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How To Drive A Tesla Model S Electric Car Free For 18 Months

The low cost of electricity compared to gasoline or diesel means driving an electric car typically comes with significant savings per mile, even if not necessarily in purchase price. What could be better than dramatically reduced operating costs? Well, how about driving a sexy, glamorous, high-performance electric car...for free? That's exactly what one Tesla Model S owner claims to have done. When accounting for money saved on fuel and maintenance, a poster on the Tesla Motors official forum claims to have effectively driven his car for free for about 18 months. Here's how the owner--username "LeonardV" in the post--determined that. The figures listed below are his own calculations. The car was purchased in California in September 2013 at a list price of $96,000, including the state sales tax. However, the Model S was eligible for both the $7,500 Federal tax credit and $2,500 California rebate for new electric cars, effectively reducing the price to $86,000. The car now has 53,000 miles on it, and the owner believes he can sell it for $77,000--meaning it will have depreciated by $9,000 from the post-incentive price. In addition, the car's loan includes interest at 2 percent APR, for an estimated $2,400 during the period of ownership. However, that's where the costs stop, according to the owner. He claims not to have paid for any servicing, although the Model S has visited a Tesla service center for warranty repairs and free tire rotations. Note that this regimen may not conform to Tesla's own service recommendations, and may not be possible depending on how a given car is used. This Model S owner didn't have to pay for charging, either.