Wednesday, May 28, 2008

New drivetrain on the Tesla... but still waiting


I am number 215 in line for the Tesla EV car. It was supposed to be delivered in February. The projection now is more like December. Hey! it is still within the same year! I believe! I want to believe!

Truth be told, when I visited their shop, I was a bit scared. It felt more like a silicon valley hacker den than a real car factory. I wanted less US hacker, more German engineer. I mean after-all I am going to be driving this thing and the fact that they call their drive-train version 1.5 and a lot of the car is still 1.0 is enough to send a shiver down my software engineers spine.

I have resigned myself to the fact that this product is highly experimental, potentially harmful until proven otherwise, and is more a "prototype" even in its final version. I still can't wait to get my hands on the car, I am a willing beta tester.

The news is about coverage from the CTO of Tesla around the gear box. Basically it is a "one speed" car with a new gear-box. It used to be a 2 speed car. The blog (you have to be a member to access it) is full of congratulatory posts. Great! fantastic! genius! Me? I just want to ask "where the frak is my car?". The longer they delay the less good-will they have from me. There is still a lot of cheer leading going on, and clearly, people plunking down 100k on faith, do it because they believe this is "more than a car". Clearly I should cut them some slack. This is an ambitious project, with challenging new technology and since this is a car and not software they better iron out the kinks.

But let's get the car going and in the garages of the early buyers shall we? In the famous words of the "Wolf" in Pulp Fiction: "let's not suck each other d*cks quite yet"...

4 comments:

Klaus Dreher said...

Why not buy a gyrocopter? You could takeoff and land in your backyard and it's pure fun!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCahT7ZotKM

Marcf said...

Looks even more fun than the tesla. It also looks crazy dangerous :)

I am afraid of heights. Serious. I used to be a paratrooper and now I really don't like flying even.

gregbo said...

LOL ... no way I'd drive a "beta" car ...

Marcf said...

Hey Gregbo,

yeah.... it is definitely beta.

Hey I feel good like I am a 'test pilot'. A geekier, less jockier version of it.

When I was a kid I wanted to be an astronaut, I was fascinated with the test pilots that risked their lives to test cool planes. At 15 I knew I wanted to go to MIT because that is where the "cool science and tech frontier" was.

Se we are going to die going 65 miles per hour as the car catches on fire from one of the 25000 Li-ion batteries. Semi-LOL.

One of my good friends here in Atlanta is a fellow "polytechnicien" and was involved in early design of batteries for the Peugeot 106 which was a full EV in the early 90. He is now in his late 50's and very much into batteries still. He talks about the "nail test". The nail test is when you drive a nail through the battery and see what happens, essentially, it blows up! he he. Literally, the way he characterized the batteries is "A LOT OF ENERGY IN A SMALL VOLUME, A BOMB BY ANY OTHER NAME".