No matter what numbers you’re seeing related to Tesla Model S Plaid acceleration runs, there’s no doubt it’s crazy quick. In fact, even if it can’t always (or ever) pull off the numbers Tesla has “advertised,” it’s still arguably the quickest production car ever built, and its performance in the quarter-mile is outright ridiculous, especially for a big, heavy, four-door five-seat family hauler.
At any rate, Tesla says the Model S Plaid can rocket to 60 mph in as little as 1.99 seconds. Tesla specifically focused on this number to be able to say the car is the first to break the two-second barrier. At the Plaid delivery event, Elon Musk made it clear that Tesla designed and produced the Plaid to prove to the world that EVs are better than gas cars.
The 1.99-second claim includes rollout, and the conditions need to be just about perfect to actually pull it off. In reality, you can expect a Model S Plaid to hit 60 mph in a relatively lethargic 2.1 to 2.3 seconds.
Zero to 60 times are great since they give drivers an idea of the potential acceleration they’ll experience in daily driving without breaking the law or hitting the track. However, it’s too short of a distance to really prove a car’s performance, and there’s plenty of potential inconsistencies and margin for error when the performance time is mostly just based on the car’s initial launch.
The quarter-mile run has become more of a gold standard when it comes to measuring a car’s acceleration. Unlike Tesla’s 0-60 claim for the Plaid, it seems many drivers have been able to match the “advertised” quarter-mile time, and some have even beat it. The best time we’ve seen to date is 9.22 seconds, though we’ve seen many runs that are right around the mark.
In the video above, the Model S Plaid performs two runs at the Kentucky Dragway. Both have timeslips, which are shown in the video. As you’ll see, the runs come in at around 9.3 and 9.4 seconds. The YouTube channel said there was a previous run that was actually a bit better, but they didn’t get it on video. Whether or not that’s true doesn’t matter. The Model S Plaid has proven time and time again that it’s incredibly quick.
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