Ford, Chrysler, and General Motors have been building cars in this country for over 100 years. During that time they have produced vehicles deserving of tremendous praise as well as vehicles that are better off forgotten.
Consumer Reports, the American magazine that reviews everything from cars to stereo equipment, has been doing its thing since 1936.
In all that time, never has an American automaker produced a vehicle CR found to be perfect.
Tesla, the American maker of electric cars, sold its first Model S in 2012. That’s just three short years ago and about 100 years after the Big Three automakers got their starts.
You’ve probably heard the news by now, but the newest Model S just scored a 103 on the CR scale that, until now, only went to 100. The 80-year-old magazine has called the vehicle the best car it has ever tested.
This is quite the embarrassment to every other automaker on the planet and will undoubtedly be a major source of pride for Tesla.
It’s virtually impossible in the modern era to buy a bad new car. It’s exceptionally easy, though, to buy a mediocre one. Traditional automakers have gotten used to the idea of building cars that are “good enough,” and it’ll take a hyper little upstart like Tesla to inspire perfection across the board.
It’ll take some time, though, because Tesla has forced CR to “move the goal posts.” Future cars will have to be even better than they are now just to maintain their present ratings.
In its tests, CR found the Model S P85D to sprint from 0-60 miles per hour in just 3.5 seconds while delivering the equivalent of 85 miles per gallon and a 200-mile range.
Consumer Reports‘ auto editor Mark Rechtin said,
The Tesla represents a revolution in automotive design and development that signals to the world that an electric car can not only match the performance of gasoline power cars but beat it.
The downside, of course, is that the Model S P85D is a $128,000 car. Perfection is expected at that price. We’ll wait and see if Tesla’s future cars, priced in the $30,000-$50,000 range, can uphold the same levels of supremacy.
Are you more likely to look into buying a Tesla after its perfect Consumer Reports test?