The Optimal Tesla Fleet

By Tyler Klose · Nov 25, 2019

Today, you can visit and design a Model X for as much as $127,490 or a Model 3 for as low as $30,315 (with potential savings). Tesla offers two sedans. The Model S is the higher-end sedan and the Model 3 is the lower-end sedan. They also offer two SUVs, the Model X and the Model Y. Beyond the model, the paint color, wheels, interior color, interior layout, and self-driving capability all play a role in determining the final price of a Tesla. In between the most expensive Model X and the most affordable Model 3, just how many different Teslas you can design?


Let’s start by considering each Tesla model independently. We could consider the Roadster, but it’s not as interesting as the others because there are only 2 options. You can reserve the Roadster for $50,000, or the Founders Series Roadster for a mere $250,000. At the time of this article, neither of these pre-order Roadsters can be customized so we’ll exclude “The World’s Fastest Production Car” for now.

Tesla count: 0

Paint and Full Self-Driving Capability

All the Tesla models come in one of five paint colors (Pearl White Multi-Coat, Solid Black, Midnight Silver Metallic, Deep Blue Metallic, Red Multi-Coat) and have the option to come equipped with full self-driving capability. This added capability comes at a $6,000 premium. Although it can’t completely drive itself… yet... it provides the hardware to do so once the necessary features are released via an over-the-air software update. Between the 5 paint variations, and the option for full self-driving, Tesla gives us an initial 10 variations of each model.

Tesla count: 5 x 2 ( everything else ) = …


In terms of customization options, the Model S is less interesting than in the past. Tesla used to offer different models with varying degrees of range and performance. I suppose since their battery technology improved and/or cost of producing these batteries has decreased (or maybe Tesla found themselves dealing with a gnarly combinatorial explosion), they now only offer two options: Long Range and Performance.

Tesla count: 10 x (1 + 1) = 20

Wheels, Interior & Drivetrain

The exterior and interior options differ a bit depending on whether or not you go with the Long Range or Performance option so I’ll start with the Long Range option. There are three wheel options: 19” Silver Wheels, 19” Sonic Carbon Slipstream Wheels, and 21” Sonic Carbon Twin Turbine Wheels


Tesla count: 10 x (3 + 1) = 40


There are 3 options available for Premium Interior: All Black, Black and White, and Cream.


Tesla count: 10 x ((3 x 3) + 1) = 100


If you look at the options for the Performance version of the Model S, not much changes with the exception of the interior options. The All Black interior and Black and White interior are available with Carbon Fiber Décor as well as Ash Wood Décor.


Tesla count: 10 x (9 + (3 x 5)) = 240


When looking at the Model 3, we start to get a few more options for the car. Like the Model S, there are two Dual Motor All-Wheel Drive options: Long Range and Performance. Unlike the Model S, there is an option for Rear-Wheel Drive called Standard Range Plus.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (1 + 1 + 1)) = 270


Let’s jump into the entry model, the Standard Range Plus. Unlike the Model S, this time we are only given two wheel options: 18” Aero Wheels and 19” Sport Wheels.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (2 + 1 + 1)) = 280


The Standard Range Plus has only two options available for interior: All Black and Black & White.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + ((2 x 2) + 1 + 1)) = 300


The Long Range Model 3 is not much more interesting than the Standard Range Plus Model 3. It includes Premium Interior, but doesn’t provide any additional options for customization.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + (2 x 2) + 1)) = 330


Moving on up to the Performance version of the Model 3, the only option available is the 20” Gray Performance Wheels. The website shows two wheels, but one of those is disabled. I wonder if this is a bug or if the first option is just out of stock. As before, there are two options for interior color.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + (1 x 2))) = 340


Next up is Tesla’s high-end SUV offering: the Model X. Like the Model S, the Model Y comes in two versions: Long Range and Performance


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + 2) + (1 + 1))  = 360


The Long Range version of the Model Y has three wheel options: 20” Silver Wheels, 20” Two-Tone Slipstream Wheels, and 22” Onyx Black Wheels.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + 2) + ((3) + 1))  = 380


In terms of interior, the Model Y has the same three options as the Long Range version of the Model S (All Black, Black and White, and Cream).


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + 2) + ((3 x 3) + 1))  = 440


Unique to the Model Y, there is a new option for Interior Layout. With the Model Y you can have either a five, six, or seven seat layout.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + 2) + ((3 x 3 x 3) + 1))  = 620


Like the Model S, the only change we see between the Long Range and Performance offering are the two additional interior options: All Black and Black & White with Carbon Fiber Décor.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + 2) + (27 + (3 x 5 x 3)))  = 1,060


Tesla’s newest offering is the Model Y. If Tesla’s lineup was an SAT question it would look something like this: The Model S is to the Model 3 as the Model X is to the _______. As an aside, I don’t think it’s accidental that these together spell out S3XY. Ha ha! Good one Elon!


Similar to the Model 3, the Model Y has 3 options. There is a sole Rear-Wheel Drive option: Long Range. There are two Dual Motor All-Wheel Drive options: Long Range and Performance.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + 2) + (27 + 45) + (1 + 1 + 1))  = 1,090


There are few differences between these 3 versions of the Model Y. There is one exception in that the Performance version only has one option for wheels instead of two. The Long Range versions can either come equipped with 18” Aero Wheels or 19” Sport Wheels. The Performance version can only come equipped with 20” Performance Wheels.


Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + 2) + (27 + 45) + (2 + 2 + 1))  = 1,110


Other than that, each version has two options for interior color (All Black, Black and White) and two options for interior layout (Five Seat Interior, Seven Seat Interior)

Tesla count: 10 x ((9 + 15) + (4 + 4 + 2) + (27 + 45) + ((2 x 2) x (2 + 2 + 1)))  = 1,260

A Hexawise Model

And there we have it, there are 1,260 different ways to design a Tesla. I couldn’t help myself, but see what this would look like as a Hexawise variation model.


Hexawise Tesla variation model


A healthy serving of constraints are needed to ensure Hexawise only generates valid Tesla configurations. After ensuring that combinations such as the Standard Range Plus option is only available for the Model 3, and the six seat interior layout is only available for the Model X, Hexawise generated 47 different Tesla test configurations that cover all 285 pairings of possible options. This means you can perform quality assurance on interactions of Tesla features with just 47 of the 1,260 possible cars.


This means that when you buy each Hexawise generated configuration, and store your Tesla QA fleet in your 47-car garage, at least one of your Teslas will have each valid pair of options. 


Feel like driving a Deep Blue Metallic Tesla with Cream interior? You have a car for that!


Need to seat seven people, but also want to show off the carbon fiber décor? You have a car for that! 


Going on a long trip and want full self-driving to overtake slower moving traffic? Yup! You have a car that!

Related: How to Pack More Coverage Into Fewer Software Tests - How a Book Club Impacted Our Software Development Practices

Blog cover photo by Afif Kusuma, interior photo by Bram Van Oost