Tesla's Model S has become the first electric vehicle to win the Motor Trend Car of the Year award and the first car to win via a unanimous decision.
The Tesla Model S has this week been voted Car of the Year in US automotive publication Motor Trend's 2013 version of the annual award, beating out competition from Porsche, BMW, Lexus and Subaru and becoming the first electric car to win the award in the process.
Aimed squarely at the premium sedan market where quality, comfort, space and performance are all prerequisites to entry, the Model S offers the immediate acceleration of an electric engine with the 50:50 weight distribution of a sports car for perfect balance. What's more, because the motor and battery pack are built into the floor of the vehicle, the center of gravity is much lower, further improving performance and handling.
Issues of range anxiety -- the fear that the battery will die on the freeway -- are kept to a minimum with an 85KWh battery pack that can deliver over 200 miles (more than 320 km) between charges and, because electric motors don't need a transmission tunnel or other mechanical parts, there is not only much more space in the cabin than in a gas engine equivalent, there are also luggage trunks front and back.
Of the award, Elon Musk, Tesla Motors co-founder and CEO said: "Our aspiration with the Model S was to show that an electric car truly can be better than any gasoline car, which is a critical step towards the widespread adoption of sustainable transport. Nothing illustrates this more clearly than winning Motor Trend's Car of the Year by unanimous decision against a field of exceptional competitors."