First Tesla Model X Caught Testing In Camo – Video/Image

JAN 30 2015 BY JAY COLE 58

Been waiting for that photographic proof the Tesla Model X is on its way and will finally be arriving this summer?

A video and a picture of the upcoming Tesla Model X out testing have finally surfaced, and it is no slouch on the open track either!

Instagram user Brandon Kiehne posted this image of a camouflage Tesla being loaded up at the Alameda air field this week, and while the user describes this as potentially being the Model 3…it’s clearly the Model X given the lines of the vehicle that we are already very familiar with on the prototype.  (and the fact the Model 3 still exists only on paper)

“I believe this is the first photo of the #Tesla #model3. The only other photos are from that Telsa claims are complete speculations. I saw this one being pulled into the trailer at #AlamedaNAS at an entrance to the closed airfield. The truck pulling it was a Tesla vehicle. After it was closed up I asked if I could be nosey hoping to find out what the car was but I got a quick “not on this one.” As if this is far different from normal for them…”

But wait, that is not all that has popped up, here is some video (below) from of the Beta Model X testing from afar on Wednesday:

Earlier Pre-Production Design Of Tesla Model X

Earlier Pre-Production Design Of Tesla Model X

Tesla Model X In Camo via Instagram - Brandon Kiene

Tesla Model X In Camo via Instagram – Brandon Kiene

Things we note from the camo’d Tesla Model X:

  • side mirrors are back
  • unique door handle design has been retained
  • significant changes to the rear section
  • higher suspension

Anything else catch your eye?

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58 Comments on "First Tesla Model X Caught Testing In Camo – Video/Image"

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Wow… Fairly radical profile changes! The back looks totally different (more rear headroom, cargo space?), and is distinctively different than the Model S.

Should not be as confusing as it was earlier, to tell them apart.

i rather like the design of the Model X.

I found a video with the original model x at CES 2015. And you can watch the unveiling again if you like to compare with this one.

I did not think more cargo space was possible. But Tesla may have pulled it off.

I am not seeing much of a change in the back, really. I think it may be the camo that is throwing off the lines of the rear windows?

Really? Looks less rounded and bigger to me. This will probably get them more room back there but the aerodynamics probably won’t be as good.

Well, a Toyota Prius is not rounder than this camo prototype and yet, achieves a rather good Cx.

Actually, this Model X looks like a lifted Prius V to me. Kudos to Tesla if they can make the production version of the Model X as sleek as the Model S. But it ain’t easy when you go big…

I see a slightly raised back end. But only slightly. And I fully admit my eyesight is horrible. Someone correct me if I’m wrong.

Title says Model X. Instagram says model 3. What is it supposed to be?

Read the article and draw your own conclusions. Think it’s rather obvious.

It is the Model X, 100%. Not everyone is fully familiar with the Tesla family lineup as the folks around here. I think we pointed out the photographer’s mistake pretty clearly, but here is the quote again:

“Instagram user Brandon Kiehne posted this image of a camouflage Tesla being loaded up at the Alameda air field this week, and while the user describes this as potentially being the Model 3…it’s clearly the Model X given the lines of the vehicle that we are already very familiar with on the prototype. (and the fact the Model 3 still exists only on paper)”

Yep. Sorry about not reading the article fully first.


clearly the X

the guy is a noob

Maybe its both…

Introducing the Model XXX ! 😉

Side mirrors are a bit of a bummer. I know american regulations. Jay, do you know whether those same regulations apply in Europe?

Regulations for Side Mirrors are more strict in USA, than in Europe. So it should be possible too introduce such a system in europe. But i doubt they build a extra camera/mirror system for europe…

It would be a good way to show that it gets more range and a way to push regulations in the US toward accepting rear “mirror” cameras.

So it might happen.

I keep seeing people here ragging on side-view mirrors. Why?

Yes, I realize they add drag.
However, they are extremely important for road safety, and the common type of side mirrors have a lot less failure modes than any camera solution could have.

Read up on the VW XL1, and the problem with making it street-legal in the USA requiring side mirrors, even though the prototypes use video cameras in place of side mirrors. Apparently side mirrors add a -lot- of drag, especially when you’re trying to be ultra-efficient.

I agree with your point about mirrors being safer and not having the failure modes of video cameras and displays, but that’s an entirely separate issue from streamlining and energy efficiency.

This looks like something between a Volt and a BMW X4 to me. Look how high those rear windows are. Everything else looks good.

It’s good they improved the rear space compared to first versions!

Space is the final frontier, for cars with batteries.

Where other manufacturers don’t give an inch (.6″ Volt… C’mon GM), Tesla is the ONLY GAME IN TOWN.

Now who was it ripping on other plug-ins spotted in camo, saying “Tesla doesn’t need to do this crap”. LOL

I agree that Tesla doesn’t -need- to do the same kind of nonsense. Really, why would the average person care so deeply about what the styling lines of a new car will be? I can understand why rival car companies would want to know as soon as possible what their competition will be offering, but why car review mags would offer so much money for “spy photos” that it inspires paparazzi-like stalking… I really don’t get it. Do people really get a thrill out of looking at a fuzzy photo of just -part- of a camouflaged car? Not being snarky here. I’d like someone to explain why anyone wouldn’t rather just wait for “official” photos that actually show the complete car in full detail. And the recent tease with GM showing just part of the nose of the Volt 2.0 seem to be part of the same nonsense. Seems to be the car companies are practicing reverse psychology, actually -intending- to generate interest about their new car by just doing a “fan dance” kind of thing… pretending to reveal while mostly hiding what you’re trying to see. So no, I don’t think Tesla needs to pull this kind of B.S.… Read more »

Hmmm. If there have been significant bodystyle changes, this could explain why they haven’t bothered showing off the model-X prototype much. And if the pre-production models looked exactly like the prototype, there’d be no need to camouflage them.

I don’t care for the new design at all. At least in camo form it looks like a cross between a Prius and a Pontiac Aztec.

Aztec was my first thought too. Hopefully once it’s out of the camo it’ll be better.

I was thinking a supersized Prius too (but didn’t want type it). Doh!

+1 And the only thing I think explaining it is a goal for more aero.


A pregnant Prius…

There is quite a bit of body padding on that car. No way Tesla would release a car that looks that bad.

I had the same thought. The shape is definitely similar to the Prius V. Probably there are aerodynamic reasons for that, and I’m sure Tesla will make it look nicer than Toyota can.

OMG . . . if it gets tagged with the Aztec label, they are gonna get a lot of abuse. And there is a little bit of resemblance.

A bit off topic, but I really wonder what the model E/3 will look like. The one thing nobody has really considered is how the reduced size of the motor ( the motor in the model S is about the size of a watermelon and sits in line with the axle), and lack of a gear box completely changes the design restrictions/parameters of a car.

If you give a really creative person a blank sheet of paper and tell them the only thing they need to design for is 5 seats, and rear view mirrors ;-), what do you get?

7 full adult seats for the Model X.

What will the Model ≡ look like?

Well, I remember at least one comment from a Tesla spokesman that said they didn’t want to go very far away from “traditional” auto styling with the Model S, but that the Model ≡ would have a more radical design. So, just guessing here, maybe it will look more like the BMW i3. Or — here’s hoping — maybe it will look even more radically different from today’s gas guzzlers.

Frankly, until I saw the Model S, I didn’t think it was -possible- to make a “designed in a wind tunnel” car which didn’t have close to the same body lines as the Prius. Thankfully, Tesla has proven that they’re just as capable with streamlining and styling as they are with building an electric drivetrain.

Personally, I’d love to see plug-in EVs look as different from gas guzzlers as the Model T Ford looks different from a horse-and-buggy. So here’s hoping we’ll see a truly radical style for the Model ≡!

Who has the time to hang out at the shipyard on the off chance that something interesting might be driving around?

Supposedly the guy was at a skate park that was close to it and saw the camo which gives away something is being tested.

Very good. “Chance favors the prepared mind” -Louis Pasteur

I wish they could price it 10k less than the S…

And I wish the Model S was 20 cm less wide, a bit shorter and $35k less expensive.

It’s good to see some testing and prototypes on the roads. Then there is still hope that they might start deliveries in Q3.

The updated version looks just like the Honda CR-V. Except bigger.

Honda CRV is way boxier/taller in the rear.

So’s Kim.

It’s Friday.

Best line of the week, PJ

Can’t wait to see them hit the streets… Finally a truly roomy, useful vehicle that is full electric. Skip the Model 3 and go for the truck next… watch sales go through the roof.

I am thinking you are going to be walking this story back…

That AWD tire squeal… Is traction control turned off???

humbly offer, even with severe camo, that wheelbase is too short to be an MX.

Wheelbase is the same as Model S. They share a platform.

As I recall, it has recently been reported that the Model X wheelbase will be about 2 inches longer than the “S”. I find that rather surprising, if true, because it has been frequently reported elsewhere that — as you say, Hardcore — the “X” will be built on the same platform as the “S”.

I -was- wondering how they could shoehorn an SUV (or more accurately, CUV) body onto the platform of a sedan… but then, the “S” is a pretty roomy sedan, so maybe they could have pulled it off without extending the wheelbase at all.

I think you missed my point, hardcore – I believe that the wheelbase of the vehicle shown to be smaller than the MS -or- the MX that we have seen.. I doubt that this is actually an X.

The distance from the axle to the back of the camo car is a foot shorter than the same distance on the Model X. The camo tire diameter is equal to the axle to back edge distance. A Model X axle to back edge is a foot longer than its tire diameter. This is not a MX. Too short.

The height of the camo car is two tire diameters off the ground at the rear axle. A MX is much taller than two tire diameters at the rear axle.

The “falcon wing” door in this photo looks crooked, and there is a huge bump on the roof edge of the door. What gives? Aggressive camo?

It’s the new Tesla Aztec.