Put a teenager behind the wheel of a powerful automobile and bad things can happen — fast. In Germany, on May 4, an 18 year old took 4 friends for ride in her father’s brand new Tesla Model S. Within minutes, she lost control of the car in a turn. German authorities blame “excessive speed” was the crash. The car hurtled off the road, flew 82 feet through the air, and completed a full 360° barrel roll before landing on all 4 wheels.
Ordinarily, after an accident like that, the father would not only be mourning his own daughter’s death but also have the burden of informing 4 other families that their child was dead or severely injured. None of that happened. According to German news site Merkur, all were able to crawl from the heavily damaged Tesla afterwards. All sustained serious but not life threatening injuries. Some were transported by helicopter to hospitals in nearby Munich.
Electrek points out that the lack of a combustion engine mounted in the front of the car allows Tesla to design a vehicle that is more crashworthy than a conventional car. The front of the car was totally demolished, but the passenger compartment was unaffected. All the doors still opened. The windshield is not even cracked. This “highlights the importance of a large crumple zone, like the Tesla Model S’ front trunk (frunk), something easier to design with electric vehicles due to the lack of engines and the use of smaller motors,” says Electrek. Damage to the Tesla is estimated at $100,000.
Musk has described the crashworthiness of a car without a big lump of an engine mounted up front this way. “it’s just like jumping into a pool from a high diving board — you want a deep pool and one without rocks in it.” As usual, he says a lot in a few words. News of the crash caught his attention.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 6, 2016
If you are wondering how one gets a 5,300 pound car to fly, simply get going really fast and plow head on into the nearest ramp. Here’s the embankment this Tesla hit on its way to establishing a new long jump record for electric automobiles.
Millions of words have been written about how quickly a Tesla accelerates. Not enough has been written about how safe the people are inside. Elon Musk says someday human drivers may be banned on public roads because they do too many stupid things while behind the wheel. Viewing the evidence presented here, he may have a point.
Source: Electrek. Photos Merkur.de via Electrek