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Tesla Model S Named 2013 World Green Car of the Year

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Luxurious, powerful and laden with cool technology, the Tesla Model S adds yet another accolade to its crowded mantel today by winning the World Green Car of the Year Award at during the New York Auto Show.

Equipped with an 85 kWh battery — the largest available — it is supposed to offer up to 265 miles of range. Power is sent to the rear wheels with up to 443 lb-ft of instantly delivered torque in the performance model.

Aside from its luxury interior appointments and relatively understated style, standout features include its massive touch screen infotainment system the size of two iPads and the ability to update its system through a 3G connection.

2013 New York Auto Show Complete Coverage

That’s especially important with the Model S because it means the company can affect how the car behaves without requiring owners to bring their cars in for service.

Tesla competed against the Renault Zoe – a a five-door electric car – and the Volvo V60 Plug-In Hybrid for the title.

Discuss this story at GasStinks.com

By Luke Vandezande

For $25,000: New or Used? Latest Wide Open Throttle Discusses

For $25,000: New or Used? Latest Wide Open Throttle Discusses

Greg Emmerson of European Car joins the roundtable discussion on this episode of Wide Open Throttle to discuss his recent Head 2 Head comparison of the BMW E30 M3, Scion FR-S, and Volkswagen GTI. Jessi Lang, Jonny Lieberman, Angus MacKenzie, and Ron Kiino also discuss the crowded entry-luxury segment as well as the future of new and existing electric vehicle manufacturers.

Wide Open Throttle 62 25K Sports Cars Entry Luxury Future of EV Makers image 10 300x187 imageDespite the classic BMW’s high cost of entry when it was new and similar performance to the more affordable FR-S, Emmerson defends the E30 M3 and GTI against the rear-drive Scion sports car. Next, the conversation moves to the entry-luxury market with Scion and Mazda wanting to move up and Mercedes-Benz and Audi strengthening their entry-level presence with the CLA and A3 four-doors. After talking about Scion’s original purpose of bringing younger buyers into the Toyota fold and then move them into Toyota and Lexus products, Lieberman questions how the youth brand can move upmarket. The panel then debates what constitutes luxury.

Just a day after Fisker executives were questioned by a government committee about the company’s $529 million loan, the latest Wide Open Throttle video crew discuss the fate of struggling Fisker, profitable Tesla, and newcomer Detroit Electric. Emmerson notes that BMW will soon introduce the i3 and i8 electric vehicles, and wonders how it will affect other mainstream brands as well as the newer EV makers.

Check out the video below to hear the full discussion.

By Jason Udy

Tesla Flagship Store Opens in Canada

Luxury EV maker Tesla opened one of its boutique stores in Canada to the public today, marking the brand’s first location in the country.

The first official store in Canada, the outlet is located in the newly opened wing of the Yorkdale Shopping Center in Toronto, Ontario.

Following the same philosophy as its other 24 storefronts in North America, Tesla isn’t aiming to sell cars to those who happen to wander in during a shopping excursion. Instead, it aims to educate people on electric cars and what it, as an automaker, offers consumers.

A staff is always on hand take grazers through a series of tutorials designed to show what going electric is all about. Tesla sales vice president George Blankenship was on hand today to talk about the company’s current product and the brand’s goals for its flagship Canadian location.

SEE ALSO: Tesla CEO Hints at Electric Truck and Electric Supercar

What’s that goal? Building a brand identity. “95 percent of people don’t know who we are,” he said. That’s exactly what he said Tesla means to combat by opening these locations. “We’ll open another 25 stores this year,” he said. Currently, there are 24 locations in North America, which was the brand’s main focus this year.

“There’s a bit of lighting that happens when you talk to someone in person,” he said while smiling.

But that lightning is raising a few eyebrows in the U.S. where the brand’s primary focus was this year. Complains and lawsuits from the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) rose this year around Tesla’s small, independent storefront strategy. Laws exist in some states to prevent automakers from selling directly to consumers — primarily to protect dealer networks from being squeezed out.

But Tesla doesn’t have a dealer network, and therein lies the argument currently flaring between the two groups. Nevertheless, Blankenship said Tesla isn’t worried about the lawsuit, and quickly pointed out that it won’t be a struggle the brand will face with its new Canadian location.

GALLERY: Tesla Model S

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By Luke Vandezande

How many kindergarteners can you fit in a Tesla Model S?

Kindergarteners cram into a Tesla Model S



Details on where and when this video of a gaggle of kindergarteners packing themselves into a Tesla Model S was shot are slim – we think Phoenix, AZ, based the license plate and this Tesla Motors Club post. Of course, all of that is kind of secondary compared to the obvious fun these kids are having. It’s not a record-setting effort, which is why there’s so much room left over – it’s more of a chance to try and get an entire kindergarten class into one car. As a member posting on the Tesla Motors forum wrote, “We could have fit three more easily, without anyone sitting on top of someone else.”



In any case, it’s pretty adorable, and it has also given us our new favorite phrase: “Frunk Monkeys.” Hazard your own guess as to how many youngsters will fit, then watch the video below to see how many kids can cram into the benchmark electric hatchback below.



By Sebastian Blanco