No matter how you spin it, the Tesla story is impressive. First entering the spotlight in 2013 when the Model S was unveiled, Tesla has become a rightful competitor to established American automakers like Ford, Chevrolet, and Dodge. Since then, the company has set a slew of company and national records. The Model 3 became the world’s best-selling electric vehicle (EV) worldwide in 2019. Tesla’s annual deliveries increased by nearly 36% year-over-year in 2020. Finally, the company’s market cap outperformed any other manufacturer in 2020.
If you’ve ever considered owning a Tesla, you’re not alone. From fuel efficiency to futuristic technology, it’s safe to assume that Tesla will continue to edge out some of the other competition as EV adoption only increases. In fact, electric car sales surpassed 2.1 million globally in 2019 to boost the total stock to 7.2 million. That accounts for 2.6% of global car sales, about 1% of global car stock in 2019, and a 40% year-on-year increase.
So, are Teslas worth it?
The truth is only you can answer this question in the long run. However, to help you decide if purchasing a Tesla is the right fit for you, we’ve broken down some important topics such as safety ratings, purchase price, and maintenance costs.
How much do Teslas cost?
The current lineup of Tesla vehicles consists of four models—Model 3, Model S, Model X, and Model Y—each of which starts at different price points. However, their costs continue to fluctuate. One explanation? Simple supply and demand. As supply begins to meet demand, costs will only decrease. To that extent, the company offered the following statement in 2019: “We are also adjusting our pricing in order to continue to improve affordability for customers. Like other car companies, we periodically adjust pricing and available options.”
In May 2020, Tesla cut prices on several of their vehicles yet again. Both the Model S and Model X saw a $5,000 base model decrease, to $74,990 and $79,990, respectively. And the Standard Range Plus Model 3, Tesla’s most affordable option, saw a $2,000 decrease to $37,990 (all Model 3s saw a similar $2,000 drop). The Model Y, which sits at $49,990 for its base model, however, remained unchanged. As with most cars, it’s important to check the current prices of each model before you purchase.
Do Teslas really save on fuel?
You might be saying to yourself, “Sure, a Tesla can carry a heavy price tag—but think about all the money I’ll save on gas!” According to Nerd Wallet, when all is said and done, you can expect net savings (taking into account the electricity costs of charging your Tesla vehicle) of between $810 and $890 per year assuming you drive an estimated 15,000 miles per year. After a few years, you’re looking at an extra couple thousand bucks!
The benefits of electric cars
Many Tesla owners take pride in the reduced emissions and lower carbon footprint that Teslas can offer. By investing heavily in raising awareness about these vehicles and what they can mean to consumers and the environment, Tesla can be credited for a good deal of the rising popularity of EV.
But Teslas are nearly in a class by themselves—and the increased demand for EVs isn’t the result of a single issue. Instead, it’s the combined effect of a variety of factors that appeal to different segments of the population. In addition to their environmental impact, their sleek appearance stands out when compared to many other EV models on the road today. Here are some other reasons why people are considering electric vehicles more often:
- Wider availability of charging centers, improving their convenience
- Improved technology
- Innovative styling
- A desire to do better for the planet
Performance features of Teslas
It’s important to remember that all models may not have the same performance features, so make sure to ask your Tesla dealer when you’re looking at a specific model. However, there are some safety features in the new Tesla vehicles (like “track mode” in the new Model 3 Performance version) that have a lot of Tesla enthusiasts excited.
What is track mode? It allows the car to drive and perform more like “custom racers”, according to Fortune. The new version of the Model 3 also features dual-motor all-wheel drive, clearly defining it as a performance vehicle and surpassing expectations of former sports sedan powerhouses like the BMW 3-series and Audi A5. While it may not be ready for endurance racing, it’s sure to enhance your enjoyment of your daily commute to the office.
Safety features of Teslas
The 2016 fatal crash involving a driverless Tesla vehicle called into doubt some claims that installing the Autopilot’s Autosteer function in Tesla vehicles will reduce crash rates by 40 percent (at least as far as the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) is concerned). The agency believes the prior investigation didn’t properly investigate how effective the technology was for preventing accidents and that further investigation is warranted.
However, Drive Mag has reported that Tesla cars are actually some of the safest in all categories. They’ve earned five-star safety ratings in all subcategories by the NHTSA and receiving superior ratings from the IIHS for front crash prevention. That doesn’t make it perfect, however, as the Model 3 was cited for having poor braking and the Model S for having poor headlights.
Tesla cars do offer some of the most advanced safety and autonomous driving features available today, making them highly attractive to consumers. Unfortunately, there are too few of these cars currently on the road to properly assess the difference they’re making. As we start to see more vehicles with advanced safety technology and even autonomous driving features, the hope is we’ll see fewer people severely injured or killed in auto accidents.
How much does it cost to insure a Tesla?
Teslas can be more expensive to insure. As a rule of thumb, the higher the price tag, the more it costs to insure—and Teslas are no exception. Because these EVs consist of expensive parts, and aluminum bodies, potential repair costs can result in higher car insurance prices. However, the total costs of insuring a Tesla vehicle will vary greatly, depending on factors, such as:
- The model and trim you select
- Your driving history
- Your geographic location
- The coverage you choose
As EV car manufacturers like Tesla step up their initiatives, car insurance companies like Elephant now reward car owners who drive cars with new safety technology by providing discounts. It’s simple. If you’re choosing to prioritize safety when buying a car, then we think you should be rewarded on your insurance premiums.
So, are Teslas worth it to you? Learn more about insuring a Tesla with Elephant Insurance? Get a quote today.