Elon Musk is a pretty busy dude. He's launching space ships and open sourcing all kinds of electric car technology. He's tweeting a lot. He's employing veterans left and right. And somehow, he still has time to read the local newspaper.
This weekend, two Tesla owners from New York placed an advertisement in the Palo Alto Daily News and the Palo Alto Weekly. (Tesla is based in Palo Alto.) Overall, they seem pretty pleased with the car, but they did have a few suggested improvements. And Musk took notice.
Ad taken out in Palo Alto Daily by two Model S owners is right. Many of the suggestions will be implemented soon. pic.twitter.com/cF43PvJDgQ— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 23, 2014
Having test driven the car, I would agree the cup holder is a little awkward. Perhaps their most dead on critique is the touch screen. The long screen could use a bit more width, increasing the size of action buttons like "Call." While these cosmetic issues are minor and reasonable requests, Will Oremus over at Slate points to a larger issue the letter does not address: price.
The 2014 Tesla Model S runs for just under $70,000, the price of a top-end luxury vehicle. Oremus points to a price point of $35,000 as much more accessible to the average driver. However, cutting the cost is no easy task. Musk replied to Oremus' valid cost critique:
@WillOremus That has been my goal from the beginning. Need the Gigafactory for Model 3.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 25, 2014
While price is certainly the most important change Tesla could make, I have a simpler request for Mr. Musk. Can you make this thing in matte black? The design of the Model S is great on its own, but I want the option of making it look like a Dark Knight Batmobile.