9. 2013 Tesla
(TSLA) Model S
Miles per gallon equivalency: 94 city, 97 highway, 95 combined.
Electric charge range: 200 miles
OK, tech geeks, if you're done foaming at the mouth over that New York Times test drive and laying palm branches at the feet of Elon Musk, maybe we can have an honest discussion about this car.
Aside from one guy's experiences in between the two supercharging stations along the Northeast Corridor in the dead of winter, here's what we know: The Model S is a technical marvel that not only gives drivers 200 miles of range on a full charge, but has a diagnostic system that can gauge every variable that's influencing the life of that charge.
Features include a 17-inch touchscreen control center, a sound system with enough memory for 500 songs and options including navigation, a high-definition backup camera, a power liftgate and a communications and emergency response system. Add-ons can boost the Model S' sound system to a 12-speaker beast and upgrade the passenger compartment with a rear-facing back seat that gives it room for seven. The other thing we know? Even with a rebate, it's really expensive and requires an update to a $62,000 model to get the vehicle's best range, acceleration and charging options. It's an electric luxury car that will never change the world for the majority of Americans who can't afford it.
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