June 13, 2016 marks the third anniversary of owning and driving a Model S from Tesla. I picked it up on a warm, bright afternoon in 2013 from the Grand avenue showroom in Chicago. I boarded a commuter train close to my North Shore suburban home just before noon and pulled into Union Station less than an hour later. Yes, I took a day off work. A short cab ride put me at the glass front door of the Tesla facility.
I was beyond excited, but also a little apprehensive. I was about to transition from the familiar internal combustion vehicles into a vastly different world of transportation. Was I making a mistake? What if it would be a bust in a year, or even less? Man, that’s a lot of money for a car. A tiny voice in compartment deep inside my brain said, “leave now.” I didn’t.
Almost everything about buying, owning and driving a car from Tesla is vastly different from any other car experience I have ever had. The entire buying process was done online, including selecting options, placing the down payment and electronically reviewing and signing all the necessary documents.
Ok. The transaction details are all complete. All that’s left is to drive away. And drive away I did.
Let’s just say that there is nothing like driving a Model S. I bought the 12,807th Model S off the Fremont, California assembly line. Because I was early on I got some things included that are now options; premium lighting, headliner fabric for starters. My dash has the wood grain going vertical. Soon after they changed it to horizontal. Small items for sure, but still, my Model S stands out.
No I don’t have summon or autonomous driving. I really don’t care. I do wish I had 4-wheel drive, but I’m doing fine, even in the Chicago winters.
Gas stations, oil changes, maintenance and worry are not in my vocabulary, having been replaced with miles of smiles.