It's hard to believe that there's a Tesla Model S out there with nearly 1.2 million miles on its odometer, but indeed there is. And here it is.
The car, a 2014 Model S P85, has racked up 1.18 million miles so far, which works out to approximately 131,000 miles per year. Could you imagine driving that much? And doing so in an electric car, which naysayers often state can't go the distance. Well, we think this car proves that EVs can be driven a significant amount of miles per year and that the charging infrastructure, at least in some parts of the world, can support high-mileage drives.
Back in 2019, Elon Musk congratulated Hansjörg von Gemmingen-Hornberg, the owner of this particular Model S, which at the time had one million kilometers (621,371 miles) on its odometer. That seemed like a solid accomplishment but flash forward to today and the mileage has basically doubled.
The video embedded above is one of the first to feature Hansjörg von Gemmingen-Hornberg. Up until now, much of the info about Gemmingen-Hornberg's Model S was limited to tweets. As Watt Energy, the uploader of the video explains:
His car has 1.9 million km / or 1.18 million miles on the odometer at the time of filming and Hansjorg aims for more. There is little precise information about him online, mostly based on some older tweets or on assumptions of how he manages to put so many miles on his car. I went to Germany to meet Hansjörg directly and to find out the complete story firsthand from him!
A Roadster Went The Distance Too
There's a lot more to the story though. Gemmingen-Hornberg previously owned a Tesla Roadster. He managed to somehow rack up 400,000 miles on it, despite the lacking infrastructure at the time. He decided to buy the Model S shortly after it came out because it was roomier and more comfortable. However, he didn't buy a new Model S, but rather a used 2014 one with 18,641 miles on it.
Motor And Battery Replacements
Some early Tesla Model S EVs were known to have issues with their rear motors. This particular Tesla suffered from this. The rear motor was replaced thirteen times, so if we include the original that it came with, that's fourteen motors over the course of about 1.2 million miles.
Most of the replacement motors were actually refurbished units and the problem there is that Tesla didn't know the real issue so it didn't know how to properly fix the motors. Some of these replacement motors failed very quickly. Some were covered under warranty, while others were not.
In regards to the vehicle's battery pack, it fared better than the motor. However, this Model S is currently on its fourth battery pack. Four batteries at 1.2 million miles mean that the average pack lasted some 300,000 and counting, which is actually a strong showing in our opinion.
How Has The Tesla Model S Lasted This Long?
Gemmingen-Hornberg notes that he does take it easy in his Model S. He does not drive the car for long distances without giving it and himself a break. He says he only covers about 62 miles at a time before pausing for a while.
In regard to depleting and charging the battery, the Model S owner says he aims to recharge it when it drops down to 20 percent. He doesn't fully deplete the battery and also doesn't top it off.
The other aspects of the car, like the exterior and interior, have held up well. Unfortunately, he doesn't go into detail about other wear items like brakes, tires, and so on.
How In The Heck Does He Drive It So Much?
For starters, the owner is retired. He also likes to see the world by car. The Model S has been driven to Africa, Morocco, Sweden, Austria, and China. It seems that's only the beginning though. The Model S owner wants to continue driving the car and actually let go of his Lucid Air reservation so that the Model S can rack up even more miles.
Do you have a high-mileage EV? If so, tell us a bit of your story in comments.