Some of you may recall last summer's thread where I posted that my son had made a parody video of the "10 Things to Love About Model S" video done by Konstantin Othmer, one of the original 10 Model S owners.
And some of you may also recall that George mentioned the video in a blog post, and that Tesla was bringing Devon and me down for a factory tour.
Well, last weekend finally arrived and we made the journey to San Francisco. What trip of a lifetime it was! I expanded the tour group to include the rest of my family and parents, and had joked that we'd need a Model X to transport all 6 of us down to the factory from the City. Imagine our surprise when 2 Model Ss showed up to whisk us down. Totally blew me away.
I know many have experienced this already, but a couple of notes: These cars are simply amazing to ride in (and to drive -- they let me drive on the way back!!). We saw a Signature Red out in the wild pass us on the Bay Bridge, and at stop lights we had several cars roll down windows and ask us what we were driving. Lots of "thumbs up" waves. One guy rolled down his window and hollered out "That is the most sexy car I've ever seen". Pretty much everywhere the Model Ss were the center of attention...and that was BEFORE the Monday Car of the Year announcement.
The factory tour was amazing. So much activity, and cars around everywhere. You get a sense of the complexity of supply chains, of the highly mechanized and automated manufacturing process, and the overriding commitment to quality exemplified everywhere you look. And that they are only using a small part of that factory -- lots of room to grow.
We saw an owner taking delivery -- it was great to see him pull out with a big huge Tesla smile on his face. At the end of our tour at least 6 more cars were queued up for factory delivery the next day.
When it didn't seem like it could get any better, they let me drive back to San Francisco. Wow. I'd done a Get Amped drive, but this was nearly an hour long, some of it stop and go, some of it wide open freeway. All of it pure excitement (with a healthy dose of fear, after all, what's a farmboy doing driving the freeways of California?). Makes the wait for Cdn Sig #111 that much harder...
After our dinner that night, after a day of experiencing the most modern transportation possible, for contrast we made our way back to the hotel using one of the oldest mechanized modes of transportation:
Cable cars are fun too, but they are no Model S.
So thanks so much Tesla, Shanna, Sean, and John for looking after us so well during our time with you. You set a very high bar for hospitality, and have cemented our family's brand loyalty. We have only one complaint though -- our sons have both decided they want to work at Tesla. Looks like more trips to San Francisco may be in our future!
PS: My dad was wearing a Tesla hat during our weekend stay, and while at breakfast in the middle of San Fran someone stopped at our table and said they worked at the Tesla factory. Their big smiles and hints telegraphed to me that while working there is intense, quality is very high and the ramp up will continue unabated. Good news, esp for a Canadian whose car is likely to be made very very soon.
PPS: Just to add to the Tesla-ness of the weekend, a friend of a friend invited us to take his Tesla Roadster out for a spin as well. That thing is fun. Raw, somewhat primitive power. But having driven both Teslas for about an hour a day apart, my somewhat sexist analogy is that the Roadster is a wild one that's fun to run around with, but the S is the refined beauty you bring home to introduce to your mother.
These guys put the "Grin" in Tesla Grin...