Third Tesla Model S Fire In Past 5 Weeks Breaks Out After Accident (Updated – Collision With Tow Hitch)

12 months ago by Jay Cole 260

3rd Tesla Fire In Just Over A Month Happened Wednesday, November 6th Near Nashville, TN

3rd Tesla Fire In Just Over A Month Happened Wednesday, November 6th Near Nashville, TN

Having recently gone through two “fire incidents” after an accident in the past 5 weeks, a third fire Model S has caught fire under potentially a similar condition.

And while the first two fires happened after the Tesla plug-in sedan had taken some serious damage, this Model S looks to have suffered less damage before the occurrence – although we would stress patience in jumping to any conclusions before an official investigation report has been released as this is BREAKING NEWS - that we will update as new information becomes available.

UPDATE (Nov 7th 10:39 EST):  The Tesla Model S in question reportedly struck a tow hitch on the road, and “hit the undercarriage of the vehicle causing an electrical fire.”

A Tennessee Highway Patrol spokeswoman (Dalya Qualls) stated that “The driver, identified as Juris Shibayama, struck a tow hitch that was in the middle of a lane, which damaged the car’s undercarriage and caused the fire.”

Updated Picture Fire Damage (Tennessee Highway Patrol via Bloomberg)

Updated Picture of Fire Damage (Tennessee Highway Patrol via Bloomberg)

As a point of reference, the first fire happened approximately five weeks ago after a Model S collided with a large metallic object in the middle of the road which then “impaled the battery pack with 25 tons of force.” The Tesla then caught fire after the owner safely exited his car.

The second fire occurred after an inebriated driver “lost control and crashed into the lining of the gazebo…” causing the vehicle to bounce, jump a curb and “demolished a part of the electrified fence” before “crashing into a tree. ”  In that case, the Model S immediately caught fire.

In both of these initial incidents, the end result being a fire was not an unexpected result given the situations.

While this situation doesn’t seem as dire as jumping onto an electrical fence, the driver – Juris Shibayama, 38, of Murfreesboro, Tennessee (according to Highway Patrol) did indicate that there was an accident/incident of some sort that could have cost  life.

Another Look At The Fire Via Social Media (Instagram User Davanh via Tom M @ BMW Active E Facebook Group)

Another Look At The Fire Via Social Media (Instagram User Davanh via Tom M @ BMW Active E Facebook Group)

The first reports was from a Twitter user (E @ nasvillain ) posted a picture of the incident (above) and stated that it happened around 1:30 pm (2:30 eastern) south of Nashville in Smyrna on Wednesday - the user also said that an accident with another car had not occurred before the blaze.

The second report from “davanh” who also posted photos of the fire on Instagram (above right and below) also indicated that there was “no accident” when she passed by the fire – which not to say there was not, but apparently only one car was on the scene at the time.

Doug @ TeslaMotorsClub reports Tesla has made a statement (8:49pm):

“We have been in contact with the driver, who was not injured and believes the car saved his life. Our team is on its way to Tennessee to learn more about what happened. We will provide more information when we’re able to do so.”

Reuters added this note from the Tennessee Highway Patrol:

“It’s possible that it ran over a piece of metal (which we know know to be a tow hitch) in the roadway,” police dispatcher Kathy Bryant said. “There was extensive damage.”  Police do not know how fast the 2013 model year car was traveling, but the driver was able to pull over to the shoulder and get out of the car.

Understandably as word of this incident filters out to the general public, Tesla stock price is taking a hit following a recent quarterly report (story on that here) that also didn’t do it any favors.

As of press the stock is currently off about $12 (8%) at just over $139 (real time quote can be found here) – the share price had been as high as $181.43 on Tuesday.

We expect to hear from Tesla Motors again shortly for a further update on the situation.

Additional Photos via Instagram (Davanh)

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

260 responses to "Third Tesla Model S Fire In Past 5 Weeks Breaks Out After Accident (Updated – Collision With Tow Hitch)"

    1. Spec9 says:

      Sure . . . but there are millions of Prius out there but only 10K or so Teslas.

      1. Dave R says:

        Well, and this Prius was converted to LPG – who knows how good the tank was – obviously it was pretty shoddy to just have blown up.

        1. qwerty says:

          Ironically, a couple of months ago InsideEVs advocated in an opinion piece to use removable propane tanks (like those used for BBQ grills) in a plugin car’s trunk to run a range extender ICE. I pointed out, that putting a propane tank in an enclosed space was a very bad and very dangerous idea. On a hot summer day the heat would cause the liquid petroleum gas (LPG = propane) to boil and possibly vent the propane through the tank’s pressure relief valve. Also, propane tanks need to be permanently mounted to the frame and pass crash tests to receive DOT approval.

          http://insideevs.com/op-ed-how-to-solve-the-1-problem/

      2. Joe says:

        Not for long.

    2. Burning Teslas bear a striking resemblance to the obama economic and social policies.

      1. io says:

        Like, anyone who actually know anything about them think they’re awesome and beat all alternatives, while uninformed people focus on the once-in-a-blue-moon mishap to spit on them?

        Seems accurate, thank you. You can go back trolling Youtube or CNN comments now.

        1. juan767 says:

          only in France do electric cars produce less carbon than gas or diesel powered cars. in countries that produce power from coal electric cars produce more carbon than gas or diesel powered cars. the reason is that France produces the majority of power from nuclear, not coal.

          1. Mint says:

            Coal is now less than 40% of US power consumption.

            More importantly, EVs primarily charge at night, when we have natural gas plants idling from low night demand. Those are the plants which will increase output to provide 90% of EV electricity, not coal (which provides baseload).

          2. This is untrue, even coal power-plants charge your Tesla more efficiently than gasoline engines. Coal only makes up around 40% of our grid power generation, and that figure is declining.

            Tesla Model S is cheap to own and WAY faster and better than any comparable made vehicle on the road.

            I don’t get why people get off on dogging electric vehicles, they are the future whether you like it or not. The Tesla Model S shows that you can have a larger and luxurious vehicle and drive it clean, why the hate?

            1. Mike says:

              When you run out of electricity, you can’t pour more in, like liquified fuel. Fossil fuels have more BTUs of energy per pound than batteries. (Heck, battery weight remains fixed! At least with liquid fuel, as it’s consumed, its weight decreases!)

              1. Not Mike says:

                And liquid fuel costs a lot (of fuel) to transport around while electricity can zip down wires more efficiently. Look at the MPGe of the very heavy Tesla and then compare to any similar gas-powered car. If you do the research you will find that the ModelS is not greener at first (because of the energy required to create the batteries) but then beats a gas car environmentally after about 2 years of use, and beats a Hybrid in about 5 years of use. So, this particular burned Model S = not greener, and all the others are.

            2. rotorhead1871 says:

              dont see the hate at all, I see people questioning the demigod status placed on this battery car, battery cars are plaged by the battery, the rest is just fine…but with a battery you are only as good as your next charge…and they are not cheap!…unless you think a S550 is cheap….and I would much prefer the 550…bottom line now….battery cars have a long way to go…

              1. levotb says:

                I MUCH prefer the 2013 Infiniti G37 Journey 4-door! Whatta great machine! And without all those computer problems Mercedes and BMW have! Ever seen how many Beemers are on the rack at BMW service centers? They are “lift queens”, like Porsches and other German cars.

                1. Wrong questions says:

                  Audi 16 years old. One clutch. 2 alternators one starter 400 k on the odometer. You sir have an overpriced Nissan.

            3. Political Hostage says:

              Coal power, which is very clean by modern standards, is only going down in production because of the current “presidential” administration.

              The bigger question should be why is the federal government micro-managing a (once) free-market economy. Everything they touch, such as the best healthcare system in the world, becomes garbage. If the idiotic no-nukes crowd of the 1970′s were ignored, America would be the leader in nuclear power now. The fed needs to have a daily reading of the US Constitution so they remember their limits.

              DO NOT ELECT ANY POLITICIAN THAT IS NOT IN FAVOR OF RESTORING THIS COUNTRY TO ITS GLORY.

              1. levotb says:

                You mean, oust the RINO? Agreed! They’re simply agents for the Chamber of Horrors and could give a rat’s behind about this country.

          3. io says:

            Anywhere in the US, even on the dirtiest part of the grid, driving an EV is already cleaner than a typical gas car. The difference increases every year.
            http://www.ucsusa.org/clean_vehicles/smart-transportation-solutions/advanced-vehicle-technologies/electric-cars/emissions-and-charging-costs-electric-cars.html

            1. woodNfish says:

              BS! Electric cars are the most polluting vehicles on the road because of their lithium batteries and the fact that they have to be replaced and disposed of.

              1. Petrodollar says:

                Electric vehicles leave a march larger ‘carbon footprint’ (hippy talk for energy expelled) than any gasoline vehicles because of a few different reasons. 1) The batteries are shipped from overseas to the plants where they are assembled making a huge difference for energy consumed. 2) The batteries become TOXIC WASTE after ten years and have to be professionally disposed of. 3) All the hot air expelled by hippies claiming otherwise increases the greenhouse gases that don’t exist in the first place successfully creating a time warp where robots from the future come back to collect silver pony tails for sport.

                1. Not Mike says:

                  1) boat transport isn’t all that inefficient. I’m sure you’ve seen the giant oil tankers.. you know, for your gas (never mind those pesky spills)

                  2) Li-Ion batteries like in the Tesla can be recycled, very efficiently in fact. You’re probably thinking of NiCad or some other toxic battery. But nice try.

                  3) No greenhouse gasses? You must also believe that dinosaur bones are fake, and your God put them there to test your faith.

              2. io says:

                Ah, yet another many-times-debunked myth.

                Let’s repeat: over its life cycle, including everything from raw materials extraction, manufacturing (battery included), use and eventual elimination/recycling, an EV (or, but to a smaller extent, a plug-in hybrid) pollutes dramatically less than any gas vehicle.

                Recent studies on the topic:
                http://www.renault.com/en/groupe/developpement-durable/environnement/pages/management-du-cycle-de-vie.aspx
                “[T]he EV provides a progress in all environmental impact categories.”

                http://www.environment.ucla.edu/media_IOE/files/BatteryElectricVehicleLCA2012-rh-ptd.pdf
                “All our results point to one main finding: an EV is less polluting than a conventional vehicle.
                [Furthermore] the majority of CV lifecycle air pollutans are emitted on the road [and so are] very difficult to confine. [Pollution from EVs] are a point source [which is] easier to mitigate.
                Clearly the EV is preferred”

                1. Jonathan Baker says:

                  Don’t confuse the True Believers with silly facts. It makes them mad at the world.

              3. levotb says:

                You’re absolutely right, woodNfish! The Tesla batteries have to be replaced in 10 years of normal driving, but few have had the cars for 10 years. I’ve heard that capacitors will be replacing the Tesla batteries in 2 years in their smaller versions, but it’s hearsay at this point.

                1. Jonathan Baker says:

                  Really? Replaced after 10 years? How did you come by that bit of “information”? Perhaps you are confusing a 10 year battery warranty with battery life. They aren’t the same thing. With that logic, ICE vehicles have to be replaced after 36,000 miles. Think about it….

            2. rotorhead1871 says:

              not true…

            3. levotb says:

              Maybe so, io, but the S costs about $80,000 after rebate and with the normal amount of extras thrown in (GPS, etc.). Now, my Infiniti G37 cost about $45,000 with GPS and other extras. Why should I go into debt to drive a wider car (the S is “a boat” with a teenie weenie rear window) when I can have a wonderful, fast, luxurious sports sedan for $35,000 less? Ever think how many years it would take to use $35,000 in gas? And are you purposely ignoring the high cost of repairs, wheels/tires for the Tesla? You can’t just take your Tesla to any mehanic–you have to take it to a dealer for service. BTW, the Tesla Menlo Park, CA showroom closed down recently…

              1. sven says:

                Tesla doesn’t have dealers. They have company stores.

              2. Benjamin says:

                It would take about 10.68 years at today’s gas prices and a average of 15, 000 miles a year. If gas goes up well getthe piont, plus no oil changes.

              3. Jeff D says:

                In America you have that choice. No one is telling you not to drive your Infiniti. Everyone has their preferences. One gap in your argument though is that you are comparing the two. Even though they are both luxury cars, they are not really in the same class. Therefore cost to purchase is not comparable. You buy your car and I’ll buy mine.

          4. anonymous says:

            You’ve forgotten Norway, 99% hydro.

            1. James says:

              Or Washington State, 85℅ clean hydro, 5% clean
              wind power…

              And folks like my friend who energizes his Tesla
              from solar on his home….

              What pains me most about fossil fuel windbags like
              our friends who’ve come out of the woodwork
              here is that they all breathe, and so do their
              families….so why is it when I tell them to smell
              the filthy air in their city, they act oblivious?
              Why do they never answer when I ask them if
              they’ve ever read the health effects on communities
              from diesel particulates in the air? Or how come
              they just laugh when I ask them if they would sit
              in their garage for 1/2 hour with that Infiniti running?

        2. TD Vann says:

          Keep drinking the Kool-Aid. I’m sure the demand for a $110,00 (average price of Tesla’s sold to date) electric toy will surge beyond filthy rich liberal envirokooks real soon. (by the way based on their last quarterly report it looks like all the U.S. envirokooks who wanted a Tesla have now place their orders). Stock should be back to $25 a share by January

          1. io says:

            Not just Tesla produces electrics, you know. If you think EVs must be expensive, you’re the one being mistaken I’m afraid.
            Go ahead, compare: http://www.edmunds.com/nissan/leaf/2013/tco.html

            Additionally, having not only the vehicle, but all the “fuel” it will ever need, produced domestically, thereby supporting local jobs, is a plus in my book.

            1. Nico says:

              Considering the the U.S. recently surpassed all the OPEC members to become the world’s number one exporter of oil, your “domestically produced energy” argument is moot.

              1. Benjamin says:

                I still have not found any proof of that. some links please.

        3. jack london says:

          The problem taxpayers who are not socialists have with Tesla is not the cars or the technology. The problem is that taxpayers have to support them. The conduit is: hardworking taxpayers pay taxes -> airhead green socialist Democrats give tax money -> Tesla/GM UAW/Solyndra etc -> campaign contributions to Democrats to get elected. It is the same formula that is used with the public employee unions and welfare recipients. Democrats buy votes with taxes.

          1. Lord Snodgrass says:

            Jack,

            You hit the nail on the proverbial head.

            Excellent post. Thank you.

          2. Nick says:

            Yes, because a tax dollar has never been spent on the current car transportation structure. Not on roads, fueling regulations, oil pipelines, blah, blah, blah.

          3. io says:

            Jack, first, you might have missed the fact Tesla fully repaid its DoE loan a while back already. The company doesn’t owe the public any money.
            This loan, I might add, like similar ones, was the result of a program started under Bush — but nice try injecting politics into this topic.

            Second and most importantly, I tend to agree with you that government subsidies should be reduced or eliminated, but I’d argue that we should focus on larger, actually meaningful targets, and not some small business actually creating wealth in the country instead of abroad.
            More specifically: http://priceofoil.org/fossil-fuel-subsidies/

            1. rotorhead1871 says:

              tesla is building their whole super charger network basically free of charge by selling $$10 million in pollution credits..they are knee deep in getting tax dollars to fund their company….

              1. Wrong questions says:

                Selling carbon credits is not taxpayer supported.. Oh yeah.45 car fires on Baltimore beltway past 2 weeks alone.

          4. Martha says:

            Yup! Always comes down to that! What about poor people? Don’t you care about them. They cannot afford to comply with this bunch of nonsense. I am more concerned with people than ideology. Try being one. Instead of a fluffy cloud head!

          5. Koz says:

            Check your facts Wile E

          6. Jeff D says:

            Loan has already been paid back. Your taxpayers are out there buying the cars that they want including electric if they want. It is just sad that people have to take a car fire, any car fire, and turn it into a political debate that has nothing to do with why it’s on fire. Sorry, the politicians, conservative, liberal, or otherwise, are not going around making cars catch on fire. I don’t understand why, if you don’t like electric vehicles, you would come to a website called InsideEVs and complain.

            1. deb says:

              i test drove the Tesla and i like it, i like the fact that i can order this car with non-leather interior since i am vegan. do you know that it takes 12 animals for the leather in cars. now that i have a problem with. i am surprised that Tesla gives u a choice of leather or not. being an environmental company, they should know that the mass cruel factory farming is a large part of destroying our environment today.

      2. Spec9 says:

        Looks like some message board administration is needed to deal with off-topic trolls.

      3. Rick says:

        Yes Mr Tea Bagger if you hate technology why are you using the Communist internet created by the Government?

        1. levotb says:

          I thought Al Gore discovered the internet…

          1. Steven says:

            I gave him the idea for it!

          2. Jonathan Baker says:

            Didn’t he say that he invented it? 8^)

    3. Kevin Stowell says:

      That’s not really what happened there. The driver was listening to La Paloma Blanca, sung by Slim Whitman and for the 7th time, and his head exploded.

    4. fthomascain says:

      Another fine example of the “green” industry. A very expensive car, most cannot afford that destroys itself. Kind of like most programs the Democrats create.

      1. Tom Taylor says:

        Tesla is a cutting edge company and is creating the future. Why try to make this a political issue?
        I would love to own one but can’t justify buying an automobile that expensive – they do depreciate, just like all other automobiles. If $100K were in the budget for toys I would want one!

      2. Jeff D says:

        The Model S is the same price a any other car in its class. Those cars are not affordable to most people either. Those cars also run over things and catch fire. As for the particular political view of the people driving either the Tesla or other cars in its class, I’m sure that it is varied. If you don’t want to buy a Tesla, that’s fine, but there is no need to come on a comment board that is clearly for people interested in electric vehicles and make insulting uninformed comments.

      3. muchski says:

        @fthomascain
        your comment is nothing more than hyperbolized non-facts. The “green” industry will be important so we can continue to live on this planet before we set into action climate change that will persist for many centuries. Over 95% of scientists agree climate change is a very real threat and it is caused by humans. It is not debate it is a matter of survival of our species on Earth. Electric vehicles are better for the environment even on a dirty grid as ICEs are horribly inefficient and waste 3/4 of more of the energy in gasoline as heat. The grid also has to clean up so unlike gasoline cars electric cars will become exponentially cleaner over the next few decades. Electric cars are also improving at a remarkable pace and once range is overcome in an affordable way there will be no reason to run our cars on gas.

        You are clearly very cynical about protecting the environment, electric cars, and democrats. What’s your solution to fix the world? Profit over people and the environment?

        1. allah_speaking says:

          >Over 95% of scientists agree climate change is a very real threat and it is caused by humans.

          I loathe liars. Google Burt Rutan climate change … read the pdf

          Clues are seldom free, but today I’m feeling generous.

          1. Foo says:

            Haha.. I saw that on Fox News too.

  1. Spec9 says:

    Ruh-Roh as Scooby would say. This is not going to go over well. I don’t know if the cobalt-using chemistry that they use is such a good idea. It gets nice energy density but I think that makes it more susceptible to fires.

    I suspect the stock is gonna drop more tomorrow. Isn’t there some news maxim that says something like once is an incident, twice is a coincidence but three times is a pattern?

    1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

      Concern, but so far it’s still _safe_. As long as it remains safe Tesla can take time to investigate, come up with a modification that shields the battery better and if possible gradually make the change to customer cars.

      1. The Oracle says:

        Predictably, the “green” energy cheerleaders will do what they can to put a happy face on anything that goes wrong with their pipe dreams. But why would anyone with a modicum of sense even want to bother with any of this stuff that’s demonstrably not ready for prime time? These little “plug-n-pray” cars are under-powered and over-priced, and then they go up in an exciting spray of sparks. What’s not to like?

        1. sven says:

          You’re saying the Tesla Model S is under-powered? Please put down the crack pipe.

          1. grant says:

            Yes, particularly when they are a pile of ashes on the side of the road.

            1. sven says:

              Grant, you should really get out of your mother’s basement more often.

            2. Mint says:

              As are 150,000+ cars with combustion engines that catch fire every year.

              What’s your point?

            3. 3 out of 20,000 cars catch fire in a FIRST generation model… That’s pretty good for any car.

              People that resist technology are trash.

              1. Tom Taylor says:

                Tech-fearful people shouldn’t be called trash…that word should be reserved for political types.
                But I agree that people should expect some bugs/issues -especially with beta release technology.
                Did you know certain year(s) Toyota Camrys catch fire? That used to be America’s top seller!
                I have no interest or part in the “green” movement and think most people who do buy into that are not particularly bright. But fuel cell technology, nuclear energy, and electric ARE the future. Stop calling people names when you don’t even understand what the argument is about!

                1. sven says:

                  Tech-fearful people = Luddites

                2. gearbox says:

                  Certain Camrys catch fire? ………Really? I’ve worked for Toyota, Corporate 17 years. I was around Toyota when the RT-43, Crowns1st showed up here in the states I own a very busy Toyota/Subaru independent service facility. At no time did I hear of any fire concerns about Camrys/Solaras as ongoing issues. Plz fill me in.

                3. Rick says:

                  Yes Toyota catch fires too but no one pay attention

                  DETROIT – Federal safety regulators are investigating reports of fires in the driver’s side doors of 2007 Toyota Camry sedans and RAV-4 crossover SUVs.

                  The probe could affect as many as 830,000 vehicles, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Friday in documents posted on its website. The vehicles have not been recalled.

                  The fires appear to start in the power window switch on the door. Six fires have been reported to the agency, but NHTSA has no reports of anyone being hurt. The agency said it started the investigation on Monday.

              2. rotorhead1871 says:

                tesla is building their whole super charger network basically free of charge by selling $$10 million in pollution credits..they are knee deep in getting tax dollars to fund their company….

                1. io says:

                  Other manufacturers buy credits from them, not the government.
                  There is no public money in Tesla. You must be thinking of GM or Ford…

        2. Richard says:

          0 to 60 in 5.4 seconds with a top speed of 125 mph is under-powered??? The only thing that makes sense in what you said is “over-priced”. Even the Chevy Volt has plenty of power.

          As for vehicle fires, this article does not make sense. ” Also according to the NFPA, 33 car fires are reported every hour across the country, with one person per day dying in a car fire accident in the years between 2002 and 2005. ” Chandler law group VA. I personally know one teen-ager who burned to death in a Chevy Suburban. Oddly enough it was gas powered and somehow it caught fire. Car fires happen all of the time… but suddenly when the Tesla catches fire from and accident it is as if they have never happened.

          I am not a “green-energy cheerleader”… I drive a 2012 Ford f-150 with a 5.0 V-8 my wife drives a Honda Pilot… I am a conservative that lives in Texas. I believe that electric is the future of transportation… because of several factors… electric motors unlike ICE have few moving parts… therefore they last for a long time. electric motors can be sized to any application. Electric cars do not need a transmission. The cost of the battery is the one area that we are going to have to wait for, but I can tell you that when the day comes where I can drive 50 miles in my F-150 without using gas then I am going to buy one.

          1. Oscarphone says:

            “The cost of the battery is the one area that we are going to have to wait for . . .”

            Battery fires are a continuing problem (started in earnest with Apple laptops) and so is range. In fact the two a interrelated. Richard, rechargeable battery technology is over a century old at this point. Battery use in cars dates to 1888. Don’t you think that they would have worked out the kinks by now? If it wasn’t for Obama throwing millions into the likes of Tesla, A123 Fisker, etc. these wouldn’t even be on the road at this point.

            1. io says:

              What you refer to is the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing loan program, which was created under Bush.

              Also FYI, gas has been used in cars for even longer than batteries (like it mattered), and is the cause of dramatically more fires; deadly ones too.
              http://www.nfpa.org/research/fire-statistics/the-us-fire-problem/highway-vehicle-fires

              1. Eric says:

                io, there are dramatically more gas-powered vehicles, so of course there would be dramatically more fires. So your argument is void. If you cited a percentage study between electric/gas fires, that would be a better citation. And yes, I am too lazy to do the research myself.

                1. io says:

                  Oh geez…
                  http://www.lmgtfy.com/?q=number+passenger+vehicles+%22united+states%22

                  254 million vehicles in 2009, 190’000 fires that year alone. Every year, one out of every 1340 or so gas vehicles goes up in flames.

                  EVs: roughly 20k from Tesla, over 100k from Renaut-Nissan, 22k+ from Mitsubishi… 3 fires (none of them spontaneous) since introduction, starting 2010/2011 — so that’s almost 100x less frequent than gas cars.

                  There, is it clear enough now?

              2. Jonathan Baker says:

                You are exposing “Oscarphone” to the facts. Don’t do that! 8^D

            2. Tom Taylor says:

              Your argument is not valid, Oscarphone. It took Edison over 1000 trys to build a workable electric lamp…and that lamp today is far from perfect. Lightbulbs have existed over 100 years, too. Shouldn’t they be much better by now??!!
              Over the last 50 years battery technology has gotten MUCH better.An example… look at the lowly “D” cell used in many consumer flashlights – compare the old Ray O Vac from 1960 to the Alkaline Energizer of 2013 and then explain to me how battery technology has not got better.
              BTW…the technology used in EV battery construction is much different then that used in 1888. Battery theory hasn’t changed much but it has been refined greatly…
              I believe we will see much better battery and powertrain efficiencies in the future. I, too, look forward to my first EV.

          2. Thomas J. Thias says:

            Richard,
            Would you by chance consider a GM based Truck?
            1) Up to 35 miles ALL ELECTRIC? / $2.50 Electric Cost/Av.
            2) 400 HP
            3) 10,000 lbs Tow
            4) 100 MPG – Distance Traveled Vs. Gas Used!
            5) 2/4 Ton 4X4 Crew Cab-

            http://www.viamotors.com/powertrain/
            http://www.viamotors.com/

            1. sven says:

              Thomas you forgot to list the 6th and most important point.

              6) Starting price is a whopping $79,000 in volume, which means if you’re buying only one pickup truck, it’s going to cost considerable more!

          3. rotorhead1871 says:

            the motor is great….the car is great…..the battery is the problem……right now tesla production and delivery is limited by battery production….as lithium technology attempts to go mainstream in a big way…….lithium will be the limiting factor…..a much better way to go is fuel cell….

        3. Oracle of nothing says:

          Under powered? Obviously someone talking out of their butt and has never driver one. Stop commenting on things you have no experience with.

          1. rotorhead1871 says:

            its sustainable power density and replenishment that is the issue…..

            just some easy number calculations show the disparities and efficiency involved: the 85kw/hr battery holds the energy of about 2 gallons of gas (290,000 btu)..tesla says range is about 160-240…based on 60 mph….above that speed the battery gets eaten pretty fast….now to charge it: MANY HOURS….at 220V, so the car is very efficient….say 80-100 mpg equivalent…but it takes HOURS to replenish…..how fast can you pump 2 gallons of gas???—case closed so far….to be competitive over distance with a gas car at 80 mph the tesla needs a battery about 300KW/hr that can -be charged any where in 15 minutes….with current chemistry—aint going to happen…….so tesla needs to stay on the 150 mile teather to the charger…..ENJOY!!

            1. sven says:

              FYI, the Tesla Model S is designed to allow a fast battery swap, exchanging your battery for a fully charged battery in less than half the time it takes to refill a gas tank. Tesla’s Supercharger stations will have a Battery Swap machine that will change out the battery in 90 SECONDS for the cost of an average tank of gas. ENJOY!!!

              http://www.teslamotors.com/batteryswap

        4. Jeff D says:

          Not everyone that buys a Tesla does so because it is “green”. Also you might want to actually read up on what you want to comment about. A Model S could never logically be called small or underpowered in a debate and be taken seriously. As stated in previous comments, there is no need for the hate. You are not being forced to buy a car that you do not want. We are not going to, for example, go on a Corvette fan site and trash them for liking them, even though one or two may have caught fire in a collision at some point.

        5. Rick says:

          What car do you drive, let’s google fires on your brand.

        6. muchski says:

          Coal and fossil fuel loving cynics which you certainly sound like will do everything to preserve the current ethos of profit and greed over the environment and people. Electric cars are not under powered, that is just an ignorant statement, test drive one and the 100% instant torque and subsequent peppiness in even the most basic model will surprise you. Teslas are faster than Porsche 911s, I hardly call that underpowered. Damage to a fuel tank or fuel line is much more explosive and deadly than a punctured battery cell. With no fatalities in a an electric car plug-n-pray is such an ignorant statement. I’m hoping you can do a bit more research next time and make an informed statement rather than spew fixed beliefs that have no rational or scientific basis.

          1. RobertEd says:

            Quote:
            “Teslas are faster than Porsche 911s, I hardly call that underpowered.”

            Which 911 are you talking about? I don’t think the Tesla is faster than a Porsche 911.

            Better batteries and a network of quick charge stations combined with a 30,000 dollar model and it might make sense. Seems to me it’s just a really neat rich guy’s toy…for now.

            1. Jonathan Baker says:

              You are wise to ask: 2013 Porsche Carrera 911 0-60 in 4.3 seconds and the 1/4 mile in 12.7 seconds. 2013 Model S Performance 0-60 in 3.9 seconds and the 1/4 mile in 12.4 seconds. Source: http://www.zeroto60times.com

              But that is not to say that the Model S Performance will be faster that ALL the Porsche 911 models.

    2. AT says:

      Yes, I think we can be pretty sure of these two facts:
      1) Model S is very safe
      2) Cobalt-based batteries take fire easily (this has always been very well known, and Tesla’s skill is in keeping battery fires localized)
      So, are these fires a big issue or not?
      Having just signed a contract with Panasonic, I think Tesla can only stress safety-irrespective-of-localized-fires, and remark that gas tanks are anyway much more dangerous – not just in principle, but as shown in innumerable events (beautiful comment bu Foo, below)

      Actually, probably the fact that in ICE cars fires are typically devastating and extremely dangerous is what makes people think that that’s the case for any car.
      Again, for Teslas that might not hold true.
      As Andrei Gloaba says in his comment below, just look at statistics of
      - accidents, injuries and deaths per miles driven
      for Tesla and Model S in particular, and see how they compare with general statistics.
      Probably nobody beats Tesla and Model S.

      Are these fires big issues for other aspects?
      - economic aspect (maybe without fires the car could be fixed, even in the case of many serious accidents). That’s for you to answer.
      - image. Here comes the need for Tesla (and all of us) to stress the points mentioned above.

      1. Dax says:

        The problem here is, that they appear to light up from every bump, unlike gasoline and diesel vehicles where the probability of a fire in an accident is actually surprisingly low thanks to safety features like negative pressure fuel tanks that won’t let it leak out once the fuel pump shuts off. Ever notice that hiss when you open the cap to refill? It’s because the fuel draws a slight vacuum inside as it’s being pumped out to the engine.

        Only 2% of car fires start from the gasoline tank or fuel lines; most of them actually start from – you guessed it – faulty electronics. In a crash, it’s usually the crushed wire harnesses and other electronics that develop a short circuit and heat up the surrounding plastics and fabrics. By the time the gasoline lights up, the car has been on fire for quite a while.

        The fundamental problem is that a fire needs fuel, oxygen and heat. A gasoline in a tank only has one of these, and the others must be brought from outside. Unless the tank itself is punctured, it will take considerable time before it heats up enough to turn into gas and vent out to burn.

        A lithium battery on the other hand has fuel in the form of organic solvents used as the electrolyte, and means to sustain a hot chemical fire with the energy stored in the battery without oxygen from the outside. It has all the components to ignite and burn built right in just waiting for a sufficient injury to set it off. That’s also the reason why they’re so difficult to put out.

        1. The Chris says:

          How is it that the three fires mentioned above “appear to light up from every bump” ???
          1. Hitting a giant piece of metal at 70MPH isn’t a “bump”
          2. Drunk driving, plowing your car into an electrified fence and then hitting a wall isn’t a “bump”
          3. There’s nothing in this article, or anywhere else that shows a “bump” caused the fire. In fact, there isn’t even a HINT as to what caused this fire.

          Tesla batteries have fire walled cell protection. There are 16 of these fire compartments, and they have fire vents that blow the fire out the side of the car, safely. That means the battery pack is DESIGNED with fire safety built in! Fire #1 had a single cell catch fire after 25 tons of force punctured the 1/4″ metal protection. The fire got bigger when the fire dept incorrectly punctured the TOP of the battery cell to get at it. They didn’t follow the correct procedure.

          Where is the built in fire safety of an ICE’s gas tank? Oil pan? Power steering reservoir? THEY DON’T HAVE ANY!

          1. Gyrk says:

            You can’t ignite oil from a car engine with a cigarette lighter…

            1. Foo says:

              Hey… I think your tank of your Guzzler3000 might be empty. Why don’t you go take your cigarette lighter, pop your gas cap, and hold a flame to see if there’s any gas in there! Oh wait… it just exploded and killed you. Sorry about that. My bad.

              1. Eric says:

                Gas is technically a by-product of oil. What he said still holds true. Engine oil would take much more heat to make it ignite as compared to gasoline. Much more. Your comment is a poor response.

                1. Foo says:

                  Nonsense. Comparing lighting the engine oil to a battery fire was pretty dumb. Comparing the battery fire to a gasoline tank explosion would have been much smarter.

                  In the US alone there is one vehicle fire every 96 seconds. Were’s the outrage about all these dangerous oil-powered vehicles?

            2. Robert says:

              Thanks Gyrk.

            3. Jonathan Baker says:

              Can you light up the battery in the Model S with a cigarette lighter? Your analogy needs major work.

    3. Dimbo says:

      Uh…

      The batteries don’t burn. The terror-hype over modern batteries was fueled (if I don’t pun it, no one will) … by the earlier attempts at making decent batteries: Primary Lithium. The Lithium production process is still foul, but after the chemistry changes, the Lithium is bound very tightly into the electrolyte. Not your father’s Lithiums, and NOT the Lithium your father made you take as a child.

      If you can tolerate “facts”, look at the “Lithium Ion Rechargeable Batteries Technical Handbook” published by Sony, the company who released the first commercial LiIons.

      Behold what “real engineers” do:

      Take a fully charged (>3.9v) Lithium-Ion cell and place it in a device that creates a “dead short” (i.e. <1Ohm) until all the voltage is gone. Sony did. Nothing much happened. ~150C might burn your fingers, but it won't burn your car.

      Smash one. Sony did. No big deal. Do that again differently (perpendicular vs. parallel). Same difference. No "big-a bad-a boom".

      OTOH, discharge one through a resistive device (like a circuit board) which is on or near a flammable substance (like a circuit board!!) and see what happens.

      All I can see ANY of you doing is excusing Tesla's non-safe design flaws by blaming the easy scapegoat, magic batteries. Believing doesn't make something true, no matter how much you want it. Truth does.

      Truth Will Set You Free.

      ~ Gasaholics Anonymous Society

  2. BigOilPayOff says:

    Today too! Driver of an Audi R8 had engine trouble and pulled over just before the car caught fire!

    http://www.wlwt.com/news/local-news/news-northern-kentucky/car-catches-fire-causes-delays-on-i7175/-/13608792/20586614/-/85l7xr/-/index.html

  3. Bill Howland says:

    And to think I was being called a traitor for being concerned about this… Admittedly, this seems to be the smallest fire of the 3. For the record, I have 2 ev’s, one of them is a Tesla, and both have VERY SAFE battery packs.

    1. Taser54 says:

      The Model S is a fantastic car, but upon release it was loaded with design choices that needed to be addressed. The failure to for some fans to even consider that Tesla needs to fix things on the model S represents a detachment from reality.

      1. Stuart22 says:

        How true. Kind of a cult worship/hate mentality (worship = Ghosn, Tesla; hate = GM) that suppresses freedom of thought and ultimately progress.

      2. Bloggin says:

        It seems the first/front battery cell chamber needs to become a crash barrier to protect the rest of the battery pack. Very much like traditional ICE vehicles have the underbody of the front/rear seats to protect the gas tank under the trunk area.

        The Tesla may lose some battery capacity, but that’s until higher capacity batteries are developed for the smaller space.

        I am sure GM and Ford are paying attention as they develop their own 200+ mile EVs.

        But it is odd to have two Tesla Model S sedans both run over metal road debris and catch fire within 5 weeks.

        1. sven says:

          Gas tanks on ICE vehicles haven’t been located under the trunk area for at least 20 years.

        2. Grant Gerke says:

          “…But it is odd to have two Tesla Model S sedans both run over metal road debris and catch fire within 5 weeks.”

          –It is odd, isn’t it.

          1. muchski says:

            Big Oil WOULD stoop this low to preserve their lucrative status quo. If they did anything like this I hope it sees the light of day!

            1. Ralph says:

              Electric car = Unsafe At Any Speed? Where’s Ralph Nader when you need him??

    2. Nate says:

      These threads usually have some knee jerk reactions on both sides.

    3. Jeff D says:

      There is no problem in being concerned. Even with all that Tesla has done to try to avoid fires, as all automotive companies should be doing, they still catch fire. They can continue to do more. I think one thing with this issue is that people don’t want it to go past concern and end up in overreaction, which some people have.

  4. Tesla Fan says:

    Why is the Model S catching on fire? thats the question, enough with all of the defending of the car, 3 fires, something is up with the car and that needs to be looked into. this crash there’s barely any damage done to the car.

    1. Foo says:

      Why are all these non-electric burning and/or exploding? Every time I see a report, it always seems to have something to do with the tank of propulsion liquid… clearly something is up with that. Someone should investigate. Maybe it’s not safe?! I mean, I drive one of these things!

      1. Tesla Fan says:

        You do realize that im a Tesla Fan right? we all know about “gas cars not being safe” but regardless of all of this mindless defending there have been 3 fires, all in the same area, something is up with the car and hopefully it gets fixed because this isnt a good look for tesla.

        1. Foo says:

          Yeah, and gas tanks always seem to blow up in the gas tank area. Something is up with that. Oh wait… it’s the gas tank.

          A damaged high-voltage battery is going to catch on fire in the damaged battery area. Not really a mystery. These poor Teslas are being driven over sharp pieces of metal at high speed. What do you think is going to happen? — to ANY car?

          At least the Teslas don’t blow up immediately, and have a thick slab of battery preventing the objects from penetrating the cabin. And, apparently, in all of these cases, the car has both warned and given the driver ample time to safely stop and exit the vehicle.

          Let’s keep things in perspective… there is one gasoline-powered vehicle fire every 96 frickin’ seconds in the US alone. And none of those cars had a “gas tank explosion” warning light on the dashboard. Undoubtedly, people were seriously injured, or were burned alive in many of these incidents. It’s an everyday thing. Where’s the outrage?

    2. Dave R says:

      The first two are pretty clear why they caught on fire. This last one, we don’t have enough facts about the situation yet.

      Still, not good news for Tesla, especially for stock holders. I expect the stock to take another big hit tomorrow unless more facts about this issue are released.

    3. Spec9 says:

      Apparently from short-circuited battery cells that are being short-circuited due to metallic penetrations.

  5. Andrei Gloaba says:

    I would like TESLA to make public the total number of cars produced (all of Tesla & only Model S), the total number of accidents involving a Tesla (all of Tesla & only Model S), the number of people injured (all of Tesla & only Model S), the number of people who died while driving a Tesla (all of Tesla & only Model S). You can make a statistics form that very easy.
    Let’s see who can beat that!!!!!

    1. Tesla Fan says:

      thats cool, but 3 fires have occurred, is that no big deal? something is causing these fires in the front, it needs to be looked into and fixed.

    2. From earnings report Tuesday: 19,000 Model S’s delivered. So far to date, no reports of a human fatality in a Model S that was involved in an accident.

      Not understanding the tabloid mentality to post firely S pictures before facts have been gathered. Perhaps attention is in amazement that occupants have exited the vehicle without significant injury?

      Perhaps we could place a little more focus on the hundreds of vehice accidents where occupents don’t walk away without injury! Is sad the number of lives lost each year as a result of distracted drivers.

  6. Peter says:

    I have a proposal.

    Stop crashing and the Teslas will stop catching fire :)

    1. Phr3d says:

      agreed — I think we need to skip the fires per vehicles sold et al exploration and instead look up statistics about how many people run over huge chunks of stuff in the road per 1000mi driven and see if we have an unintended acceleration issue(aka extreme driver error), or ‘look at the neat graphics all over my dash’ issue, or an outward-visibility issue..
      Since we know the car has stellar handling, how are these two Tesla drivers unable to steer around something big enough to destroy their undercarriage..

  7. drpawansharma says:

    What happens to a tesla after it burns. Does tesla remunerate the driver or insurance companies bear the costs. Are battery fires covered under insurance.

    1. JJ says:

      …No…Obama will give them a new one, plus $5,000.00 in food stamps, and a new Obama phone…(but, he’ll have to take away their health insurance, and their first born son to send to Kenya to work in his relative’s fields…)

      1. Robert says:

        How crass.

      2. Spec9 says:

        Man, there are some sore losers out there today.

        1. Gary H says:

          I wouldn’t even bother calling them sore.

  8. crashy says:

    none of the Tesla fires seem to be spontaneous combustion, since there is nothing to combust unless caused by accident or road debris. This one without any information from the driver, must wait to determine the cause.

  9. Lithium is an Alkali Metal and very reactive (think of Sodium in school chemistry lessons). A LiON battery stores about 140Wh/kg of electrical energy. Tesla are driving the technology hard to get range. Cost is driving volume battery manufacture but what about Quality Control? Is this a bad batch coming through?
    A Lithium fire is not a normal fire, it’s a near explosion, very rapid and very hot. It cannot be put out with water. My concern is that the next fire may result in fatalities.

    Elon Musk is aware of Metal-Air batteries (‘semi-fuel cells’) and has patented recently in that field. These batteries have the advantages of safety (they can’t explode), cost (about a third of LiON) and have about 10x the range of LiON.

    Tesla has made EVs real and it would be a great shame if they went down like Fisker because they’re not using the right battery technology.

    1. Big Solar says:

      Is it the technology or the super fast charging? Charging those batteries at 480v and 120 Amp cant bee good. I think that was the problem with the airplane batteries too. I have an ev and have never needed to use more than 110v (9 amps) nor have I had to use a public charger. Thats driving 1100 miles per month too!

    2. philba says:

      Trevor, glad you took chem 101 but did you know that you probably have at least a pound of sodium sitting in your kitchen right now. I’d be very worried out those sodium kitchen fires. point is, let’s understand the chemistry a little better before making grand pronouncements.

      You make it sound like Tesla deliberately avoided using a safer and better technology. All they have to do just swap them out and, viola!, the car is safer, better. You wouldn’t admit that maybe the technology is quite ready or has other drawbacks now would you?

      As to the fires. I think a more likely culprit is an accident induced short that causes high temp which then starts something on fire – plastic of some sort probably. But speculation is pretty much useless until we know more.

      I’m a Tesla owner and believe the car is basically safe. Probably safer than all other cars. But I also want Tesla/Elon to get to the bottom of this and make the car even safer.

      And, about the stock price. I avoided buying in the last 6 months because I believed it was vastly overpriced. But this smells like a buying opportunity coming up.

      1. philcb says:

        pound of sodium in your kitchen … yeah the properties of NaCl are just like those of pure Na. You sound as if you took something more than chem101 so you know the absurdity of what you just wrote. Do yourself a favor and take your own advice.

        1. Mint says:

          WHOOSH.

          Buddy, the properties of Li atoms in a lithium-ion battery aren’t like those of pure Li either.

          1. john says:

            So a lithium ion car battery that catches fire doesn’t burn very rapidly and very hot, and it’s not impossible to put out the fire with water? Is that what you’re implying? I didn’t think so.

      2. Grant Gerke says:

        Agreed on the buying opportunity, especially if it breaks through to the $110 range.

  10. Taser54 says:

    Not looking good for a design choice made by Tesla.

    1. Dan Frederiksen says:

      As long as the cars don’t spontaneously catch on fire and it’s only because nitwits can’t drive then it’s no disaster. However given the attention and the ignorance of the world it would probably be good if they had designed it in such a way that it wasn’t an almost sure thing that it would catch fire in a crash. I imagine some redesign is underway as we speak.

      1. Jeff D says:

        Maybe something that would divert road debris away from the batteries, like a cow catcher.

  11. Thomas says:

    US friends, you can check China’s BYD E6 mobile which is much much better then the so called Tesla.

    http://bydauto.com/na/auto/index.html#

    1. Foo says:

      Huh? — “so called” Tesla? It is called Telsa.

      1. MisNomer says:

        Would a real Tesla use DC?

  12. Thomas says:

    sorry, I mean E6 auto. :D

  13. David Murray says:

    Personally, these fire stories would still have no effect on my decision to buy a Tesla (assuming I had the money) but I do fear at this point for Tesla’s reputation because people will not take the time to understand the relative safety of these cars even when comparing the ones that catch on fire to gasoline cars that catch fire. Since Tesla is the shining beacon of the EV industry I fear that their success/failure will also determine the fate of all other plug-ins. If Tesla goes under, most of the other car manufacturers will have nothing left to compete with and either stop producing EVs or at least stop aspiring to produce better EVs.

    1. Taser54 says:

      Tesla will not go under. It will have to address this via a recall or customer service enhancement.

      Stock watchers, today should be an opportunity to buy into Tesla.

      1. Nate says:

        I never did this before, as I doubt I can consistently time the market. I traded for a share this morning after first reading this article. I may not make much, or may even loose most of it. I just thought it would be fun to watch. If it does well maybe I’ll put it towards a deposit on a 3rd generation model.

      2. Robert Curry says:

        Is there a CONSPIRACY to make Tesla look bad, by someone DELIBERATELY causing these incidents of car fires? Getting in front of a Tesla, and intentionally dropping debris in front of it, or setting up a similar situation on a roadwayknown to be traveled by a Tesla user, definitely seems POSSIBLE! (There is, after all, MONEY to be made in discrediting Tesla and electric vehicles!)–More effort should be expended in determining HOW and from WHERE these foriegn objects came to be in the roadway! Perhaps all electric vehicles should be equipped with high resolution “Dash Cameras” to record anything dropped ahead of them, or vehicles that suddenly pass them and disappear, shortly before the electric vehicle encounters a piece of roadway debris? ALL posibilities should be carefully investigated!

  14. Nelson says:

    With all this interest in car fires someone should start a car-fires.com with blogs about every reported car fire. Maybe it would scare people into not buying cars. Maybe auto manufacturers would pay the owner money to close down the site. $$

    NPNS!
    Volt#671

    1. MDEV says:

      Nelson- +1

      1. kdawg says:

        Lots of more likely ways to die. (don’t miss the 2 large blue boxes, Heart Disease & Cancer).

        1. Robert says:

          Look at KDawgs graphic above:

          There are approx. 19000 Teslas on the road and three have caught fire. That’s 1 in 6333.

          Conclusion, if you’re driving a Tesla Model S, you are as likely to hit a big chunk of metal in the road, which will lead to a controllable battery fire, (which can be extinguished and you won’t be injured) as a normal person has of dying in a plane crash or dying because of firearms discharge.

          If you ignore the drink driving accident (Mexico) those odds become more favourable

  15. Francis L says:

    And after that, there are still people to believe that hydrogen is the future? If we make such a big deal with Tesla, imagine what it will be if an hydrogen car makes a accident!

    I hope that slowly, people will get bore by those king of news, and just realize that their ICE car isn’t safer (and probably worst). Then, they will accept this problem, as they accept the same problem for ICE.

  16. Nelson says:

    Part of Tesla’s investigation into this fire incident should include a comprehensive look at the drivers TSLA stock holdings and options trading history. I would even go as far as to investigate if the driver has recently received a large sum of money. The devil is around every corner and under every rock.

    NPNS!
    Volt#671

    1. philba says:

      Uh, are you saying these people purposely destroyed their car so they can get a good price on TSLA? Got any tin foil hats?

    2. sven says:

      Nelson, EV fanboy conspiracy theories like yours don’t help the EV movement.

  17. JBar595 says:

    They will get it right, when they do burn down the plant they will cash in on the insurance and funnel it back to Obama.

    1. MDEV says:

      Another smart Tea Bagger

    2. Foo says:

      Yeee-haawwww… who needs dentists either?!?!

  18. irewire says:

    Tesla has a weight problem. The batteries weigh a ton (figuratively speaking) and there’s not much left so you get a paper thin body. The only two options is less batteries or a car that weighs a ton either way equals less mileage between charges so deal with it Tesla

    1. Nikolai says:

      re: irewire
      “November 7, 2013 at 10:56 am
      Tesla has a weight problem. The batteries weigh a ton (figuratively speaking) and there’s not much left so you get a paper thin body. The only two options is less batteries or a car that weighs a ton either way equals less mileage between charges so deal with it Tesla”

      Please do a bit of research before you post. The battery pack of the Tesla is a structural element. There was no skimping on the design of the passenger cabin. On the contrary, Model S was not designed to “game” the NHTSA crash safety tests. Which is why it was rated the safest car ever tested. Not having an engine in front or back also allows for an extended crumple zone, and more gradual deceleration during a crash. Not to mention that you won’t have an engine, hot oil, fuel and hot exhaust pipes pushed into the passenger cabin and between the front seats in the event of a head-on collision.

      1. Donw1234 says:

        @Nikolai

        “Not to mention that you won’t have an engine, hot oil, fuel and hot exhaust pipes pushed into the passenger cabin and between the front seats in the event of a head-on collision.”

        No, you will just have a giant battery behind you that is prone to catch fire!

        1. kdawg says:

          The battery is in the floor, not behind the driver.

  19. P_Ang says:

    Interesting how the Tesla fire reports always change once Tesla gets ahold of them. “Fire that spontaneously broke out was due to global warming or something, Tesla is sure of it!” Then everything is fine, no need to sue a bankrupt company now that they took the money and ran…

    1. Grant Gerke says:

      You meant Fox Spews, right?

  20. ALRUI says:

    “could have” cost him his life – key words! Any accident “could” injur or kill you, lets get beyond the obvious folks, are we just trying to fill space?

  21. Evil Attorney says:

    Jay, does the NHTSA publish data on how many Volt and Leaf fires have occurred over the last 3 years? I am interested to see a comparison with the Model S so far.

    1. David says:

      AFAIK, there’s not a single reported case of a fire in a Volt or LEAF other than a well publicized incident with the Volt after a crash TEST, weeks later with the car sitting on its side, coolant leaked, caused a short which lead to a fire. Lots of press. Fox ran with it. GM took it seriously enough to make changes to the car to prevent that type of damage.
      If there were a fire in a LEAF or Volt is would get as much scrutiny as it does in a Tesla. Lithium ion battery fires are all the rage.
      Should note that there have been many more LEAFs and Volt sold vs. the Model S.
      As much as I love Tesla, this seems statistically significant.

  22. jeffhre says:

    “Isn’t there some news maxim that says something like once is an incident, twice is a coincidence but three times is a pattern?”

    A pattern of cars catching fire after the accidents? Or a pattern of a car saving it’s occupants from serious injury or death? What is the pattern that carries forward?

  23. Joe Johnson says:

    Why is there no loud outcry in the press like there was for the exploding Ford Pintos of 30 years ago? Could it be that such an outcry would work against their own political agenda of reducing/preventing “global warming/climate change”?

    1. jeffhre says:

      Because the real tragedy was averted by Pinto drivers wearing their tinfoil hats during rear end collisions. Which clearly saved them from imminent the deaths which were planned by said conspiracy.

      1. Joe Johnson says:

        Say what?

  24. David says:

    Eric: article update says vehicle “stuck” a tow hitch. Do you mean “struck”?

    Any technology which holds lots of energy can have an less controlled release of that energy especially during an accident. Metal air batteries have their own failure mode. Its basic physics. Lots of energy, little space, uncontrolled release is enough to start a fire. Doesn’t matter if its gas, hydrogen, metal air, lithium ion, nickel metal hydride, compressed air, nuclear, whatever.

    Its not unusual to get a fire in a gas vehicle, however 3 fires in quick succession doesn’t bode well for Tesla. The Nissan LEAF has sold many times more than the model S and there is not a single report of a battery fire in a LEAF worldwide. Statistically that seems like a significant discrepancy.

    Elon tried to lower the stock price, but he may get more than he bargained for.

    1. ModernMarvelFan says:

      Great questions and we know at least 5 significant Volt crashes covered by various “EV” sites, but none of them caught fire.

      Maybe the 2x energy density is at higher risk in fire…

  25. Glenn Jericho says:

    Cue massive outrage from Ralph Nader in 3… 2… 1…
    On second thought, don’t hold your breath.

    1. TeV says:

      wow, yet another first-time post from a new member who just so happens to be peddalling the ultra-conservative teabagger perspective. shocking!

      1. TeV says:

        You do realize that you don’t have to be a “member” to post on InsideEVs? You can also post under any name you want, even your name TeV. ;)

        Sincerely,
        Not the Real TeV

        1. staff says:

          But we do track everyone’s IP with their name and delete all malicious attempts at taking over someone’s ID. Don’t we qwerty/sven?

          Also of interest: just over 200 pieces of spam have been eliminated from this thread to at least attempt to keep it on the tracks (a site record)

          1. sven says:

            That’s good too know staff! But what about non-malicious takeovers of someone’s ID. I switched from qwerty to sven after someone else started posting as qwerty (non-maliciously). Is InsideEVs ever going to allow users to create sign-in accounts so that we can permanently keep our screen names and receive email alerts when someone responds to our posts?

            1. staff says:

              That is the problem of course with the open comment system. Yours was one of the few times this situation has arisen, the handle “qwerty” has actually been used by 3 different people; all apparently not aware of the other, at least the comments would indicate that.

              I think you have made the right move by switching to an ID away from something commonplace.

              InsideEVs does have the ability to create unique sign-in names, but it forces everyone to register in order to comment, which actually stifles the size and future growth of the community.

              Many people post the first few times with no intention of continually doing so (and they would not register to do so); and sometimes after leaving some random comments they enjoy the folks here and become regulars (like yourself)

              Until there is a good work around, this is best case. But we can protect your’s and everyone else’s uncommon ID names – or at lease make sure they are not being abused intentionally. We are pretty good about it, but you can always just drop a note in the comments if we miss something and we will be sure to fix it up.

              1. sven says:

                Thanks for the response. May I say that you’re doing a great job developing this website. I hope the InsideEV website/community continues to grow. :)

                1. Jay Cole says:

                  I can’t speak for everyone but certainly appreciate the thumbs up…although I suspect every likes a back pat as much as I do, lol.

                  /thanks

  26. somejackball says:

    they just tested one on Top Gear US.. i could see how these things might overheat or fry out.. lot of voltage to manage. not enough R&D??

    1. TeV says:

      you’ve clearly done all the research needed to make an informed decision on buying an electric vehicle.

  27. aki009 says:

    This isn’t all that surprising. There is a limit to the abuse that a battery can take, and the location of it isn’t exactly ideal.

    But these things can happen to gasoline powered vehicles, too. Years ago in California I saw a safety cone puncture the gas tank on a car ahead of me on a freeway. Later I learned that the car had caught fire and turned to a blackened frame, far worse than what the images here show of the Tesla.

  28. CLV says:

    OK….does it seem to anyone but me that the author of this news piece is going out of their way to “protect” the image of this car? Don’t jump to any premature conclusions? Toyota didn’t have this many before it was, “Get a Rope and Hang ‘em up!!” Liberal hypocrites….

    1. TeV says:

      i know, even-handed journalism a pain in the ass to your agenda?

  29. Wally says:

    Since when is running over (an object) a collision?
    Don’t we do that all the time in our regular vehicles?

  30. qwerty says:

    So when planes crash and hundreds die, do we shut down the airline industry?!?!?!?
    Or do we analyze what went wrong and improve on it and move on?

    ……..move on people or just stay with your old petrol suckling conveyance and continue to support the countries that want us dead.

    1. taser54 says:

      No but Elon Musk mocks the airplane builder. Perhaps the Weauxf Gods are moving into the transportation industry?

  31. goodgriefCB says:

    These cars really burn up the road don’t they?

    1. SerfCityHereWeCome says:

      Lol, whatever hasn’t already been scorched to cinders by the Volt, anyway.

  32. Nelson says:

    For those who do not and will never tow, can we get a picture of a tow hitch?
    https://www.google.com/search?q=tow+hitch&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=bwJ8Usv5BNTB4AOEu4DYDw&ved=0CAcQ_AUoAQ&biw=1024&bih=625

    There are many types did I miss the description of the tow hitch in the story?

    NPNS!
    Volt#671

    1. Jay Cole says:

      We have been waiting on that (more) specific information ourselves on the hitch. As soon as we round it up, we will update and or publish the complete report on its own.

    2. taser54 says:

      Most likely somthing like this. Remember now, we never saw a picture of the first piece of road debris that caused the first fire. I imagine we’ll not get a picture of this piece from Tesla.

      http://www.txtoyotaparts.com/images/1145.jpg

  33. fthomascain says:

    Another fine example of the “green” industry. A very expensive car, most cannot afford that destroys itself. Kind of like most programs the Democrats create.

    1. CSS says:

      Weeee! Having fun blindly supporting the 1% ?
      I’d laugh but the gains in power and wealth at the very top, helped by pawns such as yourself, are at the expense of most all of Americans. That includes you and me BTW ;)

    2. io says:

      When you grow up, you might realize that EVs and other advanced vehicles are much more than just Tesla, and are not about a particular political party, group or ideology.
      Among many other things, it’s about supporting American engineering, manufacturing, and energy independence. I might add climate and public health, but some people feel more comfortable ignoring obvious issues…

      1. Anon says:

        +1000. :)

  34. Warren says:

    There have been about 150K plug-in cars sold in the US so far. I haven’t heard of any catching fire in wrecks (on the road), except the Tesla S. My guess is that Tesla S drivers are averaging speeds much higher than drivers of other plug-ins.

    Your typical plug-in driver is an environmentalist, and concerned about range. I don’t think this is the demographic of most Tesla S owners.

    1. Nate says:

      “Your typical plug-in driver is an environmentalist, and concerned about range”

      A similar idea came up in the last thread. I don’t buy it.

      Just because a car is faster, doesn’t mean it is likely to be driven less safe. Any vehicle can be pushed beyond its limits. You can be driving the speed limit, but still be driving unsafely by following too closely.

      Your generalizations about demographics aren’t completely true. Spend some time on the GM-Volt forums and learn more. There are many reasons to buy a plug in vehicle, or an efficient vehicle in general. Some buyers care more about Energy Security than global warming. There are strong financial incentives that make them very economical due to low ‘fuel’ and maintenance cost, strong federal and in some cases state credits. Car pool lane access can decrease commute times. Also, some people like smooth electrical propulsion, and instantaneous torque response. A lot of Volt drivers use the Sport-L mode. Some maximize range, some maximize fun. There are 50,000 Volts on the road in the US alone, logging over 300 million EV miles (plus some gas miles). There has been enough time for those of us with lead feet to have caused fires, if it were the case that driving fast is cause of the fires.

      Also, how many Roadster fires like this have there been? Sales volume is less, but they have been on the road for longer. Compared to the Model S this car is much more about speed and much less about luxury and practical. If your theory were correct we’d see the same fires.

      Even if your assumption was correct, they don’t take into account that even safe drivers can be involved in accidents that are not there own fault, like this one.
      http://insideevs.com/video-owner-testimonial-shows-how-safe-chevy-volt-actually-is/

  35. Mark Gregory says:

    This is a simple problem to cure. There is a phenomenon when battery packs are used called thermo run away. All batteries temperatures have to be in plus or minus 1 degree. If one of the batteries temperatures get outside of the control limits you get thermo run away causing a fire. I know how to solve this problem, Maybe someone at Tesla will contact me.

  36. Attention says:

    TESLA was the true genius, a Christian, so that’s why they’re trying to disparage his name, whereas the plagiarist Einstein is propagandized into undeserved status.

  37. Davey says:

    How can I purchase the vehicles after they have been totaled by the insurance?

    I have some uses for those drivetrains…….

  38. SerfCityHereWeCome says:

    Just think how much more embarrassing these horror stories would be if they’d ever sold a second one.

  39. Anon says:

    Seems like the the anti-EV TeaBagger PR Folks are out in force on this one… This site’s user list must have jumped up within the last 24 hrs… :p

    1. TeaBagger says:

      I’d love to hear why ‘Anon’ thinks TeaBaggers are all “Anti-EV”. Certainly all of us, left and right alike, would like to see the US less dependent on foreign oil. So please, if not Anon, than someone else, please explain why TeaBaggers simply hate Electric Vehicles…..

      1. Anon says:

        Rhetorical. Brain studies of political conservatives have shown that many of these individuals have a heightened fear response. For those folks, fear can be generated by subtle changes to how we all live our lives. For example, having a black man for a president, having responsible gun laws, having women control their own reproductive rights, having same sex adults marry, or even letting others investigate alternative methods of transportation that don’t require gasoline.

        Normally, one would not suspect how others choose to live their lives would anger and upset others, but clearly, it does to some folks… It just depends where on the conservative spectrum you’re at.

        Here is a link to get your own research on the topic, going…

        http://m.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-human-beast/201104/conservatives-big-fear-brain-study-finds

    2. SuperTBagger says:

      This McCarthy-loving teabagger has a sweet hybrid Lexus… and thanks to some special tax deductions and a sweet loophole my attorney found, I saved $35K on the purchase of one of the most luxurious hybrids in production… and once they get a reliable EV on the market, I’ll be out there making a purchase :-)

      1. Foo says:

        So presumably you’re against government subsidies when they’re given to someone else (who might truly be in need), but when there’s a subsidy to be had for the purchase of a freekin luxury car, your wallet is wide open?

        You’re proof that those on the right are the absolute worst type of hypocrites.

  40. DaveT says:

    Recall is necessary.

    1. Anon says:

      Maybe a kevlar laminate front plate retrofit, for the front? *Shrugs*

      “If you don’t impail, it will not fail.” ;)

  41. Dave72 says:

    U.S. vehicle fires: 6 per 10,000 per year. No info on specific causes or seriousness of the fires, or age of vehicles.

    Tesla model S fires: 3 per 15,000(?) first year. All from road hazard, all serious, and all new vehicles.

    Sample is too small to conclude model S is more prone to serious fire problems. However, it does suggest model S has a specific fire problem that needs correction.

  42. TeaBagger says:

    ….I think what Teabaggers understand, and the left cannot grasp, is that electric cars are a wonderful idea…when the technology is ready. Meaning, when the auto manufacturer produces something of relative value, without having to be subsidized by unwilling tax payers.

    It’s bad enough that my paycheck is sacked for money to support people who don’t want to work. Now my paycheck is being wrung just a bit more so I can subsidize rich people who want to drive a Tesla.

    If this makes me a Teabagger…then I’m a bagger!

    1. Foo says:

      So you’re against the massive oil industry subsidies as well?

  43. Kevin says:

    On average, nearly 800 car fires occur per day in the US. EV’s are no more dangerous than a car carrying 20 gallons of fuel and about 2 gallons of engine/transmission oil with an electrical system as well.

  44. None says:

    Kind of a pity, same for Fisker. Nice looking vehicles, but electric was abandoned over 100 years as the main source of power for a car for a reason. Additionally, when you add it up, electric does far more harm to the environment than fossil fuels. And as with anything else, energy is energy out.

    I still expect Tesla to be a niche car player for some time, but I believe the uneducated promise so many wanted will never be realized.

    1. muchski says:

      Yes car history 100 years ago is the perfect evidence to draw modern day conclusions from. Wheels to well or total lifecycle analysis shows EVs are still superior. They spank ICEs when run on mostly hydroelectric or renewable sources. Also most well to wheels anaylses do not count the cost of oil spills, pipeline bursts, and other disasters or the cumulative costs of wars and securing oil overseas in foreign countries.

      Fact check what!

  45. Dave72 says:

    Clutch resorts to projections with ad hominum attacks, having no facts to present. You can look up “ad hominum” in the dictionary, Clutch.

    1. Clutch says:

      I’d look up if you’d spell it right. ad hominem. look it up.

      While you’re looking things up, try “straw man”, as it will resemble most of your misinformed (or fox-informed) opinions of EVs and the stupidity of clinging to old technologies.

  46. Michael1969 says:

    Ummm. Here’s a flash. Cars that use gasoline catch fire every day.

  47. Pokey says:

    Two thoughts. One: There is enough oil and natural gas to supply all of our energy needs for the next 150 years. Batteries are a very old technology and they still suffer from the same maladies they did when they were first tried on cars. Two: Environmentalism is no different than religion, there is no scientific basis for such a discipline. Global warming is just a hoax that has been foisted upon us by the political class. Conclusion: I drive a truck because I can haul stuff with it and it can go most places without getting damaged. Plus, it is big so it is safer for me to drive.

    1. Foo says:

      After 150 years, then what? Oh wait, you’ll be dead and your selfishly don’t care. You got to drive your truck and that’s all that matters.

      1. ben says:

        Then by that time a more efficient and safer battery would be invented. This is clearly not the time to attack gasoline industry when the alternative is 100 times worse. There has been no real innovation for the past 50 years in the battery department. I’m talking about a real battery break through which, for example, coul power your smart phone for at least a week and enable your vehicle drive for at least 350 miles on one charge. Smart Phone manufacturers deal with the same battery issues every year. Processors are getting faster, which require more batter power, but batteries are not getting ifficient, and the cell phone manufacturers have to invent clever gimmicky hacks to make the battery last as long as possible to power their next gen gadgets.

        I am fine if we keep throwing money at the alternative solutions, but lets not attack the industry that keeps us running at the same time. You cannot legislate your way to success, which is what liberal agenda for the economy has been all along. The market takes time to adopt, develop, and produce alternatives that excite consumers to switch.

    2. muchski says:

      Yes because over 95% of scientists worldwide who agree that global warming is very real, will be devastating, and is caused by humans are just part of this grand hoax. Even the most pessimistic of sources, Shell Oil corp is estimating last gasoline car will be built in 70 years. New oil finds will become costlier and far riskier to pursue in the future. Even currently think how wasteful it is to have militaries fight for and then protect the drills thousands if not tens of thousands of miles away then transport it with oil tankers, trucks, rail where accidents happen along the way. It’s so idiotic, I mean how ridiculous is it that we have big semis hauling around oil while burning oil and then burning the oil in engines which only turn 20% of energy into actually spinning wheels.

    3. Jeff D says:

      “Environmentalism is no different than religion, there is no scientific basis for such a discipline.”
      Same with politics. Same for your reasoning for driving your truck. You are free to drive what you want. Not all people that are interested in electric vehicles are environmentalists. The reason you are being defensive is that you feel some people are attacking your “religion” and you naturally feel the need to attack back without any scientific basis.

  48. NV Rick says:

    I am far from being a tree hugging leftie. I have libertarian tendencies, but am neutral on many social issues.
    That being said, the Tesla S is a fascinating vehicle. I have just read some stories about Musk’s ideas for the future. The company is starting to develop quick swap battery stations which can change out a depleted battery in about 1.5 minutes. The company already has charging stations which take longer, but are free. As of now, there is not a nationwide deployment of the charging stations or battery swap stations, but if or when there is, I believe that EV’s could become a major part of personal transportation. The charging stations are being upgraded with solar panels on the roofs, which will reduce some of the cost to Tesla. When lower cost models are introduced and the number of charging stations become ubiquitous, I will certainly look into getting an EV.

  49. MTN Ranger says:

    Did I log on to the wrong website today? I don’t seem to recognize it.

    1. Jay Cole says:

      Being first out of the gate nationally on a fairly high profile event, this thread has some new faces/is uncommon for sure.

      I think you will find all the other stories (and conversations) to be quite regular, (=

      1. TomH says:

        It’s always interesting to come to InsideEVs to hear the fringe defend Tesla.

        Whether it’s this site’s defense of Tesla’s non-GAAP accounting or this site’s humorous “all cars catch on fire, there’s nothing to see here” attitude toward Tesla fires we can always count on a fringe, biased perspective from the people who run InsideEVs.

        Not only has Tesla’s credibility tanked ( ‘this is a highly improbable accident, no need to investigate’ ) so has InsideEVs credibility since they just blindly accepted the spin from Fremont.

        InsideEV would be better off if they opened their minds and were impartial rather than being spin Doctors for Tesla.

        1. lithium says:

          It’s an EV fan site. By definition the authors are partial to EVs. Given that, I’d say they are remarkably fair.

        2. Jeff D says:

          “It’s always interesting to come to InsideEVs to hear the fringe defend Tesla.”
          It’s also interesting to come to InsideEVs to see the other fringe show up and attack something that isn’t hurting them because they don’t understand it and jump to conclusions.

    2. sven says:

      I think some teaparty or conservative blogs/websites must have linked to this InsideEvs’ news story. That’s why there are all the anti-EV and anti-Tesla posts here today. InsideEvs was one of the first websites (if not the first website) to pic up on this this story.

      1. Billy says:

        Ya just don’t know what’s good for ya. Libs aren’t the only ones who feel they are the cats pajamas when it comes to….EVERYTHING.

        1. Anon says:

          How does that old song go?

          “Billy, don’t be a hero. Don’t be a fool with your life.”

          I think you’re right Sven. We’ve had trolls before, but nothing like this before! The FUD Factory is really in gear on this. It is interesting to note how many mentions of Obama, climate change, greenies, hippies, etc., are contained in these FUD exchanges.

          Political and social regressives like Billy fear change, and by coming here– they feel they can make the world better by proclaiming their conservative and unsustainable status quo, while forcing it upon others.

  50. Bud Karma says:

    As always the Tesla trolls come out in force whenever one of their babies catches on fire. You can have your Tesla, I want my family kept safe.

    1. Anon says:

      Then by all means, keep using gasoline powered vehicles that EXPLODE, and burn far more uncontrollably & more often; because what was good and familliar for Grandpa– must be automatically better than a BEV.

      Glad you’re responsible for making such safety decisions for your family, TeaTard. :p

  51. TomH says:

    How come no LEAFs or Volts have caught on fire yet 3 Tesla’s have caught on fire in only a 5 week period ?

    NHTSA will have no choice but to investigate.

    One has to wonder why NHTSA suddenly stopped their investigation after the first fire after only a couple days.

    NHTSA doesn’t look too good now that there have been 3 fires in 5 weeks.

    1. Grant Gerke says:

      The radicals shut down the Fed government back in Oct. so they could rake in cash for their campaigns and, in the process, NHTS couldn’t perform an investigation. Because the Govt was closed.

  52. battman says:

    We put 13 to 16 gallons of extremely flammable liquid in our cars all the time and think nothing of it. Last year alone >200,000 vehicle fires occurred in the US but does not get any press or little press. Batteries are energy storage devices and shorts and fires will occur.

  53. Billy says:

    I would like to know how all these “save the planet” cars are going to re-charged/stay charged using dice and slice wind turbines and solar panels? Fearless leader is doing away with the reliable already in place electrical generating plants. Because as we all know, America getting rid of our dirty coal plants will save the world!!!! Except India and China and other countries don’t give a crap!

    1. Foo says:

      Even if we powered the required electric generators using the same oil we now refine, transport, and pump into each *individual* gas-powered car today, overall it would be something like a 5x more efficient use of that fossil energy overall. We’d be able to travel the same distance for 1/5 the fuel cost, and probably more than 1/5 the pollution (since an oil-powered electric plant can be made much less polluting than all the individual cars).

      If you don’t like that argument, be aware that refining 1 gallon of gasoline requires about 7kW of electricity. The typical EV can travel at least 25 miles on 7kW, which is about the same distance the average gas car can travel on 1 gallon of gasoline. In other words, if we simply removed the need to refine all that gasoline, that ALONE would free up enough electrical capacity to power the equivalent EVs. Think of the additional energy that is *uttery wasted* in support of the world-wide industrial complex required to fuel of all of the gas-powered vehicles, when compared to world that could be driving EVs instead.

      This is all grade-school math. Is it making sense yet? This is why EVs are the future.

    2. Tesla Fan says:

      get back to the porch billy thats enough internet for today

  54. ben says:

    hmm. Why is the left quiet about this? Oh yeah, everyday and night we hear nothing but praises for Tesla. A gasoline powered car with this kind of record would be dragged through courts without even waiting for class action suite which would follow later.

    1. Anon says:

      Google gasoline car fires… Watch gasoline car fires on YouTube from all over the world, with every make and model of car. Watch how fast they burn. Watch how many people die in these incidents…

      Why is the Right so silent on this, Ben ??? ;)

  55. Bill Howland says:

    People are reluctant to criticize Musk since he’s the new Steve Jobs, but Musk criticizes other companies much too harshly that only have praise for him. I’m a Tesla owner but I don’t like what was done to Martin Eberhart and consider THAT man the father of my car.

    Not sure what you are referring to Billy and I dont know what age group youre in (8th grade I thought someone said), but you have a point..

    Closing of power plants nationwide one would think would eventually cause brownouts during August, even with the USA’s ongoing deindustrialization.

    Or perhaps you mean that there has been no warming for the past 15 years and that the Arctic Ice extent has grown 929,000 square miles in the past year alone, cutting off the ‘hoped for’ Northwest passage, such as there happened to be 100 years ago for the explorer Amundsen (1903-1906). If so, its good that you can see through things, challenge what you are taught, and this way, incidentally, you really LEARN the material.

    Back to this Blog: The mexican fire is the only one that really scares me. There was a HUGE flash and a very loud bang. What was happening in the passenger compartment at this time, and was this the biggest explosion or was there an even bigger one?

  56. TomH says:

    MORE BAD NEWS FOR TESLA

    “Safety advocates want probe of third fire in Tesla Model S”

    Numerous auto safety groups are demanding NHTSA investigate the Model S, including the notable Clarence Ditlow from the Center for auto Safety?

    “Three fires is a big number out of 19,000” Model S cars on the roads, Ditlow said. “They have to open an investigation. I would fall out of my chair if they didn’t.”

    Safety groups are saying the battery location makes the car more susceptible to fires. Ya think?

    Safety advocates have rightfully noted that there have been zero fires like this in other EVs.

    1. Anon says:

      I can see bullet proof vest technology being used to help mitigate the issue, but nothing is going to ever be 100% impossible to penetrate at highway speeds. Physics is physics. We’ve all accepted the fires / explosions / deaths from more than a century of gasoline vehicles– I think we’ll all get used to BEVs, too. :)

    2. Jeff D says:

      For being a safety advocate, doesn’t he realize the dangers of falling out of chairs?
      Just kidding, but it will be good to look at things and make them better.

  57. Dr. Biggs says:

    Thermal runaway can cause batteries to burn at 1100 degrees F. Also people miss the fact that in the transmission of electricity across power lines, you lose electricity to the friction caused by the wires. Annually, 7% of generated electicity is lost on the wires.
    The daily finance website compared the cost of gasoline to hybrid cars and found that a Ford Focus with initial costs, nearly $5,000 engine costs and 8 years of gasoline ends up costing hte consumer $45,616. In contrast the Focus hybrid ends up costing $58,562. The key difference excluding the 8 yr cost difference is that the cost of engine repairs for the gasoline car does not hit you all at once. However the electic car requires the batteries to be replaced at a whopping cost of $13,500. Considering that most people finance a new car at 5 to 6 yrs, who has 13K stashed away to replace the batteries on a car they are still paying monthly notes on? If you feel good about driving an electric car, then good for you. Just remember to get out of the fast lane, when my turbo deisel is on your butt.

    1. Anon says:

      Where did you get you degree, Dr. Biggs? I think they want it back. ;D

    2. Bill Howland says:

      Well, point taken Dr. Biggs that Electric Cars might not be the “Economic Choice” at the moment, but then some of us early adopters have to bite the bullet and pay somewhat more for our EV’s to get the ball rolling….And yes, Losses from electric transmission are usually at least 7%, and there are also plenty of additional losses besides voltage drop. But the system for over 100 years has proven to work pretty well. What I don’t like is the arbitrarily high prices some of us pay for electricity. Ideally, it should really be about half of what I currently pay and about 1/4 of what some Californians pay.

      But in most locales, store bought electricity is cheap enough to make EV’s worthwhile. In my own house, the 2 EV’s I have are the major consumer of Electricity. Other than a small seldom used central air conditioner, everything else is natural gas, such as furnace, water heater, wall oven, cooktop, clothes dryer, fire place, family room heater, and my biggest consumer, the gas fired hot tub.

      But this all leaves plenty of electricity on my smallish 100 amp service (small for the size of the house and the amount of equipment I have in it) to easily charge up 2 electric cars plus have something left over for the hot tub pumps.

      Then, there are plenty of non-tangibles that EV’s have going for them. Being able to refuel at your house instead of somewhat inconvenient gas stations (and always at the wrong time when you’re in a hurry), and also the silky smooth EV ride (again granted, my roadster can’t be described as silky smooth, but it has its own kind of fun driving experience).

      I’m sure your Turbo Diesel is a fine product, but I happen to prefer my 2 EV’s.

    3. Nate says:

      I owned a TDI wagon before, it was a fun car and great for road trips. I sold it before it was out of warranty, as there were too many cases of fuel system and engine repairs I didn’t want to worry about.

      Our Volt, in comparison, is a model that has logged over 300 million electric miles. It has been very reliable and has earned multiple awards for having the highest ownership satisfaction. People have driven past their 100k warranty, and battery failure has not been an issue. The same BS scare tactics were said about the Prius a decade ago. Now you see them logging serious mileage as taxi cabs. If battery failure is a serious holdup for you, I would suggest leasing. That may not be a bad idea even if you want to go for another turbo diesel — technology is improving so much right now you may not be so gung ho on oil 5 years from now.

      Also, I hope the turbo diesel you tailgate with isn’t a recent VW TDI. They have pretty low ground clearance especially when it comes to that oil pan. You may want to leave some better stopping distance. Best of luck to you.

  58. Trace says:

    Wow. Who let the trolls in? Teabaggers must’ve gotten misdirected from World Nut Daily. It’s like a Lipton factory in here.

  59. Gwido says:

    It seems to me that some Tesla owners could improve their driving skills…

  60. Josh Bryant says:

    I have resisted the temptation to post until now. Just to help put things into perspective, ICE car fires are common and dangerous. ICEs are much more likely to “spontaneously combust”, not just catch fire in an serious accident (Yes, running over large metal objects at highway speeds is a serious accident in any vehicle.) It happened to my parents ’94 Dodge Dakota pickup at an age of only 2 years old, idling at the stoplight. Luckily nobody was hurt.

    Here are some links that took me all of 5 minutes to find:

    https://twitter.com/BMW_Fire

    http://www.consumeraffairs.com/automotive/f150_fires.htm

    http://www.examiner.com/article/mercedes-benz-catches-on-fire-and-explodes

    http://www.consumeraffairs.com/automotive/chrysler_fires.html

    You get the theme. Go search for your own make and model + car fire and you unfortunately may get some bad news of rare occurrences. Ones that do not involve and accident are the most concerning to me.

  61. Eco_Turbo says:

    I don’t remember a gas car ever telling the occupants to exit.