Tesla: Better Warranty? Check! Upgradeable Cars? Sure! 500-Mile Batteries? Maybe Soon!

Leave it to Tesla Motors to turn what could have been a rather dull announcement about improving its service program into something of a mini-dazzler Friday. CEO Elon Musk not only promised to honor the company’s 8-year battery warranty under pretty much all conditions — “lighting the pack on fire with a blowtorch is not covered” — but Tesla also rolled out a plan that allowed owners to upgrade to a top-of-the-line Model S anytime their car goes in for service. Musk also hinted that today’s 265-mile range on the most-expensive model wasn’t any kind of endgame; but rather that a 500-mile battery could be available within 4 years. To top it off, Tesla finished the first quarter having outsold the much less expensive Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf, to become the most popular plug-in vehicle in the U.S.

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