as the car breaks into the 120s, and it's all done at 133 mph. We make no guesses as to what the range might be at that sort of speed, even with the 85 kW battery pack--not that the Model S's gasoline-powered rivals will be particularly economical at 133 mph and above...

What'll be most remarkable to anyone unfamiliar with the Model S is just how quickly it reaches its top speed. Motor Authority measures it at 12 seconds to 100 mph (it could be less, as the driver appears to pull away fairly gently at first) and 26 seconds to 133 mph.

We don't condone exploring your car's top speed on the roads, of course, but it's nice knowing the Model S has plenty in reserve when you're at a steady highway cruise.

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Comments (9)
  1. That is awesome! It hit top speed like it was nothing, I love the audio too there was nothing but a little bit of wind noise. I think the lack of drama in driving an electric car could help us be better drivers. Since your not hearing a blazing engine and feeling each gear ratchet you up higher and higher, you'll stay calm and focused. I've pressed the accelerator to the floor in a few high performance cars and it really got my heart racing, I enjoyed it but I also had to calm myself so I could keep going. When I test drove a Model S performance I did the same thing and it was exciting but I stayed calm, I felt I could maintain a high speed for sometime because it was so easy to stay in control.
     
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  2. I wonder how many You tube video's will be made with Tesla Model S owners taking their cars to top speed now?. Remember unless you are on a race track or an official drag racing strip this is technically illegal on publicly used roads and could get you one heck of a speeding ticket or fines or even jail time. Anything beyond 80mph is considered unreasonable in Minnesota as written into the law books and is an invitation to a day in court for you. I like that the Tesla Model S performance can do a zero to 70mph in just over 5 seconds. No need to worry about not having enough power to pass someone with a Model S.
     
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  3. Tops speeds beyond 133MPh are pretty much nonsensical except...it's about image and it's what sells cars. 133MPH is actually a bit substandard for the class Model S is in and it's not because of lack of power, it's because Tesla failed at its attempts to do a proper 2 speed transmission. I do expect now that Tesla has come into some serious cash that it will have another go at it though.
     
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  4. Well, they could go with a planetary gearset and vary the ring gear's rotation to increase the gear ratio of the sun gear (the way Volt 'kicks down' at highway speeds to reduce the RPMs of the primary gear, for efficiency's sake). But I'd rather they go with an Axiflux motor at each wheel, say put 2x200kW/3000 lbft of torque at the rear and 2x100kW/2000 lbft of torque at the front. I bet you could top 133MPH with that, probably in less than 10 seconds if your tires are sticky enough..
     
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  5. Tops speeds beyond 133MPh are pretty much nonsensical except...it's about image and it's what sells cars. 133MPH is actually a bit substandard for the class Model S is in and it's not because of lack of power, it's because Tesla failed at its attempts to do a proper 2 speed transmission. I do expect now that Tesla has come into some serious cash that it will have another go at it though.
    It's would be highly unlikely that Tesla would try to make the Model S go faster since the average speed even on Germany's Autobahn is about 87 mph. Yes there are faster cars on the autobahn but its rare to see more than 120mph consistently so the Tesla Model S could navigate the autobahn however it's driving range at that speed would likely be poor.
     
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  6. I could see Tesla doing a 2 speed transmission for maybe a new edition of the Roadster. In fact Tesla originally tried a 2 speed transmission in the Roadster but it had low reliability and could break down. Tesla found that a single speed transaxle due to the essentially flat torque curve of the electric motor would work well and be highly reliable. I also believe Tesla limits the top speed electronically to 134mph so it would be interesting to see how much more speed that they could get out of the Model S. Remember speed is expensive How fast do you want to spend sums it up really well.
     
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  7. Tesla S is the ONLY BEV that can cruise at 80+mph for over an hour today.

    None of the other BEVs can do that. I am willing to bet that none of the Leaf owner would even "dare" to try that without a tow truck ready...
     
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  8. According to Tesla's published speed/range curves, an 85 kWh model can cruise at 80 mph for 200 miles. It's quiet and smooth too - way too tempting.
     
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  9. That is why I would rather have Tesla S holding the EV flag instead of Leaf.

    I have said it this repeately. Tesla S has shattered all EV myth and Leaf just reinenforced them all...
     
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