I did an AMA because I feel that there are still some misconceptions about Tesla and their car and their stock. Without further ado, here's my story:

I started investing in Tesla in November of last year when the stock was $30-$35. Now the stock is around $165 and I have gotten the car about 6 weeks ago and it has about 4,000 miles on it. Before I had an Infiniti G35, and would never have thought of buying a car over $35,000. But after following the stock and reading the articles daily and then finally investing and learning how to play with options, I was able to afford a Tesla Model S. Ask me about the car, the stock, the company, or anything at all. I'm ready to answer.

Edit: rate of questions slowed down, so my rate of checking will slow down as well, don't be offended if I take longer.

Comments: 269 • Responses: 64  • Date: 

imapiloticanfly1240 karma

How much has your electric bill increased since buying the tesla?

32no76 karma

I have driven the car for 6 weeks, I have 4,000 miles on it and it costs me about 4-5 cents per mile driven. Taking the 5 cent number, and approximately 667 miles per week, my electric bill per month would be $33.35*4=$133.40. So I pay $133.40 more per month. As opposed to paying $493 for gasoline per month.

SlimyMango11 karma

$493, wow!!! You must have a long commute!

32no13 karma

I drive 44 miles round trip for work, add 10 miles because I sometimes drive to other places, and during the summer I go 130 miles on Fridays to the Poconos, and go back 130 miles on Sundays.

kakashi181421 karma

What is your favorite part of the Model S?

32no58 karma

The ungodly acceleration makes me feel like I'm a teenager again. Also, having only 2 buttons in the interior and having everything controlled from the touchscreen combined with the streamlined and quiet interior makes it truly a relaxing car (when you aren't flooring it).


I dont know a thing about these cars, are they that fast?

32no58 karma

They aren't fast, they are quick. The car has a top speed of 133 mph and goes 0-60 in 4.2 seconds which is fast for a 5-7 seat sedan with 32 cubic feet of luggage space between the front trunk and the back one. The car has the lowest rate of injury from NHTSA, and is among 3 cars that are safety rated 5 stars in every category. Consumer Reports rated the car 99/100 and Automobile magazine gave Tesla the Automobile of the year award. Also Motor trend gave them Car of the year award for 2013. This car has a very minimalist interior with a 17 inch screen that controls everything and there are only 2 buttons outside of the screen. The car handles very well for its weight as well and it is very quiet since it is electric. There is a $7,500 tax rebate from the federal government for each car, and you pay about 5 cents to drive a mile, which is about 1/4 of what you would pay for gas. Also you save on maintenance because the car has very little parts that can break or need to be replaced. The car starts at $70k and goes up to $120k and competes very well with cars in its price range.

temp0ra2 karma

I watched a video of the interior of the Tesla for the first time today. Looks pretty wicked! My only concern would be the video footage of the rear camera constantly on. Are you able to turn it off? Also, did you find it hard to adjust to the touch screen controls of the interior control panel?

32no3 karma

The touchscreen controls are very intuitive and were easy to adapt to. I love having an uncluttered dashboard. Also, the rear view camera turns on when you put the car in reverse or click on Camera on the dashboard. If the car is on, as long as you do not have the Camera tab open, or you are not in reverse, the camera is off (More accurately, it is on standby).

boredguy123 karma

how easy is it to see the touch screen during bright daylight? and/or having a glare on the screen?

32no5 karma

Absolutely no problems seeing the screen.

Nushens2 karma

having everything controlled from the touchscreen

I always assumed this was a cool idea but terrible in practice. The lack of tactile response would force me to have to stare at the screen instead of the road just for basic task. Do you feel it's been safely implemented into your driving habits?

32no1 karma

Yes it has, and many of the controls on the touchscreen are on the steering wheel.

RowBoatCop120 karma

How much did it cost? It's coming to Australia next year but has a possible $100,000 - $200,00 price tag.

32no19 karma

Here are the costs of the base models: 60 kwh costs $71,070 85 kwh costs $81,070 85 kwh Performance costs $91,070

Colors Solid colors (black, white) $0 Metallic colors (Silver, Blue, Green, Gray, Brown) $750 Multicoat colors (Red, Pearl White) $1,500

Roof and Wheels: Body color roof: $0 Black rood: $0 Panoramic sunroof: $2,500 19" wheels: $0 19" (Aero, Cyclone) wheels: $2,500 21" (Silver,Grey) turbine wheels: $4,500

Interior: Textile seats: $0 Standard Leather seats/dash (Black, grey, tan): $1,500 Performace leather seats/dash (Black, grey, tan): $2,500 Piano black inserts: $0 (matching yacht floor add $500) Second tier inserts (Obeche matte, Obeche gloss, Lacewood): $650 (add $650 for matching yacht floor) Carbon Fiber inserts: $800 (add $500 for matching yacht floor)

Packages: Performance Plus Package: $6,500 Carbon Fiber Spoiler: $1,500 High Power Wall Connector: $2,700 Supercharging (Included in 85kwh models): $2000 Tech Package: $3,500 Smart air suspension: $2,250 Parking sensors: $500 Fog Lamps: $500 Sound Package: $2,500 Extended Nappa Leather trim: $2,500 Alcontera headliner: $1,500 Rear facing jump seats: $2,500 Premium lighting: $1,000 Weather package: $750 Parcel shelf: $250 Paint armor: $950

Note: This is after the price increase

samtheclam76013 karma

Do you ever live in fear of your battery running out on the freeway? What would you do if that happened? AAA?

32no23 karma

No, at 306 watts per mile, you can go 248 miles in a full charge, and then the dashboard will show 0 miles left for about 17 more miles before the car turns off. I try to plan in a charging stop using or the plugshare app if I travel more than 220 miles. Otherwise its really convenient to just plug in at home and not have to look for a good gas station, because I almost never travel 220 miles without stopping somewhere I can charge up the car. Also, there is a roadside assistance number in the manual.

Renholder5x7 karma

How long does it take to charge?

32no9 karma

From my other comment in the thread:

My home charger (Nema 1450): 9 hours from 0 miles left There is an option of a high power wall connector that charges in 5 hours from 0 miles The superchargers gives 200 miles of charge in 30 minutes (from 0) And just for kicks, a standard charger that you charge your phone on would take 46 hours if you have a completely depleted battery and you are charging to 100%. I never charge to 100% because I Tesla told me that charging to 80% is better for the life of the battery. I would like for the battery to retain 70% of capacity in 20 years (If I still have the car), instead of 15, so I do everything for the battery. The car has a feature that allows you to set how much charge you want.

shiv4m11 karma

Can you go into detail about how you were able to purchase this car? Other than doing really well with the Tesla Motor stocks, how did you like options trading? Where did you learn how to trade options?

32no14 karma

Sure. I learned about options from invetopedia and investor discussions on and after investing in the stock with my money, I started putting more and more money into the stock. Then, I adopted a strategy of riding the up and down movements because I knew the general trend was up, so I used margin to buy when I felt the stock was down, and then sold just enough to pay off the margin (Not touching the my original cash investments). This way, I accumulate shares. In terms of options, I'm playing with short term options to get enough money to exercise my January 2014 $75 and $85 calls. Back when I was buying those calls, I also decided to get the car since I had enough money to do it, and I just decided to sell stock every month to pay the Tesla bill. I'm loving options because they help me with my strategy of share accumulation.

what_the_problem_iz25 karma

I wish I understood a fraction of what you just wrote.

32no12 karma

Margin- borrowed money used for investments in stocks

Options- an agreement to buy a certain amount of shares on a certain date at a certain price.

Call- an agreement where the price of the stock has to be higher than your options contract for you to buy stock at the option contract price

Put-Opposite of a call

tehringworm3 karma

buying on margin is long as the stock price doesn't fall.

32no0 karma

If you truly believe that the general trend is up, then it's not that risky to use margin, because if the stock falls, you can always wait for it to recover.

tehringworm5 karma

If the stock falls, they perform a margin call, and you have to produce additional cash.

32no2 karma

There are many ways of preventing this: 1) having extra cash on hand that you use for this very reason 2) Do not use all of your margin and leave a "Buffer" 3) Use Puts to hedge your position, so if the stock falls, the puts would make money and cover your losses. 4) There are other more complicated ways as well.

cherokeesix5 karma

And what if you're wrong? What if Tesla starts having Boeing 787 incidents? What if Elon Musk (god forbid) is incapacitated and no longer able to work? What if some other company comes out with an even better electric car?

You are taking on an incredible amount of risk. Many people have been burned before doing exactly what you are doing right now. And you're hubris tells me you will one day be burned as well.

32no4 karma

Well I believe that the likelihood of those things happening is slim. My average buy in price is $86, which is half of what it is now, so I would have to be very slow to react to such a catastrophic event because a stock doesn't fall in 50% in a couple of days, unless it is a bubble, and I can prove Tesla is not a bubble. All exchanges of money are risky, if you buy a house and it is ripped apart by a storm, you will lose most of the money invested in a house. If YOU think the investment is justified and you are willing to risk it, you should invest. We've all been burned at some time in our life when we bought something.

All I can say is, Risk vs. Reward. If I lose all of my Tesla investment, I could still retire nicely by my calculations, and maintain my current income in retirement. But if my Tesla investment does well, then I will retire even more nicely and maybe even earlier, so the risk makes sense to me.

kotooni10 karma

What do you do for a living?

32no14 karma


1082413 karma

Didn't like the exams?

32no12 karma

Basically what happened.

captainrex6 karma

What are some neat features that you think a lot of people don't know about?

32no21 karma

The side mirrors and the backup mirror actually have a night mode where they turn dark green by themselves (like in night vision goggles) to see better, I do not know how it works but it does. Also something that most Tesla owners know about but other don't is that you can honk the horn, flash the lights, vent the sunroof, see where the car is, how fast the car is going, and how much energy it is using all from a smartphone app. Also, I think most people do not get the gravity of the situation of the fact that the car has constant updates, which really helps the resale value of the car.

Most people don't use cruise control, so they don't know the cruise control in the Model S holds speed very very well.

Also there are some hidden screens, one of which you need to type a passcode to see.

Harry_T3 karma

Hidden screens? Could you specify? Do you mean hidden configuration and debug screens?

32no2 karma

Hidden screen with passcode:

Other hidden thing:

I'm sure there are more we do not know about.

Sir_Osis_of_Liver5 karma

Congratulations on the car. Have you had any fit and finish problems, or anything that required unscheduled service?

32no12 karma

Thanks. I don't consider this a big problem, but my sunroof creaks on uneven/old roads (you have to really pay attention to hear it), so I stopped by the service center to fix it. They put in spacers, and they do it little by little so as to not over load the sunroof with spacers, so I need to go one more time because the creaking is almost gone. The spacers aren't visible which is nice, because fixing simple issues on my old car required visible things.

bencordoza5 karma

Have you had any problems with it?

32no16 karma

No problems other then a creaky sun roof, which was an easy fix, but I have a small wishlist. My wife doesn't like the fact that there is no coat hook and the fact that there are no "oh shit" handles. But I guess that if the car had those things then the interior would not be so streamlined. I am really waiting for the adaptive cruise control update/upgrade though, which I know is coming soon. It would also be nice if they could automate the font trunk, and have slightly more side support on the seats. I got the performance plus package, and I think it is worth the price (But cheaper is better) and the expensive tires that you have to replace every 7,000 miles, some people prefer just the regular performance package for this reason. The model s is still cheaper to maintain than my Infiniti.

tyronebigumz4 karma

How long would you say on average it takes to fully charge the battery?

32no6 karma

My home charger (Nema 1450): 9 hours from 0 miles left There is an option of a high power wall connector that charges in 5 hours from 0 miles The superchargers gives 200 miles of charge in 30 minutes (from 0)

And just for kicks, a standard charger that you charge your phone on would take 46 hours if you have a completely depleted battery and you are charging to 100%.

I never charge to 100% because I Tesla told me that charging to 80% is better for the life of the battery. I would like for the battery to retain 70% of capacity in 20 years (If I still have the car), instead of 15, so I do everything for the battery. The car has a feature that allows you to set how much charge you want.

handbanana63 karma

Any concerns about the winter(general things like traction, but also battery cold start issues)?

I live in Ohio and I'm not sure I'd want one because of our sucky weather.

32no1 karma

No concerns for the winter. The battery works fine in cold weather according to other owners, but the range might suffer up to 10%. Traction should be fine if you throw on a pair of good winter tires.

koiboy3 karma

If you don't mind me asking, how much did you initially invest in Tesla?

32no10 karma

About 60% of my life savings.

uncreativemynameis22 karma

Just want anyone that reads ^ to know that this was an extremely risky investment strategy. Any finance professional would highly recommend that you don't invest so much in one company, and even one type of asset (depending on your age). See

32no6 karma

This is a popular investment theory that most investors adopt, but I disagree with this theory. People should judge for themselves how to move their money. Diversification protects your money, but investing large amounts of capital in one stock you really believe in is much, much more profitable, but more risky.

morten_schwarzschild3 karma

Does Tesla provide any training or manuals? I'm especially interested in what kind of maintenance the car needs, both regular and extraordinary.

32no3 karma

Wiper fluid change is free, rotating tires once a year is free, simple fixes are free. The tires though, those are pretty expensive at $500 a pop if you got the performance plus package with the special tires and I have to change them every 7000 miles. Also, the brake pads need to be replaced much less often because of regenerative breaking.

Free_spirit10223 karma

Besides at home, where do you stop to charge it?

32no7 karma

I use or the plugshare app to find chargers. Almost any outlet in the country is a charger.

z4cz0r3 karma

How long do you expect the batteries to last? What are the replacement costs for? Are you worries about the Supercharger system shortening the usable life of your batteries?

32no1 karma

I'm not going to be using the supercharging system too much. I expect the batteries to last 15-20 years based on one test from a while ago. Since the batteries would last that long, I would probably have a new car by that time instead of replacing the batteries. The minimum amount of time the batteries can last is 8 years because the warranty covers 8 years.

z4cz0r3 karma

Do you know how much a set of replacement batteries will be after that 8 year mark?

32no1 karma

I hear that you can pay $12,000 to get a battery at the 8 year mark when you buy the car.

Mdcastle2 karma

What about 500 mile road trips? Do you not do those, or do you rent a gasoline car?

32no4 karma

Neither. For 260+ mile road trips, I use to find chargers, these chargers are slow, but Tesla is rolling out a system of superchargers that will cover the whole country by 2015, these chargers give you 200 miles of range in 30 minutes. Here is the supercharger map by 2015:

and here is the link to the interactive chart:

farzyness2 karma

Congrats on the car!

As an investor in TSLA myself and a hopeful Model S owner down the road, are you still invested in TSLA? I personally think TSLA, SCTY (SolarCity) and PCRFY (Panasonic, which makes the batteries) are going to be 3 of the more explosive stocks in the coming decade. I'm in all three of them.

And lastly, from a scale of 1 to OMFGBBQ, how would you HONESTLY rate the car?


32no3 karma

I am still invested in Tesla, I could tell you some of my strategies if you would like. My honest rating of the car on a scale of 1-10 would be a 9.5, which is in the "OMFG its awesome!" range. I am going to get a custom plate that says "Car 2.0" or something like that.

DanteEstonia2 karma

How many shares of stock did you purchase? I own 35 shares, bought tsla in 2011, and I might be able to afford the deposit.

32no1 karma

I'd rather not share the amount of shares, but I would recommend keeping your shares rather than selling to make a deposit for the car. I plan on selling a little bit of stock to make my monthly payments for the car, and the deposit I covered with savings.

yermahm2 karma

You are a Tesla shill...

32no4 karma

Mainly because I love their product, there are quite a few flaws that come with making the first in house product, but it is still the best car I've ever seen or driven. Lets not forget the company has made me money. I was actually a strong skeptic before I invested, because I heard it was just laptop batteries strapped to a car, and when I did research, I saw the potential of this company. I might be wrong, but I believe this company is a disrupting force in the auto industry.

chibidi2 karma

what do you think the problems with TSLA are right now? as reflected in its stock price (dipped from $194 to $150)

32no2 karma

Just an overeaction from overly confident investors who thought that the 3rd quarterly report was going to be a blow out, and when it wasn't a blowout (it still beat analyst expectations) they panicked and sold.

dahappybanana2 karma

I'm still not sold on the whole idea of touchscreens in cars. I have two concerns, one is on gravel and bumpy roads where you can't find the button and then push it like on normal buttons that require force to actuate and the other is the use of gloves in the winter. Can you comment on my concerns?

32no1 karma

There is a cloth in the glove compartment used to clean the dash, and when I wipe the dash, it presses buttons, so I am pretty sure gloves would work, but then again, who wears gloves inside a car? You don't have to wait for the car to warm up because you can control the heat through smartphone app. Also, most of the controls are controllable through the steering wheel, and besides, the ride in the Tesla is relatively smooth and I haven't driven on a road that has given me trouble pressing buttons.

yasserkhan12 karma

seems you bought used, were you still able to take advantage or any tax incentives?

32no5 karma

I bought new, and got the car 6 weeks ago. I got $7,500 from the federal government and $3,000 from Pennsylvania in incentives.

yasserkhan11 karma

so the purchase price was at 50k after incentives or more because of sports package?

32no9 karma

The car starts at $70k so the purchase price in Pennsylvania would be $60k (without sales tax). My car cost $115K, so with incentives it cost me $105k.

whereisspacebar1 karma

Since there are no Tesla dealerships, where did you go to buy the car?

32no5 karma

I picked it up at a Tesla service center which was about 45 minutes away (I live in Pennsylvania).

oallelsefailo1 karma

Is it still under warranty? Does having an electric 60K car (I think?) worry you at all in terms of getting serviced? My friends family owns a couple lamborghinis and they're constantly getting serviced due to one thing or another.

32no2 karma

The car has a 4 year warranty and the battery has an 8 year warranty. My car cost $115K (The base price is $71,070) and the servicing does not worry me because I actually save money on service as compared to my old car. There are much less parts in the Model S, so less things break, and less things need to replaced or repaired. And my car is still on warranty since I bought New.

johndavismit1 karma

What's your advice for someone trying to get into options?

32no0 karma

Hedge your position with puts, which should be below $1. If there is a big fall, the less an option is worth before the fall, the faster it multiplies after the fall.

Also, be very cautious with options, do not go overboard and make sure that if you use margin for options, do not max it out, use maybe 2/3.

johndavismit1 karma

Do you pay any attention to sites like tasty trade? if so, what do you recommend?

Great AMA BTW, thanks for answering my question.

32no1 karma

I do not really have time for in depth investing, so instead I focus all the time that I do have on one stock, and the rest of the money is in mutual funds. I usually read Tesla motors club posts in investor discussions, I read all the articles from yahoo finance and google finance, and I follow Elon's Twitter. I follow more news about the company than I follow advice about the stock. So stock advice websites are not my cup of tea. However, I do use to play around with the stock chart sometimes, and it has some really good tools.

TheSanctified1 karma

Do you ever miss the noise of an engine?

32no7 karma

Never. I love the faint whine of the electric motor, sounds like you are going into warp drive when you step on the accelerator.

Clam_Jammer1 karma


32no1 karma

I actually like the creep. It is awesome that they added that option, and there is a comfort and sport mode for steering. So the options are very nice.

buxe20001 karma

Electric cars are seen as "good for the environment". However, this is only true if the electricity used is generated from renewable sources.

Which electric company do you use as electricity provider for your Tesla and using what sources is the electricity generated?

32no2 karma

When Pennsylvania raises the tax credits for solar panels, I will get them on my roof.

jellevdv1 karma

What did you ride before you had a tesla? Is there anything you love about your previous car, that the tesla doesn't have?

32no1 karma

I rode an Infiniti G35, and the only thing I could miss is the engine noise. But the thing is, I absolutely DO NOT miss the engine noise. I'm loving the quiet ride.

firefoxquest1 karma

Is it possible for you to post more pictures of inside of the car and also how it looks under the hood?

JMS19912 karma

Where is the motor located?

32no4 karma

In between the rear wheels under the trunk. It is about the size of a watermelon.

Grothingfash1 karma

what was your initial investment when the stock was cheap?

32no1 karma

About 60% of my life savings.

Wiesnoff2 karma

That's a pretty bold investment. How did you justify the investment? As in, why did you think it would be beneficial and that you would get your money back?

32no3 karma

Well, I know the company has an exceptional product, and an exceptional leader. I have projections of prices like $800-$1000 per share by 2022, assuming there are no splits. I know the company has 1.7 Billion in assets to fall back on (as of now) and I feel that this company has the capability to disturb the auto industry. Also, the company can make huge profits on licencing their technology and their superchargers. Because of this fact, I consider this company a tech stock because its technology profits not only from sales, and tech companies usually have aggresive valuations, making my investment justified. This was my simplest explanation, I have explanations in number form as well, but I think the Deutsche Bank report on Tesla shows their potential. I predict $210-$220 by the end of the year.

cherokeesix11 karma

You sound exactly like all the wannabe investors that got burned in the crash at the turn of the century.

32no2 karma

The crash was mostly companies who never made money and had low margin business models. Tesla has already posted profits at high gross margins. Don't forget that the "smart guys" also got burned. Everybody got burned during the dot com crash. Besides I have reasons to believe that Tesla is not a bubble like the dot coms were.

Capitalistpiggy1 karma

I've been fawning over this car since its first news release. Thank you for your comments on the car. Before I read your AMA I was utterly in love with the car and wanted one more than anything else; now I am a literal fanatic!

Good stuff man, congratulations on the car!

32no2 karma


SuperiorCircumstance1 karma

Do you think parking lots will accommodate electric cars in the near future? Would it be the person pays for the electricity used or time connected to the outlet?

32no1 karma

Actually it is illegal for anyone but electrical companies to charge for electricity, so people are charged for time that their electric car is plugged in. If you go on, you can see electric car chargers around, and I think that more and more parking lots will have them.

FoolForTheCity0 karma

The other day I heard an interview on the radio with Steve Buscemi talking about how he owns a Tesla. I don't know why, but I thought to myself, "I need to buy stock in this company. I dont want to make the mistake people did with Apple." There are so many Tesla "Stores" in the higher end malls in Southern California. Its starting to appeal to celebrities as well. I truly believe this AMA is another sign to me and I truly believe this is THE car of the future.

32no0 karma

Go to and click on investor discussions under Tesla Motors. You will see how bright the people are and almost all of them are Tesla Investors. I read what they have to say and contribute sometimes, and it really gives good insight into the company. Investing in it is truly a good move in my opinion.

oneAngrySonOfaBitch4 karma

Thats definitely not a biased source.

32no0 karma

It is a biased source, but I wasn't trying to give a non biased source, I was trying to show the arguments for a higher stock price in the future. If you want an unbiased source that has the same outlook, look into the deutsche bank report on Tesla, the bank is known to be extremely conservative on its reports and price targets, and the report is a very good insight into the company as well.

what_did_you_eat0 karma

I'm actually watching a video of Elon Musk at the moment!

So, what did you have to eat today?

32no-3 karma

I havent eaten since my sunny side up breakfast, but I had a 7-Up when I was meeting up today with another Tesla owner and his wife.