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The Tesla Model S somehow managed to get the first and second positions on Consumer Reports’ list of “Best Cars of 2015”


If you thought that the love story between Consumer Reports and Tesla was over, you were wrong. The magazine published a top 10 list of the cars it tested in 2015 and the Tesla Model S somehow managed to get the first and second positions.

Consumer Reports lists the “Tesla Model S” as the second best car tested and the “Tesla Model S P85D” as the first. It is the only vehicle with two different versions on the list – both Mercedes and Audi have two cars on the list, but they are different models (E250-S550 and  A8-A6).

The product review magazine announced earlier this year that its ratings system had to be modified because the P85D scored 103 out of 100. After changing the system, Tesla’s all-wheel drive performance vehicle achieved a perfect score of 100.

But just a few weeks later, the magazine stopped recommending the Model S because it scored below average on its reliability survey. Tesla CEO Elon Musk quickly took to Twitter to defend the company and said that most issues have been addressed and highlighted that by Consumer Reports’ own survey, 97% of Model S owners say they would definitely buy the Model S again.

And now there is this “The Best Cars of 2015” list, which is based on overall road test score

“Two Teslas on our Best of 2015 list? You betcha.”

Earlier this year, Consumer Reports tested a Model S with a MSRP of $89,650, which could be a well-equipped Model S 85. Later in the year, the magazine tested a Model S P85D.

The magazines tested two versions of the Model S separately this year and they both bested every other vehicle on the road test, which would explain why they are both on the list.

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  1. MorinMoss - 7 years ago

    I still think Tesla has a lot of work to do on improving the reliability & performance consistency of their cars.
    But I’m perplexed that so many think they’re simply not capable of doing so.

    • dan - 7 years ago

      Do you say that as an owner or as someone who reads things about the cars online? The reason I ask, as an owner, is because I have not seen such reliability or performance inconsistencies and I can say that the people I know who are also owners would agree.

      • Nicolai Imset - 7 years ago

        I am also an owner for over two years now. And while I have not had any serious issues I know many that has had serious issues with their cars.

        Of the 7 I kniw that ordered around the same time, 3 had their cars bought back by Tesla due to issues. (2 of the 3 bought new Teslas)

        Admittedly these are cars built in 2013 and as far as I know quality has improved since then.

      • MorinMoss - 7 years ago

        I’m not (yet) an owner. I’m waiting a year or so to see what the Model 3 has to offer, what the competition comes up with or if to buy a Model S 2ndhand.
        At this point, I can’t justify a brand-new Model S.
        I have seen some complaints on the Tesla Motor Club forums but am not terribly concerned. Those who are satisfied are extremely happy with their purchase.
        However, when you’re the new player and all eyes are on you, you simply have to be better – that’s just how it works.
        And since Tesla is the poster child for vehicle electrification and IS the company that really got us all talking about BEVs, they HAVE to be better, all the time until EVs are mainstream.

      • Nathanael - 7 years ago

        As an owner, I’ll say that Tesla’s quality standards are not up to Toyota’s “never take into the shop” standards, but are way better than Audi’s “You need to replace your axles again” standards.

  2. Eric Diebold - 7 years ago

    Personally, as a Tesla Models S P85D owner since March, I’ve found the car’s reliability to be good but not perfect. The squeaky glass pano-roof was fixed quickly and thoroughly by a local Tesla service center along with an exterior trim piece that had become loose. Beyond these two minor annoyances, this car has far exceeded my every expectation.

  3. JimGord - 7 years ago

    While they are at it Consumer Reports needs to list every 100% fossil fueled vehicle, including hybrids without a plug as “Hazardous to the Environment – which they all are. If there are 3 Plug Ins in a segment, all other vehicles in the segment should be disqualified. If there are less than 3 Plug ins in a segment then ONLY vehicles in the top 10th percentile should be considered for a satisfactory or higher rating.

    If the biosphere is to be saved it is all hands on deck and the current car culture of excessive fossil horsepower, excessive weight and excessive number of tailpipes has to be changed. As part of this culture change to save the planet

    Consumers Reports have to step up their game.and be part of the solution. Now

    • MorinMoss - 7 years ago

      I think they prefer not to pick sides but to evaluate product quality, performance & reliability according to accepted standards.

  4. styxmiko - 7 years ago

    with all due respect to the writer of the article, when the title reads that Tesla “somehow managed” it implies that it’s some kind of a miracle or mistake that Tesla made it to the first two top positions…
    The car made it in two separate categories and made it because it deserved it, and actually I expected it to make it, because Tesla is a very good if not the best car company in existence.


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