Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk turned a product upgrade announcement into a major media event, building anticipation over the course of a week by dropping a few clues on social media and dancing around questions about "Unveiling the D".
Tesla's D-Day generated the kind of buzz every other automaker dreams of. For that, he deserves all the credit in the world. It's what every CEO would love to do.
That said, let's separate the hype from the reality.
1) Dual Motor All Wheel Drive
Hype: The dual motor AWD will improve efficiency of the Model S and win over buyers in cold weather states.
Reality: You can find this feature in most other luxury cars, and Tesla needed to offer it.
Will it drive major sales gains? Probably not.
"The drivers who will buy the 'D' wanted the Model S from day one. Tesla is simply responding to their needs. Adding all-wheel drive is the no-brainer way to capture those car shoppers," said Ivan Drury with Edmunds.com
2) Auto Pilot Features
Hype: This technology, using a new suite of radars, GPS and a camera with image recognition is a game changer.
Reality: Yes and no.