Tesla's latest driving mode is an about-turn from its previous options, which were all about squeezing the optimal performance from its cars. The new "chill" setting makes for a "gentler ride," according to the manufacturer. That sounds like an odd upgrade from an EV maker that was once obsessed with cracking the fastest acceleration time, motivated by its rivalry with Faraday Future. It achieved that milestone earlier this year (after dropping the "Ludricous" easter egg), when the Tesla Model S P100D became the quickest car to 60 MPH. All those boring folk can tap chill mode for "smoother" and "more gradual" acceleration.
Tesla has been on a pink slip rampage this month, firing between 400 to 700 people from its automotive branch. Its solar panel subsidiary, SolarCity, also plans to let go more than 200 employees by the end of October. Former employees estimate that dismissals at SolarCity and Tesla have affected around 1,200 people in total--Tesla itself refuses to disclose the exact number. If the estimates are correct, though, this would account for around 3.6 percent of its global workforce.
Tesla Motors Inc. on Wednesday cut the starting price of its Model X to 74,000 for a more limited-range version of its sport utility vehicle as the electric carmaker tries to boost sales. The new Model X 60D has a range of 200 miles, compared with 237 miles for its prior entry-level version, the 75D. Top-level versions of the Model X, which have added range and faster acceleration, can cost more than 100,000. With the 60D, customers have "the flexibility to choose the Tesla model, price point and range that best fits their lifestyle," Tesla said. The price cut follows Tesla's report this month that its second-quarter global deliveries of 14,370 -- including 4,625 Model X vehicles -- fell short of expectations.
Elon Musk is getting ready to announce a new product -- but he's not giving many clues about what it might be. On Sunday morning, the Tesla CEO sent out a tweet about a "product unveiling" on Oct. 17. So what is this new Tesla product, which, according to Musk, will be "unexpected by most?" SEE ALSO: Elon Musk: Is his Mars Shot impossible or inspired? Is it a new Tesla model? While that product might be a mystery, it's pretty clear that Musk will reveal a new solar rooftop at the Tesla/SolarCity event on Oct. 28.
New Tesla owners in China will no longer enjoy free supercharging for life, Tesla China announced in a post on their local blog. Tesla China says the proceedings of the new fee will be used to expand the supercharger network. The fee applies to owners of the Model S, Model X, and the upcoming Model 3. Owners of cars ordered after January 15 will have to pay 1.8 yuan ($0.26) per kWh. To ease the pain Tesla grants owners a free 400 kWh of supercharging credits per year, which is good value for around 1,600 kilometers of driving. Owners will only start paying after the 400 kWh has been fully used, and they will be billed via their account on Tesla's website.