• New Tesla warranty boasts infinite mile coverage on drive unit
  • Warranty lasts for up to 8 years, same as car's battery warranty
  • New warranty is fully transferable, retroactive to earlier Model S units

The fully electric Tesla Model S sedan is now available with an infinite mile warranty. That's the latest from the automaker, which says that the new warranty now covers the drive unit -- essentially the car's engine -- for the same 8-year, unlimited-mile term as the battery warranty.

The new 8-year, unlimited-mile warranty replaces Tesla's current drive-unit warranty, which stands at 4 years or 50,000 miles. The difference is, of course, substantial. Drivers who own current Model S sedans don't need to feel left out: The automaker plans to make the warranty retroactive to all Model S units purchased since the car went on sale in late 2012.

Better yet, Tesla says that the new 8-year, unlimited-mile warranty will be fully transferable to other owners, so future Model S owners who purchase a used Model S several years from now will still get access to the same warranty that the car had when it was new. While transferable warranties are common, many other automakers that offer long-term coverage typically limit warranty coverage for future owners.

The announcement of the new infinite mile coverage comes on the heels of several recent reports of Tesla quality issues, including a highly publicized one from Consumer Reports. With the new warranty in place, Tesla likely hopes to quell any fears about these problems, with company founder Elon Musk noting that "this should have been our policy from the beginning of the Model S program."

What it means to you: The new Tesla warranty will likely make owners breathe a little easier after recent reports of quality issues.

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Doug DeMuro has a wide range of automotive industry experience, from work at a Ferrari dealership to a manager for Porsche North America. A lifelong car enthusiast, Doug's eclectic vehicle purchases include a Porsche 911 Turbo, an E63 AMG wagon, an old Range Rover and a Mercedes Benz G-wagen.

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