Today was an important day for Tesla Motors as its all-new Model S was named the 2013 Motor Trend Car of the Year.
For any automarker and any model, anything that gets named COTY honors from any publication is an honor. But there's just a couple of things that really need to be asked in this case. Particularly when you look at the past.
It was only in 2011 that Motor Trend garve the honors to the then all-new Chevrolet Volt. It was heralded for being an electric dream; however, its sales never picked up and buyers did not flock to the Volt.
That said, when I hear about the 2013 announcement, I can't help but wonder if this is a repeat of the same mistake, OR if the all-new Model S is that good.
Tesla's press release follows:
Model S Bests a Field of 25 Powerhouse Automotive Brands
Tesla Motors, Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA)
Today Model S was named Motor Trend’s 2013 Car of the Year, one of the automotive industry’s most coveted awards. To take top honors, Model S garnered a unanimous vote from the panel of Motor Trend judges and guest judges, considered among the savviest and toughest critics in the industry. This is the first time in Motor Trend’s memory that every judge was in unanimous agreement.
“Our aspiration with the Model S was to show that an electric car truly can be better than any gasoline car, which is a critical step towards the widespread adoption of sustainable transport,” said Elon Musk, Tesla Motors co-founder and CEO. “Nothing illustrates this more clearly than winning Motor Trend’s Car of the Year by unanimous decision against a field of exceptional competitors.”
The 2013 field of competition included entries from some of the most historically dominant nameplates. The field was initially narrowed to 11 finalists including the Porsche Boxster, BMW 3-series, Lexus GS, and Subaru BRZ. After extensive track and road testing pushed vehicles to their limits in one of the industry’s toughest tests of performance, efficiency, safety and more, the Tesla Model S was awarded top honors.
Model S is the world’s first premium sedan built from the ground up as an electric vehicle and has been engineered to elevate the public’s expectations of what a premium sedan can be. At the heart of Model S is the proven Tesla powertrain, delivering both unprecedented range and a thrilling drive experience. With a rigid body structure, nearly 50/50 weight distribution and a remarkably low center of gravity, Model S offers the responsiveness and agility expected from the world’s best sports cars while providing the ride quality of a luxury performance sedan.
Setting the bar for electric driving range, Model S offers 40 kWh, 60 kWh and 85 kWh battery options. All deliver unprecedented range, with the 85 kWh variant achieving an EPA-certified range of 265 miles. All three batteries use automotive-grade lithium-ion cells arranged for optimal energy density, thermal management, and safety.
Without an internal combustion engine or transmission tunnel, the interior of Model S has more cargo space than any other sedan in its class and includes a second trunk under the hood. The Model S interior features a 17” in-dash touchscreen with Internet capabilities, allowing for streaming radio, web browsing and navigation.
Tesla’s goal is to accelerate the world’s transition to electric mobility with a full range of increasingly affordable electric cars. California-based Tesla designs and manufactures EVs, as well as EV powertrain components for partners such as Toyota and Daimler. Tesla has delivered more than 2,400 Roadsters to customers worldwide. Model S, the world’s first premium sedan to be engineered from the ground up as an electric vehicle, began deliveries to U.S. customers in June of this year. Tesla has already received more than 13,000 reservations worldwide for Model S.