In Florida, drivers waited long hours in gas stations to get enough fuel to escape Hurricane Irma Friday. The state highways were also packed as authorities urged residents to flee north if they’re in the storm’s path.
Electric-car drivers faced a different type of stress as they feared that their batteries may run dry before they can make it to safety. Fortunately, Tesla Motors was able to help some of those drivers remotely by expanding their range through a software update.
The company assisted only the owners of Model X and Model S cars equipped with 60kWh or 70kWh battery packs. Those drivers had been able to purchase cheaper versions of the vehicles but with a shorter range. They always had the possibility of an update at a later date.
Tesla Car Owners Getting Free Range Bumps
However, Tesla can remotely install those updates. One spokesperson for the company said a driver had asked an upgrade from the company in a bid to flee the storm and the electric-car maker concluded that all drivers in the storm’s path should get a free range bump.
Model S and Model X owners can request the free update until Sept. 16 if they are in the hurricane’s path. After the update, they’ll have an additional 30 to 40 miles of range, which would normally cost them from $4.500 to $9,000, based on the vehicle.
Tesla’s decision was hailed even by its critics, but the company needs to focus more on creating a range that can keep electric vehicle owners safe in emergency situations like the one in Florida.
The base Model S and Model X are no longer available for purchase in the U.S., but prospective buyers can still pick a range on their liking and shell out the cash accordingly.
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