Tesla Motors have unveiled their latest prototype electric vehicle to much excitement…especially from moms! The new seven seater Model X has been designed with the family in mind but will still grab your attention with “falcon wing” doors that will get you from 0 to 100km/h in 4.4 seconds. Set for release in 2014, the Model X will add a third all-electric model to Tesla’s range.
The Model X is described on Tesla’s website as being an automobile “built around the driver — and six of her friends.” To make sure the design team was on the right track, Tesla last year invited a dozen Palo Alto, Calif.-area women to its headquarters for a free-wheeling, three-hour-long focus group led by Franz von Holzhausen, Tesla’s chief designer. Also, several of the designers who worked on the Model X are women, including Nancy Holman, Susanne Neuhauser and Kimberly Marte.
Since Tesla unveiled the Model X last month, more than 500 people have placed reservations for the car, including men who say they are buying the Model X for their wives as well as women who reserved the car for themselves. Neither the car’s price nor its expected range between charges has been announced, but Tesla says it will be comparable in range and price to its upcoming all-electric Model S luxury sedan, which will have a base price of $57,400.
There’s been a lot of buzz about the Model X’s “Falcon Wing” passenger doors, which have hinges on the top and open upward, rather than sliding sideways like the doors of typical minivans. The large trunk is deep enough to fit bags of groceries, camping equipment or a stroller, and there’s additional storage in a front trunk that Tesla calls the “frunk.” The seats are leather: ideal for cleaning up crumbs and spills. The second-row seats slide all the way forward — even with a baby’s car seat installed — which makes it easy to access the third row of seats.
“My sister has kids, including two in baby seats, and she drives a minivan,” said von Holzhausen, who oversees about 100 employees at Tesla’s design studio near Los Angeles. “I had to climb over the car seats to get into the back seat, and it seemed ridiculous to have to do gymnastics to get in and out of the car.”
Source: Chicago Tribune