Test The Limits

Tesla Model X: the SUV uncompromised?

By Exa

September 30 2015

It’s been a three and a half year tease from Tesla CEO Elon Musk, but many will say it’s been worth the wait as the Model X was unveiled last night at the company’s warehouse in Fremont, California.


Tesla handed over the keys to the Model X Signature Edition, a $132,000 model with all the trimmings, to five early customers. Those ordering the car today will have to be patient, as the company is predicting 8-12 months for delivery.


So, what makes the car so sought-after? Well, Tesla is claiming that Model X is ‘the SUV uncompromised’. With a range of 250 miles, zero to 60mph time of 3.2 seconds, and space for seven adults and all of their gear, it’s hard to disagree.


Model X can travel 250 miles on a single charge thanks, Tesla says, to the fact that it’s the most aerodynamic SUV in production. At 0.24, the Model X drag coefficient is 20% lower than the next best SUV on the market. Some very cool features make this possible, such as an active spoiler which deploys to one of three preset positions when the car is in motion, optimizing visibility, highway efficiency and stability.


As well as being safe, fast, capable and efficient (as if that wasn’t enough!), Model X has been praised for its ‘gorgeous design’. So how do you make a car beautiful and efficient?


Tesla is an expert in this particular field. The Model S – a strikingly beautiful car with drag coefficient of 0.24cd – was designed and engineered using Exa’s simulation-driven design software, which involved the deployment of CFD as a strategic tool early in the product development process. Through simulation-driven design, Tesla was able to reduce the car’s drag coefficient from 0.32 for early styling concepts to 0.27 and finally 0.24. Every surface was the outcome of tight integration of the styling and aerodynamics engineering teams.


The Model X has been designed and engineered according to the same principles – and we are very proud to have played a part in its development. Watch this space for more details soon.