So to start, I am totally down with the idea of electric cars; I think that the utility of them around town would outweigh for many people the range problems for longer trips*. I personally try to drive relatively little; I've put an average of well under 5,000 mi/year on my car. I probably shouldn't say this, but Tesla is the answer to "what's your dream car?" security question on some website. Believe me when I say I don't have a bias against electric cars.
(* There was some discussion about this in the previous thread which I almost participated in, but didn't. Ballpark figures for the Tesla seem to be an hour of charge for about every three hours of driving. Personally, this is enough of an increase in stopping time compared to what I currently do on long trips that I really wouldn't want to do a long trip in one.)
But... I've read Musk's comments and both responses on the NY Times blog (ironically I haven't actually read the original article), and to be honest I didn't really find Musk's blog post all that convincing. And this is after a bit of me wanting to see the NY Times review get nailed to the wall.
For instance, Musk claims that the logs show that the heat was turned up when the reporter said he turned it down. But within 20 minutes of the point at which Musk says proves his point, the temperature was turned down -- dramatically. The NY Times article doesn't really give a precise "I turned down the heat at milepost 182"; that's a mileage that Musk seems to have derived from the following quote from the original article:
As I crossed into New Jersey some 15 miles later, I noticed that the estimated range was falling faster than miles were accumulating. At 68 miles since recharging, the range had dropped by 85 miles, and a little mental math told me that reaching Milford would be a stretch. I began following Teslaâ(TM)s range-maximization guidelines, which meant dispensing with such battery-draining amenities as warming the cabin.
But Musk doesn't say how he arrived at that number in his blog post; he just asserts that's the point at which the reviewer says. IMO it's not too much of a stretch to think that the above review is imprecise enough that skirting that arrow over just 20 miles to where the temperature was lowered could be what actually happened.
This point in particular sits very poorly with me on Musk's side; I really feel like he was looking for faults with the data hard enough that he was probably prone to find ones that weren't actually there.
Note that I'm not by any means absolving Broder. I think that this story still has a bit more to play out until it reaches its resolution (if it ever does, without phone calls). But I really do feel like the "oh the NY Times got served!" people are really jumping to conclusions, even given Musk's data. I've been burned too many times my assuming things when they looked so clear before.