All Wheel Drive Tesla Model S Expected to Launch in Early 2014

AUG 6 2013 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 21

Soon an AWD Version Will JOin This Lineup

Soon an AWD Version of the Model S Will Join This Lineup

Tesla Motors is reportedly prepping an all-wheel-drive version of the Model S and it’s slated for launch “as soon as early 2014,” according to The Verge.

The AWD Model S is expected to be available only with the 85-kWh battery pack (at least initially) and will become the top-of-the-line version.  It’ll likely match or beat the performance of the current P85 Model S and we fully expect it to be the most powerful Tesla sedan available.  Range may drop slightly, as the AWD setup will surely add some pounds to the Model S.

Expect More Oomph in AWD

Expect More Oomph in AWD

The Verge cites “sources familiar with the situation” for this information, but it’s long been expected that an AWD Model S was the logical next step.

The upcoming Model X will feature AWD, so we know Tesla is already working on such a system.

An AWD Model S would likely appeal to those who reside in areas with harsh winter weather.  We could see it catching on immediately at the various ski resort cities throughout the US.

But AWD is not only for harsh conditions.  By sending power to all four wheels, the Model S could indeed cope with a BIG bump in horsepower and torque.  That’s why the AWD version will almost certainly be the quickest Model S to date.

Though The Verge is supremely confident in its “sources,” Tesla Motors wouldn’t comment on future products.  But that’s to be expected.

Source: The Verge

Categories: Tesla

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21 Comments on "All Wheel Drive Tesla Model S Expected to Launch in Early 2014"

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Since I typically hate rear-wheel drive cars, I wonder if they’ll provide an option to drive on front wheels only, even if it means reduced power. That would probably be how I’d prefer to handle my regular commuting. Then turn on the rear wheels when I want extra power.

While viewing videos of them giving test rides in the Model X, the driver mentioned that they can gear the front and rear differently so they can be used at different ratio depending on the need (accel, highway driving, city driving, etc).

eh David, what’s the difference at low power?

Does this mean the frunk will disappear?

You can certainly have more overall motor output with two units. But you can only draw so much from the battery pack. Remember for an 85kWh battery pack…drawing 320kW at full throttle is already quite a bit in the current model S.

You’re right that there’s only so much voltage you can get out of the pack, but there’s also the gearing and the perf curve of their motor. Instead of spreading out one motor to be optimized from 0-100, they can give one motor even more incredible 0mph torque, and let the other specialize in highway maneuvering power.

This is why/how dual motors were an absolute must for the X to match the performance of the lighter, single motor S. Now they figure they can use some of their knowledge in preparing for X by giving the S a jolt. Sure, they won’t be able to claim X matches the S in perf, but they will be able to…just in comparison to the the *original* top of the line S.

because you can send the same power to all wheels at once.
Too much power to the wheel would cause lost of road contact.
That extra power beyond the friction limit of those tires would be usable on the other wheels.

Distribute the power to all wheels and you can stay further below the tire limit for the same power.

No. Most of the frunk remains. You just lose that inset “microwave” section.

No – if you look inside the frunk, you will see that there is a substantial rectangular cavity that extends back towards the dashboard. Based on the picture of the Model X AWD chassis on the website, it is a foregone conclusion that the front electric motor will take up most of that cavity while leaving the main volume of the frunk untouched.

frunk will stay forever

I will be looking forward to this day. I have a feeling there will be many Model S Performance RWD hitting the used market after this becomes available.

That is very likely. You won’t get the $7,500 Federal Tax Credit, but I’m sure the prices on the used versions will be discounted more than the tax credit (hopefully – depends on demand).

You will also see a few dropped reservations for the Model X. There are some people, not a lot, who wanted AWD so badly that they passed up the Model S and reserved a Model X instead. With this long-anticipated development, those people will switch back, I’m sure.

I think this questions was asked on a few videos to Elon and his answer were pretty clear this was not happening soon. I would think/hope/wish they would focus on the Model X. Perhaps with more wintery areas or countries, this priority was raised.

They have to develop the exact same hardware and software for Model X, so there is no engineering time wasted in this effort. Everyone’s expectation is the AWD on Model X will come after Model X, but Elon likes to have surprises.

I could see Tesla sneaking it out just ahead of Model X as a super performance version (0 – 60 in 3.5). It would also give them the experience manufacturing it at lower production levels, before the Model X ramp-up.

I’d be all for them working out the bugs in case I switch to the Sig version of the Model X. I like the enhancements to the Model S as well that are on going (and in other countries) because I would expect them to be available on the first Model X’s.

Excellent! Keep the good news coming Tesla!

My guess… AWD performance comes with sub 4 second 0-60mph and 110kWh battery to be shared in Model X.

It needs a bigger battery for the extra power.

The 85kWh pack will be enough, but the EPA range will be a little lower than the RWD. I’d expect the 265 miles to drop to 250 to 255. It’s more weight and more energy…although it’s also more regen, the proportions are still the same. There will inherently be a net loss in efficiency over the RWD version.

I’m sure it will be under 4.0 seconds for 0-60 times, and the handling will be spectacular.

If it has a “Three Mode” FWD, RWD & AWD, it will be rather popular.

How about a sub-4-second pickup truck?