German researcher Lars Thomsen is one of the world’s most renowned researchers in the fields of energy, mobility and smart grids. Thomsen belongs to the ardent supporters of electrification and wanted to prove in practice that this technology has progressed so much that you can do with such vehicles endless journeys.
So he designed an epic route, where he would cross the US with his private Tesla Model 3, starting in New York and heading for Los Angeles and the west coast of California. In this adventure, Thomsen was with him, who lives permanently in Switzerland, his wife Betty Legkler and his daughter Robin.
We are, of course, talking about a distance of 4,560 kilometres, which the vast majority of planes use, so we understand the difficulties of the operation for an electric model.
For the difficult venture to succeed, the driver was regularly changing, while most of the journey took place with the Tesla on autopilot, so it simply needs control of its functions. See below an interesting Time Lapse video that shows how the new distance record became a reality.
Description from YouTube channel futurematters :
The Ultimate Family Roadtrip
How a Swiss family took their Tesla Model 3 on the epic Cannonball Run from New York City to Los Angeles and set a new record for crossing the United States from east to west in an electric vehicle.
Starting in New York City at “Red Ball Garage” on 31st and 3rd Avenue on Friday, July 12th at 11:02 pm EDT, they arrived at the Portofino Hotel in Redondo Beach at 08:12 pm PDT on Sunday, July 14th, making the 2’835 mile (4’562 km) trip in 48 hours and 10 minutes. To our knowledge, beating the previous record time for EVs by 2 hours and 6 minutes. The average speed of 58.9 mph (94,8 km/h) included 19 stops at Tesla Superchargers on the way. The overwhelming majority of the trip was driven by using the Tesla Autopilot, including the “navigate on autopilot” functionalities. The drive was documented with a start-to-finish time-lapse video and with the time-stamped supercharging protocol.
The Cannonball Run can be done either way between the Red Ball Garage in NYC and the Portofino Hotel in Redondo Beach, CA. The Thomsen Family Team drove the southern route through Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona to California.
The total distance driven was 2’835 miles, including access to and from Tesla supercharger locations. On the trip, we consumed a total of 832 kWh of energy, averaging 293 Wh/mi (182 Wh/km). The trip was driven with three drivers, cabin temperature set at around 70 degrees, AC on at 100% of the time. Throughout the run car carried about 840 lbs (380 kg) payload in passengers, luggage and supplies. The total charging cost amounts to US $ 136.26.
We drove the trip in an unmodified 2018 Tesla Model 3 LR RWD (US version, VIN 32XX), which we purchased in January 2018. The car drove on its factory 19’ tires and was unmodified. It had about 11’500 miles on the odometer at the start. The car is owned by the Thomsen family and had been used in Europe between May 2018 and June 2019, then reimported into the US in June 2019 and re-registered in New Jersey. This car was the very first Tesla Model 3 registered in Switzerland, roughly a year before the first European versioned cars arrived. It was a “local hero” in the time, often test-driven and cited in the press throughout Europe.
The drivers were Lars Thomsen (a future researcher for corporate foresight), his wife, musician, and entrepreneur Betty Legler and their daughter Robin Jedi Thomsen, an 18-year-old college student who obtained her driver’s license just two weeks prior to the trip.
The Thomsen family have been Tesla customers since 2012 and have owned various Tesla models. When planning their 2019 summer vacation, the idea of a family road trip through the US came up and quickly evolved to crossing the country on the legendary Cannonball Run.
Update: Records are made to be broken. We acknowledge that our record was broken by Kyle Conner on July 30th, 2019 with a new record time of 45 hours and 16 minutes in a similar Model 3 with lowered suspension and 18′ Aero Wheels. We congratulate Kyle for his success. We will remain the last EV Cannonball Run record holder that made the trip staying within legal speed limits.