Tesla Model S Scores 103 Points On Consumer Reports’ 0-100 Rating Scale


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Consumer Reports Logo

In Spring of 2015, Consumer Reports purchased a Tesla Model S P85D for full evaluation purposes.

Testing of this vehicle is now complete and a score has been issued.

Consumer Reports rates vehicles on a scale of 0 to 100.  The Model S P85D scored 103 points, the highest ever by a wide margin.  The second highest scoring car ever tested by Consumer Reports was the RWD Model S with 99 points.

Consumer Reports states:

“The all-wheel-drive Tesla Model S P85D sedan performed better in our tests than any other car ever has, breaking the Consumer Reports Ratings system.

With a six-figure price tag, the P85D is expensive, meaning its virtues will be experienced by a rare few. But its significance as a breakthrough model from an American startup company is dramatic.

In rating it, however, we faced a quandary: The Tesla initially scored 103 in the Consumer Reports’ Ratings system, which by definition doesn’t go past 100. The car set a new benchmark, so we had to make changes to our scoring to account for it. Those changes didn’t affect the scores of other cars.”

Even though it scored 103 points, Consumer Reports notes that the vehicle does have a few “imperfections:”

“To be clear, the Tesla’s 100 score doesn’t make the P85D a perfect car—even at $127,820. It has imperfections. The interior materials aren’t as opulent as other high-ticket automobiles, and its ride is firmer and louder than our base Model S.”

Here are the “pros and cons” from testing:

Pros & Cons

Pros & Cons

The vehicle’s rating doesn’t take into account reliability, which is evaluated separately.  The Model S scores average in reliability.

Consumer Reports concludes:

“…the Tesla Model S P85D is an automotive milepost. It’s a remarkable car that paves a new, unorthodox course, and it’s a powerful statement of American startup ingenuity.”


You’ll find Consumer Reports’ full P85D road test review here.

Consumer Reports issued this Tweet and video just moments ago:

What do you call a car that scores 103 out of 100? #carofthefuture

Source: Consumer Reports

Categories: Tesla

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34 Comments on "Tesla Model S Scores 103 Points On Consumer Reports’ 0-100 Rating Scale"

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They were too conservative in their opinion. Tesla deserved 105 at the least.

Kinda like “this one goes up to 11”


Well apparently the Tesla audio systems do ‘go up to 11’.

Would love to see them buy & test the high-end model x the moment it’s available

Or upgrade their P85D, into a P90D with Ludicrous Mode…

LOL! Tesla broke the scale!

This is like all those jocks who claim to give “110 percent” in their sport. They certainly can’t be faulted for their enthusiasm. Their mathematical ability, however, is rather more questionable. 😉


Growing up (I’m 37 now) in Czechoslovakia during communism, my father would always joke about when communists always boasted of hitting their 5 year economic targets overachieving them by 120%+. All while the economic gap (which was non-existent after WW2) between Czechoslovakia and Western Europe was growing bigger and bigger. I am a fan of Tesla, but 103%, come on, it’s just going to be a source of ridicule.

Sure, there will be from some quarters but it is not unprecedented to break a scale with a disruptive product.

Wasn’t this the car with the door handle defect? Great score, but how can that rating be valid if the car had such a defect before they even could start the test?


Tesla bought the score.

Extraordinary accusations require extraordinary proof (or, you know, at least some evidence) if they’re not to be considered laughable.

Yes. You’re absoutely right. Tesla “bought” that exceptional rating with years of obsessive blood, sweat and tears; bringing what was once only a distant dream– into a disruptive reality that others can now enjoy.

As the Model S continues to evolve, watch the bar raise even higher…

Or the price tag which CR openly admit that at $127K, it is MOST Expensive car that CR ever bought for testing.

You get what you paid for. Sure, Tesla P85D delivered everything and more than what they expected. But it also cost more than anything they ever bought for long term testing.

Wait, in your post a few down CR are “a bunch of morons” but here the car “delivered everything and more”?

Do you get in arguments with yourself all the time, and when you do, do other people stare?

Car is awesome. But it is stupid to score beyond CR’s own range by its own people.

CR is extraordinarily transparent with their measurement and scoring practices. Any irregularity created by a “bought” review would be easily called out.

Counter-Strike Cat said:

“Tesla bought the score.”

I think most people know that Consumer Reports scrupulously avoids any influence on their ratings. They don’t accept paid ads in their magazine, and unlike all the auto review magazines, their reviewers are not allowed to accept “swag” or dinner invitations or other *cough* bribes *cough* gratuities from auto makers.

So, Counter-Strike Cat, just who do you think your Tesla-bashing FUD is going to fool? Are you aiming that at those few who are ignorant of Consumer Reports’ sterling reputation?

Or maybe you’re just trolling.

They explicitly point out that reliability is a separate rating, and that the Model S gets “average” in reliability.

Reliability vs a delivered defect.

That still falls under ‘reliability’. They would have counted the handle as a negative in this review if, *when working as intended*, it was still inconvenient, awkward, or otherwise a bad design choice.

Watch their video, this is a test of the vehicle capabilities not of its reliability. Some key points are its excellent fuel economy, large seating capacity and incredible acceleration. Comparing these to ICE cars on a points based system is what increases their score since a fast ICE car will get bad gas mileage.

Lol 1 door handle on 1 car not operating properly does not make the 70,000+ other Teslas “unreliable”

best car ever

and how is being able to surf the internet distracting? That is a choice, people are always on their phones when driving, the Tesla having a huge screen with internet is not a problem, its the dumb*ss people choosing to use it.

I pay attention and drive 110% and listen to music, thats it.

Koenigsegg said:

“people are always on their phones when driving…”

People are always having accidents due to distracted driving, too. I agree that using Tesla’s enormous interactive screen while driving isn’t worse than using a cell phone while driving, but neither should be allowed for obviously safety reasons. Unfortunately, there’s really no way to avoid using at least the navigation system while driving. You can’t reasonably pull over and stop every time you need to interact with the navigation system while driving.

Fortunately, the Model S’s entertainment system can be voice-controlled, so you can select songs without taking your attention off the road. For other functions, the driver really should pull over and stop before taking his eyes off the road.

One reason that the Model S gets a down-check from Consumer Reports for its lack of knobs and switches on the dashboard is because having everything controlled by the infotainment system means it takes longer to access, for example, the air conditioner or heater system. And unfortunately, that causes distracted driving, even if it’s only for a few seconds.


The fan, Ac etc can be controlled by the buttons on the steering weel. Press the menu button on the right side and select the function you want to adjust.

I’m guessing that very few people here buy Mercedes, BMW, Audi, Jaguar, or Range Rover vehicles. Reliability as measured by the number of defects is terrible amongst these marquees. It hasn’t hurt them much at all. Certainly for my Mercedes, as long as you take care of the small stuff and stay on top of the maintenance, the drivetrain will last a very long time without falling to pieces all over.

Most vehicles with more gadgets are more prone to a higher defect count. That goes with the territory.


“at do you call a car that scores 103 out of 100? #carofthefuture”

It is called a poor car review…

If they call themselves engineers, then they shouldn’t ever get a job anywhere else except for Tesla marketing team.

If they broke their own so called “scales”, then they must be a bunch of morons…

They’re honest enough to say that their previous criteria and expectations for vehicles based on years of previously testing ICE vehicles– no longer applied in many cases.

How exactly does the problem of quantifying a radically new vehicle like the Model S, make them morons?

They are “morons” for assignng a score on a scale that no longer applies.

Any real engineers would have corrected that mistake before publishing results.

Not to mention the fact that if the scores are unscientifically choosen, then the ratings are meaningless. If the scores are added from each sub category, then they either over scored the category or couldn’t do basic math…

Quoting the article:

“The Tesla initially scored 103 in the Consumer Reports’ Ratings system, which by definition doesn’t go past 100. The car set a new benchmark, so we had to make changes to our scoring to account for it.”

Perhaps, ModernMarvelFan, the “moron” here is the guy who didn’t actually read the article before commenting on it.

Perhaps, you should learn about how engineering works. Since you obviously have shown you have none (despite you have changed your login name from Lensman to pu-pu).

The fact that they scored more than their own system allowed in the first place shows that either their system are poorly designe (morons did it), or they couldn’t do basic math, or their rating are meaningless which aren’t based on fundamental facts. If they have to change their rating system to fix it, then it already showed their system was designed incorrectly.

And for the last time, if you want to correct all my posts all the time which is NOT directed at you, I would certainly play alone in insult match any time…


Scoring 103 on a scale of 100 only proves that Tesla’s revolutionary drivetrain will even force CR to re-calibrate their scale.

That’s why they call this phenomenon a “disruption.”

Congrats To Tesla,

Now when can buy an aftermarket kit to fit to a MX-5 2016.

I would so like an and affordable powered EV convertible!