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Watch Tesla's Robocar Achieve Warp Speed

This video shows the upcoming dual-motor model going from zero to 60 in 3.6 seconds

1 min read
Watch Tesla's Robocar Achieve Warp Speed
Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Our tech elite grew up with Star Trek, which is why a lot of our tech looks like props from that old TV show: the flip phone is like Capt. Kirk’s communicator, the laser pointer is a phaser, the tricorder is a reality.

Next year, when Tesla Motors releases the dual-motor, four-wheel-drive, semiautonomous version of its Model S, drivers will boldly go where no (electric) car has gone before: into Warp drive.

This video shows a test ride in which the zero-to-60 time comes to 3.6 seconds, 0.4 seconds longer than Tesla is promising for the car next year. Note how it’s framed by lighting reminiscent of the special effects that early Star Trek movies used to suggest faster-than-light travel:

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We Need More Than Just Electric Vehicles

To decarbonize road transport we need to complement EVs with bikes, rail, city planning, and alternative energy

11 min read
A worker works on the frame of a car on an assembly line.

China has more EVs than any other country—but it also gets most of its electricity from coal.

VCG/Getty Images

EVs have finally come of age. The total cost of purchasing and driving one—the cost of ownership—has fallen nearly to parity with a typical gasoline-fueled car. Scientists and engineers have extended the range of EVs by cramming ever more energy into their batteries, and vehicle-charging networks have expanded in many countries. In the United States, for example, there are more than 49,000 public charging stations, and it is now possible to drive an EV from New York to California using public charging networks.

With all this, consumers and policymakers alike are hopeful that society will soon greatly reduce its carbon emissions by replacing today’s cars with electric vehicles. Indeed, adopting electric vehicles will go a long way in helping to improve environmental outcomes. But EVs come with important weaknesses, and so people shouldn’t count on them alone to do the job, even for the transportation sector.

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