Tesla Model S Safety First Video


Wrecked Model S

Wrecked Model S

This Tesla “Customer Stories” video is perhaps the best one released thus far.

Focused on the safety of the Tesla Model S (the world’s safest car), this video tells the story of Jim Hartman and his life-changing event.

Video description:

“For Jim Hartman, a career as a professional driving instructor meant he used to make his car buying decisions on the basis of attributes like performance, handling and design. See how his priorities shifted after a life-changing journey, and how he now only has eyes for the safest car on the road.”

Personally, I’ve long believed that safety should be the first priority in car selection, and now Hartman believes so too.

Categories: Crashed EVs, Tesla, Videos

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30 Comments on "Tesla Model S Safety First Video"

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Under Euro ncap tests many cars had much better crash test results including small city car Honda jazz .I wonder what are the main differences between the two test protocols. So world’s safest car … maybe in some of our north american fellows usual perception of what the world is.

US NCAP tests focuses on pasive safety features (ie: what happens when you do have an accident), while EU NCAP focuses on active safety (ie: features designed to avoid accidents).

Model S is crazy good on pasive features (very good anticrumpling zones, strong vertical and horizontal pillars, etc), but it was not that good on active features when the EU NCAP test was performed. Now, it has improved tenfold with all the autopilot and related features.

I understand this might well be the case but how come then that in passive safety test the Honda Jazz (Fit in the US ?) made much better results than the Model S under the Euro ncap tests (93% adult protection, 85% children protection against 82% and 77% for the Model S).

Tesla Model S has received a maximum-possible 5-star safety rating from the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP).

Model S is one of just a few cars to have ever achieved a 5-star safety rating from both Euro NCAP and the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Additionally, Model S is the only car this year to have achieved both a 5-star Euro NCAP rating and 5 stars in every NHTSA subcategory, including frontal impact, side impact, and rollover. Only two other cars have earned the same recognition since 2011 (when NHTSA introduced its latest rating scheme).

OK, we then all agree it is a safe car. Less safe than an $16K Honda Fit according to Euroncap crash test, but still a very safe car.

…and, I don’t want to be a pain within that nice Tesla party here but it appears cheap Nissan Leaf also had better crash test results than the Model S under Euro ncap test (respectively 89% adult protection and 83% children protection). See link below.


The Leaf failed to even get a 5 star rating in frontal crash, side crash and rollover in NHTSA crash tests.

Meanwhile the Tesla got the highest crash test scores i the history of the NHTSA and also got the top rating from the NCAP.

The Tesla also has the best real world safety record of any car in the the world.

Anyone that can read can see that the Tesla is the vastly safer car.

Try and catch up.

You are new to this… Safety ratings cannot be compared across vehicle classes. They are not comparable. Both EuroNCAP and NHTSA do this otherwise small vehicles would all have much lower safety ratings.

I am indeed new to this and I now do better understand the importance of classes. Thanks.

A Honda fit and a tesla model S get involved in a head on collision. Which car would you rather be in?

You know PVH, your desperate and pathetic attempts to slime Tesla in all the threads are really adding nothing to the conversations.

Tesla is universally recognized as the safest passenger car ever made with only 3 deaths, one of which was suicide by driving over a sea-cliff and one of which was a thief who drove 100mph into a telephone pole without his seatbelt. The last death was an owner who collided with a DUMPTRUCK!

Ob1 said:

“A Honda fit and a tesla model S get involved in a head on collision. Which car would you rather be in?”

I’d rather be in a tank, thanks.

And that’s the “logical” conclusion to this wrong-headed “arms race” idea that a heavier car is “safer” just because it’s heavier. Well, it may be safer for the occupants… but only at the expense of making the roads far less safe for everyone else!

Pretty self-centered thinking.

Now, that’s not intended as a slam at Tesla Motors. The Model S is a big heavy car because, with long-range EVs needing a big heavy battery pack, that’s the only sort of car Tesla could make money selling.

Kudos to Tesla for pursuing smaller cars like the Model ≡, which it hopes to sell in greater numbers.

What part of “5 star in both NCAP & NHTSA” are you failing to read? Bring up all the other car that earned 5stars in NCAP all you like, but the list of cars with 5star in both tests is really, really short.
Yet somehow you keep missing this fact

Facts typically have nothing to do with hate…

Could it be that, as with many other tests, data and ratings are only comparable between cars in the same class 😉

Euro NCAP (at least the frontal tests) compare the crash severity impact when the tested car is crashed with similar sized car. So you cannot (or rather should not) cross compare a large sedan and a small compact car’s ratings.

In a crash involving two differently sized cars, the momentum forces and effects always give advantage to heavier vehicle (notice not necessarily bigger, just heavier; but bigger is also an advantage but for different reasons). To put it another way, in 100 of 100 crashes, I would chose to be inside a large sedan such as Tesla’s Model S than in a Honda Fit ;-).

You can’t compare between classes because the scores are relative to each other inside the same class.

One cannot compare crash test results across vehicle classes.

“Star ratings cannot be compared directly between different categories of vehicles”


There was a problem with the calibration of the passenger airbag in the Model S which was corrected, but the test results still reflect the bottoming out of that airbag. I do disagree with the side pole impact results. The g-forces are higher with the Model S due to less cabin intrusion so they penalized the Model S, but the trade-off I think is worth it as there is very little cabin in intrusion which would protect you more in a higher speed crash. In other words, in lower speed crashes you might break some ribs easier in a Model S, but you might be able to walk away from accidents at a much higher speed. Take a look at the pole intrusion level of the XC90 or other higher rated severe pole tests and notice the amount of intrusion into the cabin. At some point, that’s fatal just because of the lack of space.

What we don’t get to see is the raw force measurements – manufacturers get to see that.

There are a few reasons why the Model S received a lower score in the NCAP which are covered in the NCAP.

1) When Tesla tested the car, the instructions on some stuff was not in all languages. (yes, NCAP penalizes your score based on language availability)

2) At the time, Tesla did not have automatic braking.

3) During the test they had a software issue (which fixed the problem) but according to NCAP they can’t count the fix in the rating.

Effectively the big difference between US NHTSA test and EuroNCAP is the NHTSA actually test safety. While in EuroNCAP they have a lot of extra stuff

He said he got another s model.?? That car does not look like a write 0ff from what I can see from here , The damage looks/is rather minor. Maybe he changed it because he didn’t like the idea of having a damage repaired Car? Some people are sticklers on that..)(*&^%$!@#$%^???

It’s hard to tell from the outside, but if that accident bent up the battery pack underneath, it’s a write off. The cost would be too high. (repair cost) + (salvage value) > (current value)

Given the salvage value of around, say $15-30k + repair cost over $35k, then it is easy to be over the current value of a 2013 P85.

Insurance companies will almost always “total” a car on paper, even if the repairs are half the value of an older car. They play games and often try to make a side “profit” off their low-ball estimated salvage value of an exotic car like a Tesla.

That was my experience with a large Mercedes which had a mild crash (estimated repair: $2500. Estimated value after repair: $4,500. They said NO to repair). Why? They tried to low-ball me with a ridiculously cheap salvage value, HALF the actual salvage value. If this happens to you, go get a car expert fast or pay $200 to an insurance lawyer to write a settlement letter, attaching data. Trust me, they don’t want to explain low-ball numbers to a jury.

Yea Insurance companies almost always ‘TOTAL” a car Then they turn around sell it their Friendly body shop, whom they do business with ., The body shop repairs it & Re-Sells It for a Profit & the Friendly Insurance adjuster gets his/her Cut! Happens on a Daily basis…. I’ve seen it done many times.

Who else was thinking: What happened to the battery? Who has it? How much for it? after reading “The Model S was a write-off”? 🙂

Future Fact:

In the near future, Sentient Robots will track down and strip out crashed EV batteries, and use them to replace their own.

I’m failing to see what the life changing event was? He got into an accident and wasn’t injured? Then he got the same car again? What changed in his life, except maybe he’s learned to look both ways, even at a green light.

Yeah, this (by the Tesla logo and the mood music) is a commercial. Tesla was warned not to keep claiming what they do by the NTHSB (USA) since they claimed Tesla is doing misleading advertising. But since this has been rehashed 4 or 5 times, lets all save pixels and computer bytes and go on to the ‘life-changing event’. From personal experience I can say that my biggest collision, where I was hit head on by a pickup truck (I was in a 1987 chrysler Lebaron GTS – no air bags), was pretty threatening to me. I blacked out for 1/2 hour, both of us were approaching each other at 40 mph rate (80 mph closing distance), and, after the collision, my car richochet’d backwards over 1/2 a block before it finally stopped. The collpsable steering column was pushed back beyond its range and ALL the sheet metal on the front of the car was collapsed like an accordian on top of the windshield. The front tires afterwards were the most forward part of the car. I was rushed to the hospital, and had a broken sturnum, bumped heart, and a bad concussion which actually was the worst part since… Read more »

err… National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

“I guess that’s why they call them accidents.”

Well, they don’t call them accidents any longer, because that word is subjective, and implies that crashes are inevitable, and without cause. That there’s no way we can prevent them. The NHTSA, the CHP, CalTrans, the medical profession… have all stopped using the word accident to describe crashes. The video does a great job in describing what happened except the two times – when it shows the text that claims the driver was in a terrible accident, and when the driver himself says “I guess that’s why they call them accidents.”


What a surprise

I keep thinking about the battery fires in the S. The temperatures and explosions are much worse than a typical car fire.

The one car that fell down the hill or cliff got so hot that they could not even find skeletal remains of the driver.

Likewise, when looking at the one SuperCharger where the car caught on fire, the main emphasis I was making at the time was there was no emergency disconnect to at least shut off the electricity, so that if it was ‘fanning the flames’, at least that source of energy could be disconnected.

But the fact remains that almost the entire car was cremated, as would have happened if the driver remained in the car. One might say the driver would have left the car, but what if the driver stayed in the car and fell asleep and then the doors didn’t work?