The flagship sedan of Elon Musk’s high-profile electric fleet will be getting an early start on 2017 thanks to a facelift and functional upgrades all of which are heading into production this week. Highlighting the first-ever round of exterior changes on the Tesla Model S is a recast front fascia that copies the look of the Model X. It dispenses with the current traditional faux grille while retaining the winged Tesla logo on a body-color backdrop framed by more elegantly contoured LED headlamps. These lights now offer corner-following adaptive capability as part of the Model S Premium Upgrades Package. 

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Other changes of note include a more potent 48-amp standard on-board charger in place of the original 40-amp unit as well as a new 72-amp option, new Figured Ash Wood and Dark Ash Wood interior trim choices and a HEPA air filtration system with “Bioweapon Defense Mode” capability first seen on the Model X -- although it also can only be had as part of the Premium Upgrades Package. The per-charge range of the Model S 90D and P90D models also have been bumped a bit. According to the latest round of EPA testing, the 90D’s stat moves from 270 to 302 miles and the figure on the performance-biased P90D rises from 253 to 294 miles when the cars are rolling on their standard 19-inch wheel/tire fitments. While rumors of an even longer-range version of the Model S with a 100wKh battery pack continue to swirl, there’s still no official word regarding the status of that update.

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While the Model S lineup carries over with 70D, 90D and P90D variants, the mid-year revamp will add $1,500 to the sticker of each with the most affordable 70D model now opening at $77,700 and the P90D starting at $111,000. The first of these new Teslas are slated to arrive in U.S. showrooms by late May.

More EVs and Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles…

2017 Chevrolet Bolt will open near $30,000 and offer 200-mile-plus range

The 2017 Hyundai Ioniq will offer EV, Hybrid and Plug-in power choices

2016 Nissan LEAF offers more range and new features


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