Tesla Lends Gadget Man Model S 100D For 4-Day, 1,200-Mile Journey To Prove A Point

2 months ago by Mark Kane 9

Tesla Model S

Ipswich based Matt Porter, who has been testing and reviewing ‘gadgets’ for the last 3 years – under the moniker of ‘The Gadget Man’, has announced that in October he will prove electric cars capability for long range journeys.

Tesla Model S 100D

The goal is to drive 1,200 miles (more than 1,900 km) through the UK, coast to coast and back, in four days. Matt will take on the journey with his 75 year old father, Ken Porter.

The route is from Ness Point in East Anglia (the most easterly point in the UK) to Ardnamurchan Lighthouse in Scotland (the most westerly point in mainland UK).

And the car for this task to be longest range Tesla, the Model S 100D.

Completing the 1,200 miles round trip journey is to be Matt’s answer for the doubters. To spread the word, the journey will be documented using live streaming and aerial shots.

Matt Porter said:

“By far the most common questions I receive about electric cars is ‘what is it’s range?’ and ‘How long does it take to charge?’. Tesla have very kindly provided a Model S 100D for our challenge, a car with a range of more than 300 miles between charges and recharge times as fast at 30 minutes. We are very confident we can achieve our challenge using their network of charging points along the way. We’re both super excited to be attempting this challenge together and looking forward to the some “Father-Son Time’ and amazing scenery during our journey. We’re also hoping to exchange gifts across the country too”

Dates / Times (approximate)

● (Fri 6/10) Depart Ness Point , Grantham, Ullswater
● (Sat 7/10 Depart Ullswater, Gretna Green, Glencoe and Ardnamurchan
● (Sun 8/10) Depart Ardnamurchan, Kilchoan, Glencoe, Abington,Ullswater
● (Mon 9/10) Depart Ullswater, Grantham, Ness Point

More details here.

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9 responses to "Tesla Lends Gadget Man Model S 100D For 4-Day, 1,200-Mile Journey To Prove A Point"

  1. Brian Lawrence says:

    I already did 1277 miles in March this year in my Hyundai Ioniq EV.On a trip from Scotland To Norfolk and Suffolk (3 days there) then back to Scotland.

  2. Wayne says:

    What’s the point? Longer distances proven already many times over.

  3. Carl says:

    Didn’t some guy already drive his Tesla P85D all the way across the USA last year??…a distance of some 3,000ml!!!!

    1. James Cooke says:

      I did 2,000 miles to and from Northern Italy from Essex a few weeks ago. I’m pretty sure this is a misuse of the word challenge.

  4. Matt Porter says:

    The key part of the challenge is the remote areas of Scotland. It’s also to show to cynics and people who don’t believe EV’s are the future, than this kind of journey is both possible and more importantly practical.

  5. TimE says:

    4 days to cover 1200 miles in an EV rated to go 335 miles on a charge. Oooh, that sounds like a real nail biter. /sarc

    They should be able to easily do that just with destination charging and no use of SuperChargers.

    With a Tesla Model S 100D and making use of SuperChargers, with two people they should be able to cover that distance easily in under 2 days, and if doing nothing but driving and supercharging, as quickly as 24 hours (5 hours driving @ avg 60 MPH + 45 minutes charging is under 6 hours per 300 miles).

    1. Matt Porter says:

      OK, I understand your calculations. However, the fastest route from Ness Point to Ardnamurchan takes 12hr 35mins mins. In fact the last 76 miles takes 2hr 39mins. It’s easy to oversimplify the journey times or in fact that the last 60 miles in on a single track unlit road.

      However, I’m not doing it to break some kind of human endurance test, I’m doing it to show the unconverted that electric is in fact a serious alternative to ICE. Most people base their assumptions on a diesel/petrol car that takes 5 minutes to fill up at a filling station.

      I appreciate your comments and hope you will follow our journey and enjoy the photos and videos of the trip.

  6. Matt Porter says:

    It wasn’t as easy as it seemed.

    In the first instance, the car decided we didn’t have enough juice to make it to Grantham, so we ended up having to divert to Thetford. Once on the A1 we hit a massive amount stationary traffic around Sheffield and had to divert around that too. This took us way off route and mean’t that we would have struggled to get to Gretna Green after staying overnight at Ullswater. Fortunately, (Tebay) Penrith Supercharger had opened up the week before, so we were able to Supercharge there. By the time we had reached Ullswater, we had driven 420 miles which on paper should mean 1 stop, but in fact we had just above half charge when we left Ness Point, on top of that, unless you put the car on cruise control at 65mph, you don’t achieve anywhere near 300 miles per charge. After stopping at Gretna Green, we decided not to stop at Abington (we should have done), but go on to Glencoe Ski Centre which had a Chademo charger. Upon arrival the charger was asking for a RFID card, which we didn’t have (Tesla hadn’t tracked down the cards for Scotland). Someone had removed the Unit ID number and telephone contact details for the machine. No one in the Ski Centre had any idea who to contact and actually weren’t sure what the machine was for. After searching Zap-Map, we finally got hold of Charge Scotland and they remotely enabled the charger and gave us instructions for how to enable others we planned to use. Superchargers work at about 370mph. this one barely made 110mph, however we only needed enough charge to make it to Kilchoan, which was near our destination as there was a Chademo there too and could be used overnight. We charged for an hour to ensure we had plenty of juice, because the car reduces power at around 70miles of range. We were very lucky that the Corran Ferry was waiting to leave as we arrived as it was starting to get late in the day. After the seemingly 30 seconds ferry ride, we arrived on the Ardnamurchan Peninsula and after a few miles the road became single track, winding and undulating. It was a lovely (25mph) drive, but as we transversed the mountain roads it got dark. We arrived at our B&B at 8pm. The Charge Scotland chargers only allow 1 hour charges, so you have to come back and restart every hour, as we were looking at 2 or three charges. I decided to get up early in the morning and take the car down to the pier to charge. I was able to remotely enable the chademo via the app and off the charging went.. for 7 minutes, at this point an error message came up on the charger and it stopped. I then cancelled everything and unplugged, I then decided to enable the alternative 43kw charger using the app, this worked and it started charging, but only at about 50mph!! I left it charging and went to get breakfast. When I returned, there was enough charge to get us to Ardnamurchan Lighthouse for a photo call and then back Ardnamurchan Distillery to swap gifts from Suffolk. The distillery has a Tesla Destination Charger (22kw), I plugged in while we were given a tour of the place and had a photo call. When it was time to leave, the charger had put a paltry amount of charge on the battery, but again, we had the chademo at Glencoe to fall back on. We gave the car a healthy boost at Glencoe and then drove on the Abington Supercharger. Here we had breakfast and edited some video and when we returned, there was 300 miles on the battery. I then put the car on cruise control at 70mph and we gently worked out way back to Ullswater. The next morning, I took a chap for a demonstration around Ullswater and we set off again. We stopped at Tebay again and then again at Sheffield and spoke to a number of Tesla drivers including a cabbie, charged up again to 300 miles and made our way back. We didn’t charge again, the car was in cruise control and much more economical, we arrived back at Ness Point again at 7pm. I then had to take in back to Ipswich where I plugged it in overnight (5mph), because I was attended a funeral the next day in Hitchin (85 mlles), in the morning there wasn’t enough to get me to Hitchin and back again, so I diverted for the THIRD time to Thetford and recharged again. This was the last charge as the battery lasted for my return journey and to work the next day where Tesla collected it.

    The actual point of the roadtrip was to prove to the unbelievers that EV’s are practical even in the most remote areas. They are, but they are reliant on a charge network. The Supercharger network is superb, there are always at least 8 stalls to choose from and they just work. The rapid chargers were either no labelled or developed faults. On top of this you have to plan way ahead. It’s ok saying ‘we have enough to get somewhere’, but you need enough to get back and enough to get you to the next charge point after you come back. I don’t have a home charging setup, it I did, I would have had more starting range on the car and it would have made live much easier at the start and when I needed to go to the funeral. However, Teslas are high performance and when you drive them harder (and it isn’t difficult), they burn through much more energy at an alarming rate.

    In retrospect, I didn’t have autopilot as press cars have this disabled, this would have made the journeys much easier because of the adaptive speed control etc which I didn’t have.

    It wasn’t easy, it was stressful and worrying for me and for my loved ones who were tracking my progress. However, once the learning curve had been overcome, it was amazing and Scotland has the most spectacular views.

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