Things I don’t like about the Tesla

So I’m writing an article about the Tesla Roadster for the spring issue of the magazine and I’m having a difficult time finding anything good to say about it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m super pleased that I get to write about it and I’m equally excited that’s going to be the featured auto piece, it’s just a car I fundamentally hate. Here’s the deal:

The concept of an alternative energy powered car is nothing new. First of all, nobody ever liked paying for gas, even when it cost less than a buck a gallon. The other thing is since we’ve been this plucky, advanced society, we’ve always looked for new ways to implement our new technology into our everyday lives. For the most part, we’ve been successful. Everybody got a refrigerator after WWII, for starters. speaking of the war, a great example of instituting new methods of propulsion is the jet engine. that came about and they immediately went to work attaching them to planes, for obvious reasons. you better believe that someone tried sticking them on cars, which clearly never developed outside of the odd mechanic with a lot of spare time and, disturbingly, a spare jet.

I dare mention the Ford Nucleon, a car that would have destroyed a lot more than the climate.

Since we’re a society that’s clearly adopted electricity to power everything, it’s not hard to imagine that people would want to make our cars run on it too. I’ll even go so far as to say its not a bad idea. what I don’t like is the extra baggage attached to the concept. Those who want electric cars don’t want them simply for what they are, they want them because they hate conventional cars for some reason or another. For one person, it’s the environment, for the other is it’s the car’s fault we’re dependent on foreign resources. I don’t fault this reasoning. I think these are perfectly valid arguments that should be openly discussed. the thing that bothers me is that these opinions primarily come from a population of people who morally despise the car.

These people don’t think the car should be enjoyed, basically. they think that the car shouldn’t be anything than a method to go from point A to point B. There should be no reason to have high performance automobiles that go incredibly fast, as fast is dangerous and so on.

To me, these people are dead. And I don’t mean that in a corny, mafioso kind of way. I picture these people sitting in a pea green family room eating a “perfectly acceptable” bread pudding, daring never to experience the zest of a single cheeto. This mentality isn’t the way to lead your existence. Everything can’t be “bad”. Yes, there’s a line, and we have legal and spiritual guidelines to help us along the way, but those are in place essentially to make sure we don’t hurt ourselves and each other while we’re out there living. And when I say out there living, I don’t mean doing what we need to do solely so we can sit there and continue to breathe for our allotted time. That’s called a Tree.

I’m talking about enjoying ourselves, doing things that excite us and make ourselves happy. We’re all here, on earth, existing for one reason or another with no instructions as to our general purpose, so we make our own: we make the time we have enjoyable and do what we can so the next lot that comes by can do the same. hey, it’s the least we can do.

Part of that is taking what we have and know and improving it. we run, so we try to run faster. we eat and drink, so we try to make food and drink more enjoyable. We have art because we found that we can make things we like to look at and listen to, so we make more. We made this thing called the car, and it’s fun, so we try to make them go faster because we can, and we should. Of course a lot of it is dangerous and of course it’s scary, but these are poor reasons to not do something. Just ask anyone who’s ever accomplished anything. And I do mean anything.

I’ve said all this because the main reason why I dislike the Tesla so much is because it isn’t just another way to have a car to be fast and enjoyable, it’s fuel for the argument. What should be a welcome addition to the automotive world, or at the very least a middle ground for the environmentalist and auto enthusiasts, is basically a way for those of ill intent to get rid of the conventional car. People will continue to make others think the internal combustion engine is a “bad” thing on a moral level, they’ll hold the Tesla up as an example and say “here’s a way to do all the things other cars do without being ‘bad’.” everyone will then turn on the car as we know it, forgetting all the happiness and success it brought us for the past 100 years.

I don’t mind alternative methods of doing things. I don’t mind alternative thinking and opinions on issues, either. What I don’t like is making who we are and what we do morally reprehensible, and the Tesla’s the brainchild of people who think they’re better than everyone. It’s the attitude embodied in the Imac ad campaigns as well.

The Tesla Roadster isn’t here to make the automotive world better, it’s here to be a dick.

2 Responses to “Things I don’t like about the Tesla”

  1. 1 melissa celeste navia
    January 7, 2008 at 8:24 PM

    changing something that has been in place for a century is clearly going to be a tumultuous endeavor, but I think it’s a good thing that we’re working on this how-to-power-a-car-without-fuel dilemma now and not ten years from now… in the long run, the kinks will be worked out, the loud, obnoxious people will quiet down, and a new, better car for a new, better era will emerge… after all the first Ford ever built wasn’t a California (GT/CS) Mustang, now was it?


  2. 2 the yayster
    January 23, 2008 at 4:21 PM

    i think the car is nice looking. that was good example of people never daring to eat a cheeto. id eat the cheeto. happily.

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