The majority of readers of Electrek, a website for Tesla Stans, apparently do not like the Tesla Model X’s falcon doors. They are wrong and I am here to tell them why they are wrong.
I was saving this up for a Tesla Model X review I’m going to get to eventually, but whatever. It’s Senior Week and there’s no stopping this train now.
The falcon doors are a gimmick, yes, but they are a great gimmicks. Gimmicks are what people remember and cherish about cars. The Citroen SM’s janky-ass steering? Gold. The DeLorean’s gullwings? Perfection. The Pontiac Aztek’s everything?
Nirvana made corporeal.
The falcon doors are brilliant. They go up, not out. They bend in the middle. You can operate them remotely. They’re so awesome even Tesla thinks they are too awesome and were probably a mistake. When they open up in a tight spot it looks like a bird getting really freaked out. They have literally several hinges, traditionally the mark of a great door.
The Falcon Wing doors are great. And even if they are not great—which they very much ARE, so don’t get any ideas—the idea of them is great. Virtually every single mainstream carmaker is run by cowards afraid of an idea that isn’t the same one everyone else is doing. Okay, so the execution of the idea might not have been the best, and it may have caused a severe headache that includes a lawsuit, but so what?
If we demanded the removal of all brilliant ideas that didn’t exactly work properly, then we’d have to get rid of oddball French suspensions and Alfa Romeo V6s and really anything made by TVR. The road to automotive legend is paved with quirky brilliance, and those willing to take the burden of brilliance upon themselves will inevitably be rewarded with a lifetime of people thinking they are very interesting at parties that we don’t get invited to.
To reject that brilliance is to encourage conformity, to encourage a sea of beige.
If you want boring-ass doors get a Toyota. If you want people to be interesting, get something with good doors.
Fifty years from now, people will remember the original Tesla Model X and its weird doors with fondness, because they are great. Even if they don’t always work.