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(Popular Mechanics)   The final world on the whole Tesla vs New York Times comes from Popular Mechanics. In a nutshell: a pox on both of them (link fixed)   ( divider line
    More: Followup, Model S, actual malice  
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14634 clicks; posted to Main » on 20 Feb 2013 at 12:47 PM (5 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

Voting Results (Smartest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

2013-02-20 11:51:47 AM  
9 votes:
Broder: The Model S sucks! It ran out of electricity!
Tesla: That's because you drove too fast, took long detours, and drove in circles in a parking lot. Here's the data.
Broder: You didn't share that data with me when I wrote the article, so therefore it doesn't count.
Sullivan: That sounds reasonable. He was clearly writing in good faith. Also, I'm not going to respond to any of the specific complaints because I don't think that's useful.
Popular Mechanics: That sounds reasonable. Sullivan was clearly writing in good faith. Both sides are bad: Broder for being sloppy, and Tesla for claiming he did it intentionally rather than just being lazy, which is equally bad. Also, I'm not going to respond to any of the specific complaints because I don't think that's useful.

Journalists circling the wagons?
2013-02-20 12:55:09 PM  
3 votes:
This whole thing has shown has scared some journalists are of facts and data and how quickly they will change their story when presented with them after their article is published.
2013-02-20 12:51:14 PM  
3 votes:
There's no clear "winner" in this debacle. Broder might have been sloppy in his reporting

wow, that's generous instead of saying "lying" they call it sloppy reporting like it wasn't intentional. popular mechanics is looks like they apologizing here, sad.
2013-02-20 01:25:01 PM  
2 votes:
Fascinating how nobody but Broder talks about the part where Broder spoke directly with managers and engineers half a dozen times over two days. If Tesla's own people advised Broder to do what he did, can we really attribute his behavior to stupidity? It's not clear whether Broder is misrepresenting what his contacts at Tesla were telling him, because Musk and the press simply ignore this point.

Seems kind of important to me -- our people told you to proceed and that the battery would magically find its power (erm, "recondition"), but you were maliciously bombing the test because you should have known they were dead wrong? So the issue is with Tesla's customer service, not with their vehicle?
2013-02-20 01:12:44 PM  
2 votes:
If I have to call a tech support line for advise on how to get somewhere and may have software revisions pushed to the car...the car is a failure
2013-02-20 12:56:53 PM  
2 votes:
One of the commenters in the article nailed it: "Never attribute to malice that which can be explained by stupidity."

I would be a little more specific, though: "Never attribute to malice that which can be explained by stupidity and confirmation bias." I don't think he intentionally sabotaged the test, but I do think he found what he was looking for. Humans are funny that way... we can find just about anything (reasons to be offended, rationalizations, affirmations, etc) when we look hard enough.
2013-02-20 12:52:38 PM  
2 votes:
FTA: isn't as comfortably mindless as a road trip in an average car.

Was anyone honestly disputing this?

If you want a mindless road-trip, don't drive an experimental car, maybe?
2013-02-20 04:13:08 PM  
1 vote:

gibbon1: I mean sure, an electric car won't have the range or quick replenishment of go juice that a gasoline car does. But whatever. Broder's a retard. I'd say like my brother, but if my brother had an electric car he would very carefully make sure it was always fully charged before going for a drive.

Good point, but I get the idea that Tesla saw this article as an opportunity to sell the car as something that it wasn't. Broder was an asshole for not following directions.

Here's the thing: If I'm driving a car that was promised to go x miles, and when things go wrong, I have to get on the farking phone with a team of engineers, and they blame it on the fact that I circled a parking lot 3 times, and I should wait till the weather got warmer, guess what? That car ISN'T READY YET!
2013-02-20 02:45:32 PM  
1 vote:

ha-ha-guy: The fundamental issue is a 10 gpm gas pump puts 180 to 300 miles of range into a vehicle in one minute. The Tesla takes at least an hour to get 300 miles of range on a supercharger. You can't solve the range issues of an electric car until you solve the charging, so marketing it as a road trip capable car is leading the consumer down the garden path.

If you can pull off a 1 minute gas stop on a road trip, you should look into working in NASCAR.

Driving a Tesla 300 miles at 60 mph is 5 hours of driving. If you're like any normal human being, you'll be taking a piss & food break every 2 1/2 hours or so, which would reduce the "super" charge time to 30 minutes.

Tens of thousands of Americans go on road-trips with motorcycles, which require refueling stops every 100 to 150 miles or so, depending on how much they trust their reserve tank. Typically, they'll top off the tank (which honestly takes about 3-4 minutes when you include taking gear off, gassing up, and paying for fuel). Then get off the bike and stretch a bit, and get some snacks from the quick-mart (about 5-10 minutes or so), then take a piss (another 2-3 minutes). At this point, you're looking at a solid 20 minutes to get gas, piss and eat.

A fast charger tops off a Leaf in 22-25 minutes, and considering it costs ~$2 instead of $18 in my motorcycle, I'd be more than happy to wait an extra 5 minutes during my road-trip breaks to refuel for almost 1/10th the cost. If I want to stick to the scenic by-ways on my road trips (with a 55mph speed limit), taking a 25 minute break for every 2 hours of driving isn't that unreasonable. Shiat, I already do that on my motorcycle road trips.
2013-02-20 02:33:57 PM  
1 vote:

WhoopAssWayne: I love seeing all the OMG FAUX NEWS! liberals on here defending the New York Times and this pure fabrication of an article.

What world do you live in where this is happening?  It's like you've not read any of the previous 3 threads on this reporters idiocy.
2013-02-20 02:12:37 PM  
1 vote:

TanSau: Who the fark still reads Popular Mechanics (or Science) anymore?

People who are waiting for a haircut at the "barber" (not at a "hair salon"), but aren't interested in Field and Stream (even to just flip to the end and read the Pat McManus column) and all the Sports Illustrateds are being read, even the Swimsuit Issue with the sticky cover and missing pages.
2013-02-20 01:34:25 PM  
1 vote:
DRTFA, but this is what I'm guessing it says:

NY Times writer decides to write an article on the Tesla, arranges a road trip. Tesla tells him that he has to do 15 (or so) things to make the car work right. Writer agrees, doesn't do the 15 things, then writes an article slamming Tesla, while conveniently omitting that he didn't do the 15 things. In other words, he ignored most of the advice, and drove it like a regular person would drive it. Car dies.

Writer is an idiot for not following directions.

Tesla team are idiots for trying to pass off new technology as mainstream.

Did I miss anything?
2013-02-20 01:30:43 PM  
1 vote:
John Broder is a poorly disguised stooge for big oil.  Margaret Sullivan has no choice but to protect him because she is aware of how deep the rabbit hole goes at the NYT and can't afford to have the rug yanked out from under their pay-to-play "journalism".

I have no idea what Steve Rousseau from Popular Mechanics has to do with this other than trying to cash in on the high profile nature of the subject matter.  His "controversial" conclusion is "There's no clear winner."
2013-02-20 01:20:29 PM  
1 vote:
Whatever, Popular Mechanics, where the hell's my flying car?
2013-02-20 01:13:20 PM  
1 vote:
The final words are two:  Range Anxiety.
2013-02-20 01:11:32 PM  
1 vote:
In other words, the car works fairly well despite the hit-job in the NY Times, but early adopters of the brand new model that's built on newer technology may experience some issues therefore Both Sides Are Bad.

That's some might fine hemmin' and hawin', Popular Mechanics.
2013-02-20 01:09:37 PM  
1 vote:
Maybe no one "won", but the Times reporter is clearly a dbag troll.
2013-02-20 01:06:01 PM  
1 vote:
So the "final word" is to spend five paragraphs summarizing what happened, and then write one paragraph whose thesis is, "There's no clear 'winner' in this debacle."

Thanks, Popular Mechanics!
2013-02-20 12:59:01 PM  
1 vote:
The Tesla is a great car as long as you do this, this, this and this, but don't do that, that, that and that.
2013-02-20 12:54:22 PM  
1 vote:
Guys, we can't talk about this anymore. They had the final word.
2013-02-20 12:40:25 PM  
1 vote:

Theaetetus: Journalists circling the wagons?

I don't see why Popular Mechanics wouldn't throw the New York Times under the bus? Popular Mechanics should be the publication that you turn to for stuff like this not the New York Times. If I was publishing PM you can bet I would mention that a few times in the article.
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