The Tesla Model X Is The Perfect Adventure Vehicle

Tesla Model X

SEP 26 2017 BY EVANNEX 13

Tesla Model X

Tesla Model X


Some have said that the Tesla Model X is a car from the future. But, could the Model X also be the ultimate adventure vehicle?

Brendan Leonard at Outside* attempted to answer that question in the latest issue of the award-winning adventure travel magazine. Before hitting the road in Tesla’s Model X, Leonard’s girlfriend told him,

“We’re taking a dirtbag road trip in the least dirtbag car of all time.”

Tesla Model X

Model X is an impressive outdoor adventure vehicle

Leonard started their road trip: “After we juiced the car, my girlfriend, Hilary, and I loaded our camping and climbing gear into the Tesla’s front and rear trunks, bade our neighbor goodbye, and pulled away—reveling in that stealth electric-car silence. We had set out from our Denver home five days earlier on a six-day road trip in Tesla’s new Model X 100D, the automaker’s bid to reach a more adventurous demographic.”

What was his first impression of Tesla’s Model X?

“It’s a black pod with all-wheel drive, a panoramic windshield, touchscreens everywhere, and Tesla’s Falcon Wing doors, which open upward like on the famous 1980s DeLorean from Back to the Future… we sought to answer a simple but pertinent question: Can an electric car carry us on a road trip across the West?”

*This article comes to us courtesy of EVANNEX (which also makes aftermarket Tesla accessories). Authored by Matt Pressman.

Tesla Model X

Tesla Model X hits the road

“Road trips are absolutely central to our vision,” a Tesla spokesperson explained to Leonard. “Our plan is to cover all major forms of terrestrial transport, including long-distance travel.”

Right now, Tesla has built 365 Supercharger stations in the U.S., including 142 out west, with 141 more slated to open before the end of the year. At a Tesla Supercharger, it takes roughly an hour and a half to refill the Model X from zero to 100 percent, but it takes longer at Tesla’s more plentiful but lower-amp Destination Chargers, which are installed at hotels and restaurants.

Leonard explains, ” A fully charged Model X is designed to go 295 miles, but for now there is only about one Tesla station per 80 miles of interstate in the 11 Western states, so careful planning is essential… it’s tough to fully account for the kinds of variables that can drain your battery. For instance, driving over I-70’s Loveland Pass en route to Arapahoe Basin on our first day—a nearly 6,000-foot climb over 65 miles—depleted our battery by a third. Shortly after leaving A-Basin, we pulled off in Silverthorne to plug into a Supercharger.”

Tesla Model X

Model X charging at a Tesla Supercharger

What did Leonard do while charging up the Model X?

He explains: “We weren’t sitting on the curb watching the seconds tick by; we traversed the via ferrata above town. Usually while our car charged we were climbing, skiing, or hiking. Which is the kind of stuff we were after in the first place.”

Like any Tesla owner, he’d like to see more superchargers. “EV road-trippers will have to adopt a little bit of what VW-bus drivers have always exhibited out on the open road: patience… [but] once we set off exploring, the Tesla was plenty sporty: in a moment of adventurous driving on a rocky road, I tapped a touchscreen to raise the clearance to 8.3 inches and cruised along without worrying that we’d bottom out.” After all, in addition to being a fun SUV for adventure travel, the Model X also happens to be quite the off-road wonder.


*Source: Outside

*Editor’s Note: EVANNEX, which also sells aftermarket gear for Teslas, has kindly allowed us to share some of its content with our readers. Our thanks go out to EVANNEX, Check out the site here.

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13 Comments on "The Tesla Model X Is The Perfect Adventure Vehicle"

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I’ve taken many, many road trips in the Model X.

My take is that an “adventure” is doable as long as it isn’t more than 100 miles from a supercharger. The X range isn’t fantastic, so a round trip range of 200 miles is the absolute maximum.

This precludes many spots, but most interesting spots are still accessible–Yosemite, etc. Yellowstone is iffy; the park is vast and superchargers are available only at the periphery.

During the eclipse, unfortunately, many superchargers experienced queuing. Waiting around for hours at the equivalent of a truck stop really kills the adventuring mood. Even without queueing, a long drive is likely to result in 2+ hours spent waiting across multiple superchargers.

Yep, it took us 12 hours to get ~350 miles back up I-5 after the eclipse. That was in a gasser.

It was insane.

“There were many of these long layovers during our trip. (Headwinds can also sap battery life.) Between Denver and Telluride, we stopped at two Superchargers—a total of two hours on the cord—killing time at chain restaurants.”

“In Telluride, a town more than 126 miles from any Supercharger, our vehicle needed six hours at a Destination Charger just to make it to Moab, less than three hours away. Granted, we weren’t sitting on the curb watching the seconds tick by; we traversed the via ferrata above town. Usually while our car charged we were climbing, skiing, or hiking.”

So while supercharging they killed time in chain restaurants, when they used the non-SC which required six hours of recharging they did adventurous things…

No roof rack. Not exactly perfect

It is “weekend warrior’s” version of adventure which is probably okay for majority of the buyers in its intended buyer market.


The overwhelming majority of “adventurous” people are generally driving to paved parking lots then going for a hike…Others that camp overnight usually are away from vehicles…

It’s incredible rare for someone to just turn off a major highway and drive for 50 miles…

The accepted usage of “adventure travel” is long-established (it’s one of the large market segments for motorcycles), and pretty much by definition, it means unpaved roads & a vehicle with serious ground clearance & suspension travel.

Haha! No, it means driving to a parking lot and hiking or camping. You’re thinking of off-roading or mudding.

Or, just taking my 1984 Nissan Micra, on a weekend trip, from our CNR RR Work Camp, 35 Miles East of Prince Rupert, BC, about 6+ Hours East back to Terrace, and North on partly paved and much Gravel Roads, then West to Stewart, BC on similar roads, and popping over to Hyder, Alaska (the Southern Most town or Population on the Tip of the Alaska Panhandle)!

That trip cost me two 12 Hour Days of lost Overtime, plus travel costs and overnight in Stewart, but was worth it!

The Tesla ‘Jeep’ will be impressive, when it comes, in 12 more years!

Yup, waiting on the Tesla Folding Electric Bike, that fits on the Model X Accessories Rack, and does not stick out the sides beyond the width of the Model X!

And the Tesla Motorcycle! (That will probably not come untill after the Model 3, the Tesla Semi, Model Y, New Roadster, and Pickup!

Maybe Elon will announce his Electric Plane, somewhere by that time! Going to need to get that development done, and some production experience on it, before they bring it to Mars!

I guess we all have a different definition of “adventure” but in my opinion the X is seriously lacking as far as an adventure vehicle goes. Lack of a roof rack, and tires and suspension not designed for off road use being the main issues. I am hoping the Bollinger 4 door comes to market. For my use this would be far better than the Tesla X.

Some here are limiting the definition of “adventure drives” to whatever an X can do. It can’t get far from a charger, it can’t go 85 mph for more than 2.5 to 3 hours non-stop, it can’t hold a roof rack. Adventure drivers commonly do all these things. So they just redefine “adventure driving”.