What's the used Tesla Model X hatchback like?
Any car manufacturer with an eye on financial success has an SUV on its fleet these days – so much so that even luxury and sporting brands such as Rolls-Royce, Bentley and Lamborghini all satisfy that particular raised ride-height itch.
Tesla started out producing an electric two-seat roadster that for a number of good reasons failed to win the firm any great financial success, but it didn’t take long to garner attention with its Model S, a large, all-electric executive car that – if you’ll forgive the pun – sparked something approaching a revolution. This led inevitably to the Model X, a 2.5-tonne seven-seat SUV that shares the Model S’s remarkable performance, high price tag and impressive claimed range, as well as most of its underpinnings, but cloaks it all in an on-trend, larger and more practical body.
It’s a big and heavy car. It’s not just the luxury that weighs it down; it’s the batteries – the combined weight of them tips the scales at almost twice as much as a conventional engine and fuel tank. However, the Model X carries all that weight low, so it's good for the centre of gravity, and the car isn’t as tall or as ungainly as many in this class.
As far as power goes, there’s a choice of the entry-level 75D, 100D or super-fast P100D. The entry-level 75kWh motor is smooth, refined and near silent, as you’d expect, and it's quick too. In official tests, it managed a range of 259 miles, although, as with all electric cars, this is likely to be substantially less in the real world; we’d estimate around 150 miles. The 100D is likewise whisper-quiet and comes with the 100kWh motor that we’d expect to top more than 200 miles, despite an official range of nearer 300 miles. The P100D is the full-fat high-performance version, also known as 'Performance Ludicrous', and is able to propel this heavy SUV from a standstill to 62mph in just 2.9sec – faster than the vast majority of supercars. Despite such storming performance, it remains remarkably refined at all speeds.
This being a large and heavy vehicle, you might expect the ride and handling to suffer, but the Model X corners smoothly with little body lean. It’s not much fun, admittedly, but it is safe and stable. On rough surfaces, the ride can thump – perhaps not surprisingly given the enormous 21in wheels fitted – but it’s never uncomfortable.
Inside, the Model X looks suitably modern and luxurious. There’s a good driving position with plenty of electrical adjustment, as well as a comfortable and supportive seat. The dashboard is dominated by a digital instrument display in front of the driver and a huge 17.0in touchscreen that controls nearly every important function in the car. This looks futuristic but can be fiddly to use, especially on the move, and some of the icons are rather small. Alas, while the material quality looks good, there are noticeable areas where the interior feels a little too flexible and there are some gaps where neater shut lines might be expected.
On the matter of space, there’s plenty of it. You can opt for seven seats, and most buyers do, although the two flip-up rearmost seats are perhaps best suited to children. There’s plenty of room in the middle-row seats and access to them is through the spectacular-looking falcon-wing doors that also leave a large area for entry and egress. There are plenty of storage spaces and the boot is a good size in five-seat mode. You can also fold the middle-row seats down flat via a button on the touchscreen.