How Tesla Motors reinvented the Electric Car

In 2003, Tesla Motors was founded with one simple mission: to manufacture electric vehicles that didn’t compromise on speed or performanc...

In 2003, Tesla Motors was founded with one simple mission: to manufacture electric vehicles that didn’t compromise on speed or performance.

But perhaps what is most interesting about Tesla Motors is that this mantra has its roots in a 127-year-old vision. The name ‘Tesla’ is derived from Serbian inventor Nikola Tesla, who is widely credited as the leading contributor to the design of Alternating Current (AC) technology. It was this fascination with electricity supply systems that helped Tesla to patent the electric motor in 1888 - an innovation that would change the world in just over a century.

Influenced by the work of Nikola Tesla, this motor company has continued to shape the world of electric vehicles and auto-engineering technology. We'll delve into how Tesla has changed the world of cars, looking at everything from the Tesla Roadster to the innovative Model X.

What has Elon Musk achieved for Tesla Motors?

From a business perspective, Tesla Motors was the first American car startup to turn a profit in decades. This is thanks, in part, to the visionary leadership of Elon Musk, one of the most successful entrepreneurs of his generation.

Tesla Roadster (2008). 

With a strong culture based on integrity and a desire to manufacture energy-efficient car technology, Tesla vehicles were never going to be quick to compromise.

So when the Roadster was introduced in 2008, the world was stunned to finally see what Tesla had been working on. This remarkable car achieved the seemingly impossible, achieving 0-60mph in just 3.7 seconds using a lithium-ion battery. This exceptional vehicle succeeded in setting the electric motor standard across the world, and thousands have been sold in over 30 countries.

But where Tesla really excelled with the Roadster is making electric vehicles a popular and attractive option for the masses. Rejecting the traditional notion that electric auto-engineering lacked muscle, the Roadster stormed ahead in its class and proved - once and for all - that electric didn’t mean slow.

Model S (2012). 

Following the widespread critical acclaim of the Roadster, its successor had some big shoes to fill - and luckily it didn’t disappoint.

In an attempt to make electric car technology a family-friendly option, Tesla created the Model S, a premium sedan of sports car standards. This stunning vehicle succeeded in achieving 0-60mph in just 4.2 seconds, making it extremely powerful for its size.

In fact, the Model S was so well received that it won Motor Trend’s 2013 Car of the Year award. For the first time, an electric car wasn’t recognised just for its superb green technology, but also for its overall design. This trend was repeated across the board as the Model S also won:

● 2013 AutoGuide.com’s Reader’s Choice Car of the Year 
● CNET Tech Car of the Year 2012 
● Popular Science’s Auto Grand Award Winner 2012

This semi-revolution was thanks entirely to Tesla Motors and it’s paved the way for other businesses ever since.

Model S P85D. 

Within just two years, Tesla succeeded in surprising audiences once again by introducing the Model S P85D.

With a greater focus on performance and speed, the P85D was designed with an excellent efficiency motor located on both the front and rear of the car. The result was an electric supercar, capable of reaching incredible acceleration of 0-60mph in just 2.8 seconds.

This makes the P85D the fastest four-door production car ever manufactured. This helped to cement Tesla, once again, as a pioneer of speed and world-class engineering.

Model X. 

So what’s next for Tesla in 2015?

In the coming months, Tesla is expected to launch the Model X, a superb crossover vehicle that will defy the limits of electric car technology.

This stunning sports utility vehicle will come with falcon wings doors and a dual motor all-wheel-drive, proving that beautiful design and energy efficiency don’t have to work in opposition.

Although it hasn’t been released yet, the Model X is highly anticipated to become Tesla’s best performing car. And we can’t wait to see what they have in store.

The future of electric cars with Tesla Motors. 

For many green car enthusiasts, there are few car manufacturers more innovative or revolutionary than Tesla Motors.

And yet, despite the on-going popularity of Tesla’s electric cars, one major problem still remains - these are not vehicles for the masses. Each of Tesla’s models still costs significantly more than the average car - meaning that Tesla is still very much an aspirational brand.

It comes as little surprise, then, that this fact doesn’t sit well with Musk. In order to encourage other car manufacturers to invest in green technology, Tesla did the unthinkable. In 2014, the car giant released its patents into the public domain. At the time of release, Musk told the world:

“Tesla Motors was created to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport. If we clear a path to the creation of compelling electric vehicles, but then lay intellectual property landmines behind us to inhibit others, we are acting in a manner contrary to that goal. Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology.”

Although it’s not yet been a year since Tesla launched its patents into the public domain, the consequences have been arguably substantial, with Toyota also releasing the patents to its fuel-cell technology.

With all this in mind, there is little doubt that Tesla has revolutionised the electric car industry. But perhaps it’s the legacy of Tesla and Musk that will have the biggest impact on the electric car - not only shaping our immediate future, but how we consume and generate energy in the generations to come.

Written by Sam Dickson for the Tilsun Group, the vehicle leasing specialist.

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