The Silicon Valley electric-car maker Tesla Motors seems to be in the news almost every day.

Over the last two weeks, the company faced fallout over glitches in early Model S cars, and upgraded its powertrain warranty.

It also turned the screws on states competing for its multibillion-dollar battery gigafactory. The company even worked on hiring hackers, to keep its future cars secure.

This is Green Car Reports' video news for the weeks of August 11 and 18, 2014--and this time, we're all about Tesla.

The quality and reliability of the Tesla Model S were front and center, with Consumer Reports listing numerous glitches it had experienced in its early 2012 Model S.

The consumer publication still likes the car, and its final quality rating will be determined by owner reports--not the test-car experience.

2013 Tesla Model S electric sport sedan on delivery day, with owner David Noland

2013 Tesla Model S electric sport sedan on delivery day, with owner David Noland

Moreover, the report noted that every one of the glitches was promptly fixed by attentive Tesla service technicians.

The company says that two years and 50,000 or so cars later, it has resolved the issues found in early cars, and recent models don't experience those problems.

Meanwhile, our Tesla-owning author David Noland  asked how serious the Model S drivetrain-replacement problem is for the company.

A Model S on long-term test with Edmunds is now on its fourth electric motor. The magazine Motor Trend had to have one replaced in its test car as well.

In some cases the problem was as simple as a small shim being required.

Still, last Friday, Tesla announced that it would extend the warranty on its powertrains to match that on the battery pack: 8 years and, for 85-kilowatt-hour cars, unlimited miles.

Slide showing candidate states for Tesla Motors gigafactory, from Feb 2014 presentation

Slide showing candidate states for Tesla Motors gigafactory, from Feb 2014 presentation

Separately, Tesla attended the Def Con computer-security conference in Las Vegas, hoping to hire professional hackers to ensure security in its future cars--offering as many as a few dozen jobs, according to reports. 

And CEO Elon Musk suggested that the company could offer replacement battery packs for its Roadster model, potentially giving the two-seat cars a range of up to 400 miles.

We already know that a site outside Reno, Nevada, is one of the ones being prepared for possible gigafactory construction--but other states are far from giving up.

Last week, it was suggested that California may suspend or delay parts of its environmental review process to let Tesla keep to its very aggressive schedule for getting the battery factory into production by the end of 2017.

Suspending the environmental protections would let Tesla launch its mass-market, zero-emission vehicle on schedule. Ironic, no?

Icon Helios - Tesla-powered streamliner

Icon Helios - Tesla-powered streamliner

A design house in Los Angeles called Icon unveiled its concept for a gorgeous Thirties-inspired retro streamlined coupe, to be built on the all-wheel-drive platform of the upcoming Tesla Model X.

The Icon Helios is only a sketch right now, but we think it's beautiful--and we hope designer Jonathan Ward is able to build one for real.

Finally, at last weekend's prestigious Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance, well-known tuning house Saleen unveiled its hot-rod version of the Model S electric car--called the Saleen FourSixteen.

It seems to be mostly body, suspension, and wheel modifications, but we'll be curious to find out whether Saleen can improve much on the P85 Performance Edition of the Model S.

And that's our Tesla news for the last 10 days. Don't worry: There's likely to be  more soon enough.


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