Tame Geek

Tame Geek – 2016 Tesla Model S 90D Review

He’s been on the hunt for a while, but our good friend the Tame Geek has finally managed to track down a Tesla. Here’s his review which was first posted over on the Tame Geek ‘site.2016 Tesla Model S 90DA little of background if you don’t know why this car is important. In 2008 during the global financial apocalypse, it was more than the banks that took a hit – the American car industry was decimated too. During this time a chap called Elon Musk assumed control of a company he had invested in called Tesla. As CEO and product architect, he has been the most outspoken car company boss in recent memory. The thing is; he keeps his word. The product roadmap for Tesla brought the Roadster, the Model S, the recently launched Model X, and next years Model 3 to market and has spurred (scared) other manufacturers in to rushing forward with their electrification plans.

So with that background, you can see that this car is not only important in general, it’s important to me. I’ve been waiting to get behind the wheel of one of these for what feels like forever.

What is it?
The car as tested here is a Tesla Model S 90D. With Tesla we have new kinds of ‘engine’ designations to learn, so with this one, we have a car with dual-electric motors, hence the ‘D’. The 90 stands for the kWh (kilowatt-hours) of the battery. This number relates not just to power, but to range as well. So our Tesla is an all-wheel drive car, with a reported range of 346 miles per charge, and a 0-60 mph time of 4.2 seconds, with a sticker price of £81, 450 (excluding government incentives. Starting price of a Model S is £57,750 excluding incentives). Oh yeah and an equivalent 417bhp and 485ft-lb of torque, and a top speed of 155mph.2016 Tesla Model S 90D

What is it like as a car?
Like someone doing a really good impression of a celebrity. The Model S has borrowed some design cues from its Audi, Mazda and Jaguar competitors, which give it a distinctly European look and that is quite refreshing for an American car. At the crux of it, the Model S doesn’t feel like an American or a European car. It feels like a truly ‘World car’. A machine that would fit in anywhere and removes the bias of borders.
One of the nicest things about the Model S is the fact that some of the design details that are present are the kind of things you only see on concept cars and never in real production models. One of my weaknesses, frameless doors, are present, as are the door handles that slide in to the bodywork when the car is locked, or in motion. On the inside, we have a centre console area that would be filled with buttons in most cars but in the Model S is filled with high-definition display.
Said display is again filled with the kind of things the manufacturers have spent years talking about but never following though on to a great level.2016 Tesla Model S 90DFor instance, other cars have modems built-in, but the Model S uses it’s for access to Google Maps rather than a proprietary sat-nav and music streaming from a premium Spotify account (courtesy of Tesla). I thought that the big screen would have been more distracting, and a bit less useable than it was, but after many software updates it seems to be really quite practical. The design could use a little less skeuomorphism to be fair, but hell – this is one of the first cars in the world to have an upgradeable dash. (more…)

Tame Geek Review | Jaguar XE 180 TDI R-Sport

Proof that our good friend, and regular ESM contributor, the Tame Geek will test stuff that isn’t made in Germany! Tonight he gives his thoughts on the new ‘baby Jag’ offering.

Jaguar XENow usually, most car reviews come with a plethora of clichés and when it comes to a review of the first actually baby Jaguar, it’s clear this is going to be a minefield of them. There’s also going to be a lot of comparisons talk but really, that’s what this car has always been about. How does it compare to class leader and the rest of the class?

Well, this is a TG review, so we shall use the tried and tested formula; what it is, then what it’s like to drive. The Jaguar XE in review here is the 180PS (178bhp) diesel with 8-speed gearbox in R-Sport trim. From what the Jaguar contact said, the Prestige trim is likely to be the most popular model for private buyers.

When you first clap eyes on the XE from the front, it is a bit tricky to tell it apart from its big sister, the XF. It’s really only when you move slightly round to the side and see the flanks of the car does its individual styling come to light. It’s even clearer from the back that the XE is its own car. In this segment of the market (are these really D-segment saloons now?) it’s typical that the lower price models can often look a bit cheap. Big tyres with small alloys, tacky trim and more blank button spaces than actual buttons.Jaguar XE

 

The XE is brand-new and, right now, Jaguar doesn’t need to make a basic version. With that the XE makes many statements, the first of which is that it’s no cut-down car. The styling on the basic model is good and the Prestige just adds a bit more too that. The R-Sport adds on this with a little tail spoiler and some bolder arches. Honestly, unless you really wanted the R-Sport’s sharp skirts, there’s no real reason to go for it. This car looks great in all its trims. It really goes to show just how much work has gone in to Jaguar design. The XE is not the XF, but they share DNA and unlike the Audis and BMWs of this world, the Jaguars are cars in their own right. I’ve been considering for some time since driving the car and spending time with the new XF, that really, I would be happy with either. It’s not like you get an A4 because you don’t make enough for the A6. If you chose the XE, pulling up in the car park and placing it next to an XF will not make you feel like an underachiever.

To sum up the external looks of the XE, it’s easily the best looking car in its class and were it not for the older sibling, would be the best looking car in the segment above. Really, I think the only thing that will beat the XE on looks will be the new Alfa Romeo Giulia, but that’s a hard call until I’ve seen it in the metal.

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Tame Geek Review | Volkswagen Golf GTE

He’s back. Regular contributor, and good friend of EngageSportMode, The Tame Geek is here again with a new review. This time he’s given us the exclusive on his test drive of Volkswagen’s new electric hybrid Golf GTE. Read his detailed thoughts below, to find out whether it hit the mark with our tech guru. 

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTE

After driving the MQB based Seat Leon when it launched and soon after, it’s posh sister the Audi A3, there was one more car in that group I needed to drive, the Golf. Well, the Tame Geek can never be accused of doing things by halves, I have now, not only gotten my hands on two of the latest generation Golfs but most importantly, on the most interesting Golf since the GTI W12-650. The Golf GTE.

Ok, so quick note, from the line above there. Yes, I’ve driven two Golfs recently, the GTD and the GTE. Why no review on the GTD? Well, honestly, It’s a great car and the engine gives a spirited level of performance for something that is designed to give people with company cars a bit of fun.

The GTE however is a car I’ve wanted to get my hands on since it was announced last year and since it’s posh sister, the A3 e-tron hit the road. The Golf GTE is a bit of a big deal for VW, being the first sub £100,000 hybrid they have realised and the car that will lead the way in an electrification of the entire range of models.

Being both a car and a technology showcase means that this review is going to get split in to some different sections than usual. Firstly, We’re going to cover how it works and then we’re going to cover how you use it.

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTE

Looks complicated? It is.

How it works
The Golf GTE has two forms of propulsion, a 1.4 litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine developing 148 bhp and an electric motor putting out 103 bhp. When these two work together, they have a peak output of 201 horsepower and an 258 lb-ft of torque. Speaking of that peak power, it delivers a car that can get to 62 mph in 7.6 seconds and a top speed of 138 mph. (more…)

BMW i8 – Tame Geek First Drive and Review

How does he do it? We’re not quite sure, but our good friend The Tame Geek managed to get himself behind the wheel of the BMW i8 electric supercar for a test drive. We bring you his full thoughts that first premiered on his own website

BMW i8 Review 03

After having a great time in BMW’s electric (and somewhat eclectic) i3 I have been waiting for my turn in the full flavour behaviour i8. That day has come.

With the i8 receiving its formal UK launch, demo units of this £99,000 supercar have started arriving at dealerships and the good people at Cooper BMW Teesside were very kind to keep me in the loop.

It’s a busy time for BMW, with the i8 launched and the new M3 and M4 showing up on forecourts at the same time, it seems that BMW are tailoring to us speed freaks for the summer.

Back to the i8. Let’s cover this like we do with most Tame Geek reviews, in sections.

First up, technology and toys!

Let’s just take a second to have a look at another picture of the i8.

SONY DSC

On considerably closer inspection, you discover that the i8 looks good from every angle. The folds and creases make the body of the i8 seem like it’s what happens when a Transformer gets some alone time with spaceship.

The i8 is not subtle. Sat with a McLaren MP4-12C in front of it, these equally striking cars couldn’t look any more different. Both looking beautiful but with the i8 doing what the 12C could never do. Show you the future.

The i8 is the new halo model for BMW. In being so, the styling had to be extreme, yet efficient and aerodynamic. As you look at the i8, you can tell that the heart and soul of the designers has gone in to this car.

SONY DSC (more…)

Tame Geek Review – SEAT Leon FR 2.0 TDI

Some say he manages to get behind the wheel of more new cars than The Stig. All we know is he’s called The Tame Geek, and tonight he’s feeling all Catalonian.

2013 SEAT Leon FR 2.0 TDI 

2013 SEAT Leon FR 00

What! The Tame Geek is going to review another car from the Volkswagen Group? Yes, but hold on! This is important, as it’s actually some consumer advice too!

So, as these things often go, and act of providence brought this car to me and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity for a good long spin.

Having reviewed the new Audi A3 already, many would say what’s the difference considering they are both based on the MQB? Well the differences are subtle in some respects and vast in others. (more…)

The Tame Geek Reviews the Audi A5 Convertible

ESM likes Audis. So does our good friend, and contributor, The Tame Geek. So when he spotted the chance to take a spin in a new Audi A5 Convertible, he leapt at the chance like a startled gazelle.

Head on over to his site to check out what he thought of the drop-top Ingolstadt cruiser. To tempt you, here’s a photo of the svelte animal:

(Image courtest of tame-geek.co.uk)

(Image courtesy of tame-geek.co.uk)

Enjoy!

“Some say he’s wanted by the CIA, and that he sleeps upside down like a bat…

…all we know is he’s called The Tame Geek

Along with being a technology and gizmo expert,  he’s also rather good at being Jeremy Clarkson. Take a look at this video he submitted with this review of the Range Rover Evoque:

Uncanny isn’t it. And on that bombshell, goodnight!

Tame Geek Review – Range Rover Evoque

Tonight ESM would like to bring you a review from another member of the blogosphere, and good personal friend, The Tame Geek. In the same way that Top Gear has a “tame racing driver” the internet has its own Tame Geek. But along with liking all things techy and shiny, he does also have a soft spot for all things automotive.

He therefore decided to review of one of EngageSportMode’s favourite cars; the ESMCoTY2011 one in fact. The Range Rover Evoque. So, did it tickle his techy tastebuds, or leave him desperate for an upgrade? Read on:

An Evoqueative Drive

Some days the stars will align and you’ll get very lucky. This just so happened to be the situation that I found myself in, on a beautiful sunny day when I was handed the key to a brand-new Range Rover Evoque.

This was a dealer model SD4 2.2L Diesel Auto with almost every toy inside. But we will come back to the inside. First let’s start with the outside of the Evoque. The Evoque has to be one of the most dramatically design vehicles available to purchase today. This is true in both its five door and three door guise. I didn’t have the coupe; I had the five door to hand. (more…)