I originally planned to pit the Tesla Model S against a Bic lighter, but then I decided it wouldn’t be fair to Tesla. Tesla is a prestigious company and they deserve to be compared to something with a little more class.
Logically, I chose a Zippo instead.
Tesla Model S vs Zippo Lighter
|Tesla Model S||Zippo Lighter|
|Annual maintenance costs||A lot||$10|
|Easy to lose at parties||No||Yes|
Ultimately, the Tesla Model S and a Zippo are equally efficient at starting fires, but if you’re not one for delayed gratification, the Zippo is your best bet. All you have to do is flip the hatch and flick the wheel—simple. In order to light up the Tesla Model S, however, you have to go through the whole ordeal of plugging it in to faulty charger (which does come standard) and hoping that you come across some spark-happy metal while traveling at high speeds. Kind of sounds like a lot of work if you ask me.
If you’re strapped for cash, the Zippo is once again the more beneficial option. It has an MSRP in the ballpark of $20, which may seem like a high price to pay just for fire, but when you compare it to the $69,900 MSRP of the Tesla Model S, it’s actually pretty reasonable.
Just because a Zippo gets the job done quicker and is significantly more affordable, does not automatically mean that it’s the top contender in this matchup, however. The Tesla Model S does possess a few qualities that the Zippo doesn’t. For one, it’s much more difficult to lose a Tesla Model S at a party. I can confidently say that I’ve never seen anyone whip another person’s Model S out of their pocket to light a cigarette. Score one for Tesla.
If you don’t count the electric bill or the cost of rebuilding the burned down wall in your garage where the charger used to hang, the Model S is also cheaper to fuel than a Zippo. As it’s a fully electric car, you don’t have to worry about spending another dime at the pumps. A Zippo on the other hand requires a monthly fill-up that can cost upwards of $10 for the year.
Bottom line: When all the capabilities of both the Tesla Model S and a Zippo are taken into account, the Zippo seems to be the better of the two options for those seeking fire. It may be easier to lose a Zippo, but even if you lost and replaced 3,495 Zippos, you would still have more money that you would if you purchased a Tesla Model S.
Winner of the CarDebate: Zippo Lighter