I gather that the prize is yet to be determined. Kind of makes a difference whether the prize is $10,000 or a cap with "400 miles" written on it. I would not drive for ten hours at 40 mph in order to win a cap. Actually, I would not drive 400 miles just in the hopes of maybe, but probably not, winning any prize at all. But that's just me. And anyway, you'll have to be one of the very first in line even to have a chance. Someone will probably do it on June 22 or 23, with or without a prize. For at least the next year there'll be an informal contest to see who can set the new distance record.
If the prize has significant monetary value, someone will probably try to cheat. I like the idea of a nice-looking but cheap plaque to everyone who manages to drive 400 miles without charging. Though it would encourage abusing the battery by unnecessarily charging to full and driving to empty.
Actually, between 15 and 20 mph even the Roadster will do just over 400 miles. So doing 400 in the Model S will be a simple matter of driving very slowly. Maybe 30 or 35 mph with the larger battery pack in the S. That really wouldn't mean anything at all, other than your willingness to spend 12 or 15 hours driving very slowly. Maybe the "prize" should just be an honorable mention on the Tesla web site for the first person to turn in vehicle logs demonstrating a 400-mile run.
^ Isn't "abusing" somewhat OTT in that context. EV's are designed to be driven and recharged after all.....
Prize could be a free battery upgrade. The 500 mile pack that Elon says could be done now but which would be too pricey?
Anyway, I've changed my viewpoint: All you need to do to drive 400 miles is drive 20 or 25 mph for 16 to 20 hours. So the first customer willing to do that will win the prize. Won't prove anything. Maybe they should make it a race instead. Whoever can drive 400 miles in the least amount of time. Make it a traveling trophy. You get to keep it until your record is broken.
^ It would only take one attempt. Ergo, no battery abuse.
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