New Models

Tesla readying tri-motor 'Plaid' powertrain

Thought the Ludicrous Model S was fast? It's about to get faster, with Tesla planning a punchier powertrain.
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Tesla will continue to develop on the Model S and Model X's already-impressive acceleration figures, preparing a three-motor powertrain to deliver 'Plaid' performance.

The current Model S P100D with Ludicrous Plus will hit 60mph (97km/h) in 2.28 seconds, as tested by Motor Trend in the USA. That makes it one of the fastest-ever accelerating production cars.

"The only thing beyond Ludicrous is Plaid," Tesla founder and boss Elon Musk tweeted overnight, confirming the powertrain will have three motors.

"Plaid powertrain is about a year away from production & applies to S, X & Roadster, but not 3 or Y. Will cost more than our current offerings, but less than competitors," he elaborated.

This isn't the first we've heard of a tri-motor Tesla. When the Roadster was launched, Elon Musk promised it would have three motors and hit 60mph in 1.9 seconds from standstill.

A prototype running the new powertrain has already lapped Laguna Seca and appears to now be lapping the Nurburgring, although Musk hasn't confirmed whether the car Tesla has sent to Germany is running the new powertrain.