Tesla Model S updated with new looks, equipment

2016 Tesla Model S facelift 1

Following the introduction of the Model 3 early this month, Tesla has now rolled out the updated version of its Model S. Aside from the new looks, the fully-electric sedan also features an improved equipment list, as well as additional options for the interior.

Focusing on the design, the majority of the Model S’ changes take place at the front. Taking a cue from the Model X and Model 3, the Model S now follows Tesla’s new design language, featuring a revised front end that ditches the faux “grille” (unless you count the tiny slit with the Tesla logo).

The new front fascia could be an attempt to make the Model S more aerodynamically efficient than before (previously 0.24). Wrapping up the list of exterior changes are a pair of new adaptive LED headlamps with 14 three-position LED dynamic turning lights, along with body-coloured front chin spoiler, side skirts and rear valence (black on the outgoing model).

2016 Tesla Model S facelift 3

Inside, the Model S can now be ordered with new options. Aside from two new wood trim types – Dark Ash and Figured Ash – heated/ventilated front seats and a medical-grade HEPA air filter can be specified as well. The latter removes at least 99.97% of contaminants from cabin air. Oh, it also comes with a “bioweapon defence mode,” like in the Model X.

Tag on the Premium Upgrade package and Nappa leather upholstery, an Alcantara headliner, LED ambient lighting and said HEPA air filter will be added to the cabin. A Subzero Weather Package meanwhile, adds heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and heated washer nozzles.

Standard features that are retained here include the Autopilot semi-autonomous driving system, keyless entry and a 17-inch touchscreen that serves as a display for the car’s infotainment system, navigation system, reverse camera, air-con controls and nearly every feature available on the car.

2016 Tesla Model S facelift 6

As for performance, the line-up starts with the base Model S 70 that has a rear axle-mounted electric motor (315 hp/440 Nm), and is capable of hitting 97 km/h from a standstill (0-60 mph) in 5.5 seconds. Moving up the range, the Model S 70D gets an additional electric motor to make it an all-wheel drive vehicle. Each motor provides 259 hp but the overall system output is rated at 328 hp and 525 Nm. Acceleration is 5.2 seconds from 0-97 km/h.

Next up, the Model S 90D adopts the same powertrain configuration as the Model S 70D, but has been made to produce more output – 417 hp and 657 Nm. The 0-97 km/h time is now 4.2 seconds. At the very top is the Model S P90D, which also has a similar all-wheel drive setup, although the rear electric motor now provides 503 hp.

Ludicrous Speed mode is available here and when activated, the system outputs 532 hp and 967 Nm, propelling the car from a standstill to 100 km/h in 2.8 seconds. In “ordinary” mode, power is rated at 463 hp and the aforementioned sprint time is 0.3 seconds slower. Additionally, the Model S now has a 48-amp charger standard — up from 40 amps — which Tesla says will enable faster charging when connected to higher-amp outlets.

GALLERY: Current Tesla Model S 85 in Malaysia

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Gerard Lye

Originating from the corporate world with a background in finance and economics, Gerard’s strong love for cars led him to take the plunge into the automotive media industry. It was only then did he realise that there are more things to a car than just horsepower count.



  • TeslaOwner on Apr 13, 2016 at 12:12 pm

    How about sticking a bigger T emblem on the front and do away with the faux grille?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
    • U mean almighty T badge? Then no need all the safety features cuz can reduce cost and weight. Just like what Sammy said, the T badge will protect from accidents & injuries/death

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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