How do you open, start, and lock the car?
- The key is a card the size of a credit card which you'll keep safe in your wallet. Simply hold the key up against the A-frame (spot behind the door) to unlock the car, and hold it against the center console dash (the screen will show you where) to start the car. Hold it against the A-frame once more to turn it off and walk away. I can also control it remotely via a phone app if you experience any issues.
- Additional controls, such as opening the trunk/frunk and charging port can be controlled via the touchscreen.
How do you drive the Tesla? How different is it from a regular ICE (Internal combustion engine) vehicle?
- Your Tesla drives like any automatic vehicle you've driven before with a few small differences. For starters, nearly everything is controlled through a built in computer touchscreen. Most of it is already set and is automatic (lights, wipers, etc.) similar to other modern cars. No need to change anything unless you desire to. You have a handful of buttons on the steering wheel, and the standard paddles as well which control things like volume, cruise control speed, wipers, and park/drive/reverse modes. It will take you only a few minutes to get used to it, and you are off from there!
- Your Tesla has aggressive regenerative breaking by default, and will take you only a few minutes to adapt. After a day of driving with it, you'll never want to go back. Stop and go traffic has never been so easy! Seriously, this is one of the coolest features of the car. I know it sounds funny, but you have to try it.
- The car is FAST. 0-60 in 5 seconds is quite peppy, and that power/torque is available at all speeds. If you need to overtake someone to pass, you can rocket past them like no internal combustion engine can. You'll probably spend the first hour driving the car giggling every time you punch the gas pedal. I know I did.
Does the car drive itself? What about this Autopilot mode I've been hearing about?
- Autopilot is built in, and incredibly useful for long highway/interstate travel. Driving in rain has never been safer. For starters though, keep in mind that Autopilot is actually just assisted driving, and you should always remain vigilant and watchful. It is not meant for city driving yet. Keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. It will NOT stop at traffic lights and stop signs on its own for instance. That feature is coming at the end of 2019. Currently, all it is meant for is lane control and collision avoidance (it'll slow down or stop for a car in front of it for instance). Only on highways and interstates can you enable the fully self-driving portion of autopilot where it'll change lanes for you, speed up and slow down, take interstate exits, and so on. Just be sure to disable it when you enter an area with traffic lights and stop signs.
- The car does have automatic parking assist (a letter "P" will appear when it detects a parking space is available that it can park in). This is mostly intended to help parallel park. Slowly pull forward past the spot you want to park in and the car should detect the spot, prompting you on screen if you wish for the parking assist to take over.
- A rear view camera appears automatically when putting the car in reverse making it safer to back in and out of spaces.
Other questions? Look here.
- Your Tesla has built in cabin overheat protection, so when you leave your car in the hot sun, you can rest assured you won't come back to a scorching hot car. Florida can be HOT!
- Multiple USB ports for charging phones and devices are built in. Two are located in one of the front center console areas, and two are located for the rear passengers just above their AC vents. I've upgraded some spots to allow wireless charging if your phone supports it.
- AC vents for your rear passengers make for happy people.
- Heated seats are amazing! Control them from your touchscreen.
- Purple lighting has been installed all over inside the car. I think it looks cool, and my daughter loves it. Night time driving is now even more fun!
- Yes, there are video games you can play from the touch screen (not while driving though). To access them (and other "Easter eggs"), click the Tesla logo at the top of the touchscreen, then click the Atari icon.
- Please be respectful of the settings I've pre-programmed for myself (saved radio stations, seat profile settings, etc.). Thanks!
What do I do if there's an issue with the car? Something broke! I got a flat tire!
- There is a tire inflation kit included in the frunk for emergencies. Please call/text me immediately for any roadside issues before attempting to resolve yourself though. Tesla has built in roadside assistance, and will require me to activate it. Turo also has roadside assistance through their insurance. We'll work it out together to resolve any issues you may run into. Most importantly, do not try and have the car towed yourself. Doing so improperly may permanently damage the drive train, so again, I'll be more than happy to help you out if you experience any issues.
How far can I drive the Tesla before I need to charge it? How long does it take to charge up the car? How does charging my Tesla even work???
- When topped off at a 100% charge, you will get an average of a 310 mile range. Charging at a Tesla Supercharger up to the 80% mark takes 15-30 minutes depending on how depleted the battery was. There are Tesla Superchargers all over major highways and interstates. You are never far from one.
- Please do not take the battery below 20% if you can help it as it lowers the lifetime of the battery. The last 20% is there for emergencies essentially. The built in map system on the touchscreen will help you plan your trip and take you to the nearest Tesla Supercharger automatically.
- Charging is as easy as plugging in and walking away. Some Tesla Superchargers (and 3rd party chargers) will bill for "idle charging", so please move the Tesla to a normal parking space once you are charged up. Charging to 100% is not generally recommended as it takes as long to go from 80% to 100% as it did from 0% to 80%. It's best to head out with your 280 mile range and stop at another Supercharger a few hours later.
- Charging on a 3rd party charger can take longer (typically 5 hours or more to get to 80%), so these are best left for hotel parking lots overnight. Your Tesla can even plug into a standard wall outlet for charging as a last resort. 3rd party and standard plug adapters are included and stored in the trunk. No adapter is needed for the Tesla Superchargers.
- I've driven this Tesla from Gainesville to Orlando (Disney World / Epcot) and had over 40% of the battery remaining. 310 miles is a LOT of range for Florida.
How safe is the car really though?
- Only three cars have had a perfect rating on the modern NTHS testing. All three were Tesla models. These cars are extremely hard to break, crush, flip over, and so on.
- The car is around 5 times LESS likely to catch fire over an internal combustion engine vehicle.
- Tesla's with autopilot enabled are actually around 7 times less likely to crash than non-Tesla's.