Tesla Model X review: running costs & insurance
The Tesla Model X is inescapably expensive to buy and insure, but running costs should be lower than the equivalent petrol-powered SUV
|Insurance group||Warranty||Service intervals||Annual company-car tax cost (20%/40%)|
|50||4yrs/50,000 miles||1yr/12,500 miles||From £412/£823|
The Tesla Model X is an expensive car – that’s the long and short of it. Prices start at over £90,000, which is pricey for retail buyers, even by Range Rover standards. Monthly repayments aren’t cheap, either, and Tesla seldom offers interest-free finance.
Business users, however, might find the Tesla a more affordable proposition. For the lucky few whose company-car allowance will stretch to the Model X's lofty price, it’s well worth considering, if only for the huge savings you’ll make on company-car tax; the Tesla range-topper falls into the lowest 2% Benefit-in-Kind (BiK) bracket. That's if you can convince your employer to take the plunge on a massive left-hand drive only electric SUV; Tesla decided to drop the right-hand drive Model X in May 2023.
Regardless, the Model X (like all EVs) is exempt from paying the London Congestion Charge and can enter the city’s Ultra-Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) for no fee, too.
Tesla Model X insurance group
All versions of the Tesla Model X fall into the highest insurance group – as do many performance SUVs – and therefore will be expensive to insure. Make sure you get a quote before buying.
The Tesla Model X is covered by a four year/50,000-mile warranty, which is supplied by AXA insurance rather than Tesla itself, and it can be extended up to eight years. The batteries are covered by an eight-year/unlimited-mileage warranty.
A lot of electric cars have long service intervals, since there’s less to check, as their motors have far fewer moving parts than a diesel or petrol engine. However, Tesla recommends an inspection every 12,500 miles or 12 months; a routine interval for most combustion-engined cars.
Tesla also recommends that you connect the Model X to your home wi-fi in order to get the fastest download times for automatic software updates, which will see certain functions and systems in the car changing and improving overnight – just as your phone does when you update the operating system.
Like all fully electric cars, the Model X is currently exempt from road tax (VED) until 2025. After this it will probably be liable for a fee – including the "luxury" supplement for cars costing £40,000 or more.
According to the latest industry figures, the Tesla Model X will retain roughly 66% of its value over three years and 36,000 miles – though that figure may drop now Tesla has made the decision not to sell the Model X in right-hand drive. Either way, private buyers must be prepared to lose around £40,000 – if not more – over that period. The same is true of the Model X’s rivals, of course.
In This Review
- 1VerdictThe Tesla Model X is a huge SUV with a variety of interior seating layouts, astonishing performance and extensive real-world range
- 2Range, battery & chargingThe Tesla Model X has great real-world range, and access to the brand's Supercharger network is a boon for long-distance driving
- 3Running costs - currently readingThe Tesla Model X is inescapably expensive to buy and insure, but running costs should be lower than the equivalent petrol-powered SUV
- 4Electric motor, drive & performanceThe Tesla Model X sets the benchmark for performance in an electric SUV, but rivals are more fun to drive
- 5Interior & comfortThe Tesla Model X's interior can only be described as a tech-feast; interior quality is lacking, though
- 6Practicality & boot spaceThe Tesla Model X is huge inside and can be specified with one of three different seating configurations
- 7Reliability & safetyWith cutting-edge safety aids, the Model X boasts great crash test results; build quality is a concern, though
- 8Owner reviewAnthony Wootton from Hampshire shares his ownership experience of the Tesla Model X