There was an episode of British favorite car show, Top Gear, recently where the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) ended up being sued as a result of a stunt pulled by front man (and eternally bad dresser) Jeremy Clarkson.
Clarkson took it upon himself to drive the roadster; an electric car from electric car ‘masters’ Tesla. Ultimately, the show focused on the vehicle running out of juice during a race. Tesla hit back hard, claiming the show had been ‘faked’.
A little closer to home it appears the same scenario is playing out and with the same company. Tesla’s Model S car was driven by journo John M Broder for a review piece he was undertaking on the vehicle.
Broder took a trip from DC into New England and the highlight of the piece when it was completed seemed to be that Broder had to call out a recovery truck as the car had ran out of power regardless of how many and how ‘well-spaced’ the charging points were.
In terms of numbers, Tesla claims the Model S can be driven for around two hundred and sixty-five miles before it needs a recharge. As a result of this, the manufacturer has put the charging points at around every two hundred miles. Despite this, Broder still claims the car ran out of power before he could get to the next fast-charging point.
Not surprisingly, Tesla are not happy about Broder’s claims and are hotly disputing them. In addition, CNN sent a couple of car journos on exactly the same route as Mr Broder undertook and they managed to complete the distance AND have an excess ninety-odd miles of range left-over. So how on earth did Broder run out of power? If he did at all?
The suggestion has been made that the speed at which Broder drove may well have something to do with this anomaly. Broder originally said in his review that cruise control was in the region of around fifty-four miles an hour. Data from the car manufacturer however, seemed to indicate that Broder drove at speeds of sixty-five and over for the majority of the journey, sometimes as fast as eighty.
Do we have another lawsuit approaching?