The 2012-2016 Tesla Model S and On: Have They Gotten Better?

The Tesla Model S was an impressive vehicle when it arrived in 2012. It’s not the same EV 10 years later.
Written by Andrew Kidd
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Jul 27, 2022
Tesla
might’ve ignited the EV revolution in the late ‘00s with the Roadster, but the automaker didn’t truly change the game until it released the first
electric car
it fully designed in-house, the Model S.
With a 265-mile range and up to 416 horsepower available in its top trim, the Model S was the first seven-seating EV that you could truly rely on for all types of road driving.
Tesla didn’t follow the year-over-year upgrade model used by the rest of the auto industry. Instead, they updated the Model S throughout the year.
That makes the car’s evolution a little harder to track, but
Jerry
the
super app
dug around to give you a clear picture of how we ended up with the Tesla Model S we know today.

Tesla Model S: the early years

Tesla first released the Model S in the last half of June, 2012.
Edmunds
says the capability of its 85 kWh battery pack and electric motor blew the competition away.
But that wasn’t the only benefit of the Model S. It also came with a 17-inch touchscreen, a feature that was quite novel for 2012. Bluetooth connection, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a seven-speaker stereo were also standard features.
By 2014, Tesla had improved the range of the base
Model S
by over 20 miles and added a dual-motor option that gave the car all-wheel drive and boosted it to a whopping 691 hp. 
2015 saw a bump in battery sizes, with the cheapest option hopping up to 70 kWh and the largest jumping to 90 kWh. The range for the 85 and 90 kWh trims increased slightly to 270 miles.

The Model S from 2016 to today

2016 was a big year for Tesla and the Model S. In the car, the range of the 90 kWh
battery
pack jumped to 294 miles, the entry-level 60 trim dropped the starting price to $71,200, the front-end got a facelift, and an air filtration system was added to the cabin. 
For Tesla as a whole, the company’s first foray into semi-autonomous driver-assist programs, Autopilot, debuted across the lineup. Charging times also improved, with the 90 kWh battery managing a full charge in nine hours.
Since then, the Model S has continued to improve. The 100 kWh battery introduced in 2017 has now become the norm, reaching a maximum range of 405 miles. 
The high-performance Plaid trim arrived in 2021, giving the EV its supercar status. Tesla started beta-testing its Full Self-Driving tech later that year.

One downside to the new Model S: cost of ownership

Tesla continues to lead the electric vehicle market, and the Model S has become its vessel for debuting innovations. But the introduction of vehicles with lower price points like the Model 3 and Model Y has pushed the price of the Model S higher than its ever been. 
For 2022, Tesla dropped the Model S’ lower trim levels, bringing the starting price for the EV into the six-figure range. The move did not do any favors for the car’s average insurance rate. Average coverage for a new Model S sits at well over $3,200 a year.
But you can lower your Model S premiums by shopping for car insurance quotes online with Jerry. A licensed broker that offers end-to-end support, the Jerry app gathers affordable quotes, helps you switch plans, and can even help you cancel your old policy. 
The average Jerry user saves $887 a year on car insurance. 
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National General
Allstate
AAA
Aig
Chubb
ClearCover
CSE
Dairyland
DirectAuto
Elephant Auto Insurance
Kemper
Libertymutual
Gainsco
Mapfre
Mercury Auto
Metromile
Nationwide
Plymouth Rock
Progressive
State Auto
Safeco
Travelers
Metlife
Bristol West

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