So are you talking about writing off your S for the business yet? R&D, etc.?
Right now we're wrestling with fabrication design, leather issues, and a bunch of really important things that trump worries about accounting stuff. There'll be time later.
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I'm not going to tilt the phone caddie in the driver's direction for safety reasons. You'd have to take your eyes off the road considerably to read your phone's display, and that wouldn't be safe. If you do need to read the phone's display while driving (NOT recommended, BTW), you'll be able to pull it out of the caddie while its still connected and use it as required.
Hence, international design will be the same as US design (at least as of this moment).
It’s been about three weeks since the last center console insert (CCI) update, so for those who are following progress as we move from sketches to rough prototypes, to fabrication level designs and on to alpha and beta prototypes—another update. (I apologize for the length but many of you asked for detail)
Work on the fabrication design is progressing more rapidly than expected—a very good thing. The fabrication assembly layout has been completed, including full Autocad 3-D renderings of every part. I’ve attached a few 3-D images with brief explanation below.
We’re prototyping the design for our upholstered side panels and should have a finished “look” within a week or two. The CCI frame itself is designed to be fabricated using a unique assembly technique that can only be achieved using laser-cut components. I have exploded fabrication drawings of all parts, and I’d love to share them because they really are cool and many of you are technical. But that info is proprietary, so …
We’re currently working on finalizing certain material and trim choices as well as awaiting the delivery of my Model S (VIN #184, delivery within 7 days) so that we can check fit against Autocad templates. We’ll then build our first fabricated alpha prototype, install it in my car (installation should take about two minutes), recheck all fits, and then begin drive tests checking for rattles, vibration, movement or anything else that might be problematic. Obviously, anything that is discovered will be corrected via design or material tweaks.
Building a Business
On the business front, we’re getting closer to pricing the CCI, but aren’t quite there yet. We’ll have to spec the cost of all base model materials and the incremental cost of any options that may be special ordered, define all fabrication/labor costs, then establish pricing, and then announce.
On the marketing front, we’re developing a company logo (gotta have a logo) and will begin work on a simple website (pre-product release version) this coming week. Once the website is up (I’ll announce it here) we’ll start collecting email addresses from folks who might have interest in the CCI (obviously, no obligation).
Our plan is to have an introductory “signature series” for the CCI. The first 100 orders are signature series CCIs and get a 10 percent discount off the list price (yeah, I know, the CCI signature discount a little different than TM’s signature premium approach ) Still tentative, so more on that later in the month.
For those who may be new to the CCI, it is designed to fit snugly between the existing center channels of the Model S. Its contours and shape follow the shape of the center channels. The CCI is low profile, conforming to the open look of the Model S interior and sitting below the level of the front seats.
The 3-D fabrication renderings that follow show the CCI along with simple representations of its deck elements. The deck is represented in carbon fiber (this will be an option), but it will also be available in black and possibly other finishes. Note that the sides of the CCI are rendered without their upholstery.
The rectangular storage box on the deck of the CCI will have a tambour door (not shown in this rendering) constructed to slide back under the Model S cubby. It will provide approximately 9”L x 5”W x 4.5”D of usable closed storage—enough for most things that you’ll need to keep out of site but still keep near you as you drive. The cup holder is designed for easy driver access (passengers will use the Model S cup holders that come with the vehicle. The phone caddie is approx. 4”W x 2”L x 2.75”D and will allow you to thread your USB connectivity cable through and under the CCI and into the USB ports provided in the Model S.
We’ve come a long way since the first sketches of the CCI appeared last year. And we still have a lot to do, but we’re getting close to a product that I hope some of you will think has merit.
Check here for further updates in a few weeks, including early photos of the alpha prototype in my Model S.
Looks awesome! Hope I can be one of your first 100
Evan E. Fusco, MD--Nixa, MO
Model S R77/VIN-1267-- Black 85kWh (non-perf), Tech, Lacewood trim, tan interior, Sound Studio, Air Suspension, 19" rims, twin chargers, HPWC
Model X Reservation Sequence # 5966 (for the wife)
Strong work Soflauthor! Thanks for the update, looking forward to pricing and your comments after you fit the CCI in your car.
Impressive progress. Can't wait to see it sitting in your car
Very nice work, can't wait to see pics of it installed...I will definitely be buying one just to support your efforts, after months of following the progress here on TMC!
Brilliant! Mahalo for all your hard work.
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