The Tesla Model X Is An Awful Car Until It Isn't

No recent vehicle is more polarizing at Jalopnik, in the industry or in automotive culture than the Tesla Model X right now. Why? Because it’s a fundamentally promising vehicle that looks like a blanched egg, and from a company that’s going through growing pains. You’ve heard a lot of good and bad, but is the Model X really awful?

Remember Doug DeMuro? Me either. But when he’s not driving a car he recently bought that barely gets more than 200 miles of range, he’s driving the Tesla Model X and addressing some of the criticism that surrounds it.

Does it have quality issues? Sure, just as many as a car from any other 10-year-old automaker would have. Do the silly vertical-opening doors not make any sense? Of course not—but they’re an awesome trick at Cars & Coffee. In fact, I’ve personally seen the Model X draw a larger crowd at a car meet than a LaFerrari.


The Model X is impractical for a crossover, hard on the eyes and expensive to the wallet, but it’s not nearly as plagued as the internet makes it out to be and extremely exciting to drive. It’s the best promise of a future we could hope for. It’s awful until it’s not.

Reviews Editor, Jalopnik

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My best friend got a Model X a couple months ago. It’s very fast. It also feels as cheap as a 1990s Kia. Plastic everywhere, weird seat backs that look like a shiny Boblebee backpack, tacky interior, and yes, the exterior is ugly. Not even Pontiac Aztek ugly, where it can grow on you—more like uncanny valley ugly, like a bad 3D character in a regional insurance commercial.

The greenhouse is amazing. The front seat is a beautiful place to be, when you’re looking at the scenery outside. Unfortunately, it’s also dominated by that hideous jumbotron in the dashwith its video poker-style UI, constantly demanding your attention, even when you want to look away.

Ultimately, no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t stop thinking of all the other things $130,000 could have bought.