2013 Tesla Model S

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Key Specs
Our Take
Overview
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
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Key Specs

of the 2013 Tesla Model S. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Stylish design
  • Longer than average EV range
  • Quick acceleration
  • Fast charging
  • Requires no charging hardware
  • Updatability

The Bad

  • Expensive
  • Body roll
  • Low-frequency rumble
  • Skimps on cupholders and cabin storage
  • Limited availability

Notable Features of the 2013 Tesla Model S

  • Extended-range battery-electric car
  • Four-door hatch seats five
  • Two additional seats for children (optional)
  • Three performance levels
  • Eligible for $7,500 tax credit
  • Designed and built in the U.S.

2013 Tesla Model S Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview

The Tesla Model S is the company's second all-electric car. It's a sedan that seats up to seven, with optional jump seats for children. The car is offered with three battery options, each offering more range and power.

New for 2013
All Model S trim levels gain new standard features like 12-way adjustable and heated front seats. An extended warranty that adds additional coverage for four years or 50,000 miles is also available.

Exterior
On the outside, the Model S resembles a mix of a Jaguar and Aston Martin, with pronounced exterior curves. An all-glass panoramic sunroof is available and the sedan's door handles retract into the door itself to reduce aerodynamic drag. Nineteen-inch wheels are standard, while 21-inch wheels are available.

Interior
Inside, the Model S features power-adjustable heated front seats and a 17-inch touch-screen that controls the audio and navigation systems as well as climate and other controls. Simulated leather seating is standard with leather surfaces available.

Under the Hood
Battery options for the Model S are 60-kilowatt-hour or 85 kwh packs. The larger one, Tesla says, provides a range as far as 300 miles. The car is quick, with a zero-to-60-mph time of 5.9 seconds for the base version and 4.2 seconds for a performance-oriented edition.

On a high-amperage 240-volt power outlet the car can replenish range at a rate of 62 miles per hour while a 50 percent charge can be had in 30 minutes when the car is configured to use ...

Vehicle Overview

The Tesla Model S is the company's second all-electric car. It's a sedan that seats up to seven, with optional jump seats for children. The car is offered with three battery options, each offering more range and power.

New for 2013
All Model S trim levels gain new standard features like 12-way adjustable and heated front seats. An extended warranty that adds additional coverage for four years or 50,000 miles is also available.

Exterior
On the outside, the Model S resembles a mix of a Jaguar and Aston Martin, with pronounced exterior curves. An all-glass panoramic sunroof is available and the sedan's door handles retract into the door itself to reduce aerodynamic drag. Nineteen-inch wheels are standard, while 21-inch wheels are available.

Interior
Inside, the Model S features power-adjustable heated front seats and a 17-inch touch-screen that controls the audio and navigation systems as well as climate and other controls. Simulated leather seating is standard with leather surfaces available.

Under the Hood
Battery options for the Model S are 60-kilowatt-hour or 85 kwh packs. The larger one, Tesla says, provides a range as far as 300 miles. The car is quick, with a zero-to-60-mph time of 5.9 seconds for the base version and 4.2 seconds for a performance-oriented edition.

On a high-amperage 240-volt power outlet the car can replenish range at a rate of 62 miles per hour while a 50 percent charge can be had in 30 minutes when the car is configured to use one of Tesla's Superchargers. An adaptive air suspension is available.

Safety
Standard safety features include antilock brakes, an electronic stability system, side-impact airbags for the front seats, side curtain airbags and front knee airbags.


Latest 2013 Model S Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.9)
Performance
(5.0)
Interior Design
(4.8)
Comfort
(4.8)
Reliability
(4.8)
Value For The Money
(4.5)

What Drivers Are Saying

(5.0)

You'll never go back to gas

by Daddyo525 from Chicago, IL on October 7, 2018

Beautiful styling inside and out. Super comfortable a joy to drive. This car is super quick with instant response to the accelerator. Regenerative braking allows for one pedal driving at almost all ... Read full review

(5.0)

Tesla All Electic Vehicle

by Robert S from Las Vegas, NV on October 6, 2018

This is one incredible Car: Very smooth, nice ride, 0 to 60 in 4 seconds, Set the cruise control to 65 and at set speed going up hill, down hill stays at 65. Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2013 Tesla Model S currently has 6 recalls

NHTSA Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2013 Tesla Model S Base

NHTSA rates vehicles using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Overall
5 Star
Overall Front
5 Star
Overall Side
5 Star
Overall Rollover Rating
5 Star
Driver's
5 Star
Passenger's
5 Star
Side Barrier
5 Star
Side Barrier Rating Driver
5 Star
Side Barrier Rating Passenger Rear Seat
5 Star
Side Pole
5 Star
Side Pole Barrier combined (Front)
5 Star
Side Pole Barrier combined (Rear)
5 Star
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. NHTSA provides vehicle safety information such as front- and side-crash ratings and rollover ratings. Vehicles are rated using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Model S received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker