Two CNN Reporters, Abigail Bassett and Peter Valdes-Dapena set out to prove who was right in the battle over the mileage claims on the Model Tesla S by driving the same route that John Broder drove earlier today on Valentines day (February 14,2013) . Basically John Broder set out on a 200 mile trip and ran out of power, claiming the Tesla Model S ran out of battery long before Tesla promised it would. But Abigal Bassett and Peter Valdes Dapena drove the exact same route earlier today in similar conditions and the results were surprisingly different then what John Broder reported on. Long story short, they actually made the entire trip with range to spare (38 miles to be exact).
Set out to prove John Broder wrong, Abigail and Peter drove from Washington DC to Boston and along the way would drive between Newark,Delaware and Millford, Connecticut the same route where John Broder ran out of battery.First they both drove from Washington DC to Newark Delaware without a hitch. Then they set off on the same route Broder took earlier in the week (a 200 mile one way trip with a 270 mile charge in the "tank")
The two CNN reporters reported a relatively trouble free trip between Newark, Del and Milford Conn. During parts of the trip, the two CNN Journalists even claimed they were driving a bit faster than they should have been,( i.e. pedal to the metal type of driving). And when they arrived at their destination waypoint in Millford, the Tesla Model S had plenty of charge left on their battery (38 miles). After topping off at the Supercharger in Millford, Abigail and Peter finally headed to their destination Boston (126 miles away) and when they checked in for the night and completed their journey, not surprisingly the Model S had 96 miles to spare.
Some could even argue they made a much better trip as compared to Broder. They simply drove a one-way DC to Boston trip, 450 miles and proved the point,that with two stops for charging, the Tesla Model S can travel from DC to Boston.
*If you don’t know what all the hub-bub is about, the internet is ablaze after a scathing and critical report by NY Times John Broder hit the web highlighting how the Model Tesla S failed to perform as promised on total driving range. NY Times journalist John Broder took a factory model Tesla S on a 200 mile trip between two charging stations in Newark, Del., and Milford, Conn. With the Tesla Model S’s 300 miles range, there was plenty of mileage to spare. But that was farther from the truth according to John Broder.
After more than a dozen calls to Tesla during his drive over concerns of a rapidly depleting battery,John stopped for the night before reaching his destination to sleep before continuing on the next morning. When he awoke, with temperatures below 30 F, the battery showed less charge than when he stopped in for the evening. After calling Tesla ( at which point they recommended John and their Tesla Model S head to the nearest supercharger unit). John limped to the next charging station, but before he could make it, the car shut down altogether and John Broder was towed on a flatbed to Millford.
Astonished by the results, Elon Musk pored over the data from John Broder's Tesla Model S and found out that John Broder had far from followed normal driving protocol.John had never engaged cruise control as he claimed and even drove circles in the parking lot to deplete the batteries. According to Musk via the onboard data-logging,
- As the State of Charge log shows, the Model S battery never ran out of energy at any time, including when Broder called the flatbed truck.
- Cruise control was never set to 54 mph as claimed in the article, nor did he limp along at 45 mph. Broder in fact drove at speeds from 65 mph to 81 mph for a majority of the trip and at an average cabin temperature setting of 72 F.
- At the point in time that he claims to have turned the temperature down, he in fact turned the temperature up to 74 F.
- In his article, Broder claims that “the car fell short of its projected range on the final leg.” Then he bizarrely states that the screen showed “Est. remaining range: 32 miles” and the car traveled “51 miles," contradicting his own statement (see images below). The car actually did an admirable job exceeding its projected range. Had he not insisted on doing a nonstop 61-mile trip while staring at a screen that estimated half that range, all would have been well. He constructed a no-win scenario for any vehicle, electric or gasoline.
The facts don’t lie, and now John Broder is trying to cover his story as best he can like any good journalist does. And now that these two CNN Journalists have also proven him wrong, John Broder’s case isn’t looking very strong. Awesome job from CNN. Way to disprove John Broder.