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Sunday, September 23, 2018

Two Years of Tesla Ownership

We've had our Tesla Model X for 2 years now. Last year I detailed the delivery story and a few minor issues here in our 1 year of ownership post. Now at the 2-year mark, I can report that I still love the car. It is so much fun. This is by far the best (and most expensive) car that I've ever owned. The software updates bring improvements and easter eggs that keep the car exciting.

How is the car aging?
We have nearly 25,000 miles on the odometer. With my other cars, I would typically only have 9 or 10 thousand miles per year. I enjoy this can so much that I'm looking for reasons to drive it. I've taken two road trips to San Diego and for a family vacation, we toured the 7 Wonders of Oregon, we traveled to southern Oregon multiple times to visit family, and we've taken it to the coast for beach clean-up events. We've even used bioweapon defense mode while traveling through the smoke of raging forest fires.

After buying a Leaf in 2011, I was hooked on electric and knew that I was never going back to a gas car. However, the Leaf experience left me concerned about battery degradation. Before buying the Model X, I researched Tesla's battery lifespan & degradation and was impressed by graphs like the one below:

Seeing that they have been highly reliable is great, but how is my car doing? Similar to the tracking that I've been doing with our Leaf since 2012, I've been collecting and charting battery data for our Tesla for over a year now. Here's the resulting graph:
The first graph shows degradation based on distance driven, whereas my graph is based on age, but we do know the odometer reading.

2-years, ~25,000 miles ~40,000 km, degradation = 4.3% 

This puts my results inline with others in the first chart. The good news is that degradation seems to significantly slow down after ~5%. Time will tell. Our Leaf never seems to find a spot where the degradation slowed. As the range decreased, the demands on the battery capacity grew and with it so did the degradation this caused. The Tesla, on the other hand, has far more capacity and a far better thermal management system. Next year's 3-year report will be telling.