Tesla has made an announcement that the Model S‘ Long Range Plus variant has an official EPA-rated range of 402 miles (647 km), representing a nearly 20% increase in range when compared to a 2019 Model S 100D with the same 100 kWh battery pack. With this, Tesla claims to be the first carmaker to build a 400-mile electric vehicle.
To achieve the increased range, Tesla claims to have made a number of changes. To begin with, the engineers have cut down the weight wherever possible utilizing the learnings from Model 3 and Model Y manufacturing. Additional weight savings come from in-house designed seats and usage of lightweight materials for the battery pack and drive units.
In addition, the new and standard ‘Tempest’ aero wheels (featured above) are claimed to reduce drag compared to the previous wheels on Model S Long Range, and when paired with new custom tires specifically engineered to reduce rolling resistance, add a 2% improvement to overall range.
More improvements include replacing the mechanical oil pump in the rear AC induction motor with an electric oil pump that reduces friction, and improvements to the gearbox in the front motor resulting in a further increase of 2% more range while driving on the highway.
Furthermore, the Model S gets a new ‘Hold’ feature that blends the motor’s regenerative braking with physical brakes. To make the stopping even more smoother, the regenerative braking now works at a lower speed and deceleration rate, sending more energy back to the battery pack.