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Lucid’s Tri-Motor Retakes Tesla’s Plaid Record at Laguna Seca

Hawk

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From "Teslarati." Scroll down for the video::

And from "autoevolution"

And from "electrek"
 
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WillChen

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Musk just mentioned 1:30.30 for plaid that would come later and around end of next year. No additional details.
 

hmp10

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Tesla has already opened up orders for the Plaid on its website. At this point, there are no changes to the interior indicated and very minor changes to the sheetmetal. Whether it will get an updated interior by the time of production a year hence is an open question, I guess.

Interestingly, the 1,100 hp is about what Lucid gets out of its dual-motor Dream. It'll be interesting to see if the Plaid really can peel a full second off the Dream's quarter mile time.

No mention at all about Project Palladium.
 

NorcalEV

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It is pretty obvious the Plaid announcement today is a direct response to Lucid's tri motor.
It will be interesting to see how Lucid responds with their tri motor 1/4 mile time and their Laguna Seca lap time.
 

BlindPass

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It is pretty obvious the Plaid announcement today is a direct response to Lucid's tri motor.
A direct response? Can direct response to something not revealed? It’s faster than the dual Air, at least at what both companies are claiming.

I wonder what traction assist they’re using? whether that was originally planned, or did they add that in early September?

Also, this fool’s errand of performance is why Lucids easiest path is carving out the luxury niche
 

BlindPass

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I’m excited to drive it...over a year from now.

With it being delayed by a year, are they pushing it back to put the base Roadster specs into the Plaid? We’ve been told the Founders Roadster is well below 1.9 and well over 200 mph, so there’s room.

After Lucid I had expected Plaid to be around 2 seconds in 0-60 and over 500 miles based on the long rumored Roadster numbers of 1.8 being conservative.

I do wonder how much normal Tesla gamesmanship. Like when they “beat” the Taycan, when in reality much of the difference is in the marketing approach. That 2.3 0-60 of the current MS is just a little more real than the Dodge Demon times, and the range advantage oversold.

What modes and prep time is needed for 0-60 under 2 seconds?

I think it’s likely Tesla has a battery advantage, although the car itself I’m not sold on. In some ways we know even less than the Air, if that’s possible. Will $150k come with coat hooks? Arm rests?
 
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WillChen

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What modes and prep time is needed for 0-60 under 2 seconds?
I wonder about this as well. It needs to be repeatable and require little prep time. I would definitely not be a fan if someone needs to drive around 60 minutes and press an “insane” mode change to run it for... 1 time only.
 

BlindPass

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I wonder about this as well. It needs to be repeatable and require little prep time. I would definitely not be a fan if someone needs to drive around 60 minutes and press an “insane” mode change to run it for... 1 time only.
Maybe we’ll know by 2022.
Tesla has been championing the Plaid for along time it seems. We still don’t know much other than it seemingly has been upgraded to base level Roadster performance for only 40k more than current S.

I’m intrigued, although that could mean the Roadster is going to be even better, and the way things are going it’s going to be 2022.

Seriously, the vaporware like wait is similar to brand new cars from a startup, but for a model that’s been out for 8 years.

Is the delay due to needing to one-up Lucid? Is a redesign actually in the works for all Model S?
 

hmp10

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Will $150k come with coat hooks? Arm rests?
Not according to the Tesla website order configurator. Of course, it's possible that they are using existing graphics just as a placeholder for decisions yet to be locked down, as Lucid is apparently doing with its configurator.

However, if the configurator is to be taken seriously, the Plaid is going to be virtually indistinguishable from the Long Range and Performance Models S appearance-wise, both inside and out . . . in other words, long in the tooth and lacking in space and basic passenger conveniences that any Honda would have.

Both Lucid and Tesla are caught up in a game of leap frog that's causing both companies to go off half-cocked. I expected as much from Tesla; I hoped for more from Lucid.
 

BlindPass

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Not according to the Tesla website order configurator. Of course, it's possible that they are using existing graphics just as a placeholder for decisions yet to be locked down, as Lucid is apparently doing with its configurator.

However, if the configurator is to be taken seriously, the Plaid is going to be virtually indistinguishable from the Long Range and Performance Models S appearance-wise, both inside and out . . . in other words, long in the tooth and lacking in space and basic passenger conveniences that any Honda would have.

Both Lucid and Tesla are caught up in a game of leap frog that's causing both companies to go off half-cocked. I expected as much from Tesla; I hoped for more from Lucid.
Sigh, yes.

I mean, are armrests, coat hooks, and recessed footwells THAT expensive to include? Add in some outsourced things like HUD, vented seats etc.

Tesla doesn’t care imo, but that’s low hanging fruit for Lucid to differentiate themselves.
 

hmp10

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Rumors still abound that the Fremont factory is being retooled to handle updates of the Model S and Model X, perhaps related to Project Palladium. It's interesting that Tesla added the Plaid S to its website today -- simply by adding one additional check box -- but didn't add the Plaid X. The addition of the Plaid S was so inconspicuous that I at first overlooked it when my brother called to tell me it had been added.

It really does look like this was a knee-jerk attempt on the fly to parry the Lucid tease from Monday about the tri-motor Air. I have a feeling Tesla has no idea yet how it's going to get 520 miles of range out of the car, and it's interesting that none of the many observers who haunt Laguna Seca and Sonoma Raceway have reported seeing a Plaid do anything that looks like the kind of times Tesla posted today on its website.

Last week I was released earlier than planned from the hospital where I had hip replacement surgery. Instead of asking my planned ride to leave work early, I took an Uber home. The driver showed up in a Honda Accord. I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to get in and out of the back seat and how comfortable I was on the ride home. It would have been a very different story with my Model S.

I don't care if Tesla puts four motors into a Model S and straps two rocket thrusters on its tail. I will not consider another one until Tesla addresses the inexplicable shortcomings in basic comfort and convenience features that still plague this car eight years into production.
 

WillChen

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Cutting a full 6 seconds off on the Laguna Seca raceway from previous plaid figures while keeping it in a street legal production form seems like a very difficult task to accomplish with the same chassis, equal/weaker drag and some aero. With just 1100 horsepower, I am very curious how it is done. I recall the rigidity is weaker on current model S design so I wonder if it can take on 1800 horses while building a car that lasts. It’s not cutting 6 seconds from a 2 minutes run and cant be a teaser car similar to what Ford put out just for show.
 
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BlindPass

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Cutting a full 6 seconds off on the Laguna Seca raceway from previous plaid figures while keeping it in a street legal production form seems like a very difficult task to accomplish with the same chassis, equal/weaker drag and some aero. With just 1100 horsepower, I am very curious how it is done. I recall the rigidity is weaker on current model S design so I wonder if it can take on 1800 horses while building a car that lasts. It’s not cutting 6 seconds from a 2 minutes run and cant be a teaser car similar to what Ford put out just for show.
That’s what the extra year is for! To design the S into performing like the Roadster.

More seriously, may be redesign is coming, but they don’t want to further Osborne? Imo the S sales are so low that it doesn’t matter
 

hmp10

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That’s what the extra year is for! To design the S into performing like the Roadster.
I think the Model S is quickly becoming pointless in the Tesla line up. Besides owning a Model S, I have spent extensive time in my brother's Model 3 and done several test drives in the Model X and the Model Y.

If you want comfortable seating positions all around, good interior storage, up-to-date features, and performance that was Ferrari territory not too many years ago, the Model Y is the best Tesla for you. It matches and even beats the Model X on some of these scores.

If you want ultimate performance, jaw-dropping looks, and incredible range, the Roadster II is on the way.

Unless Tesla does a ground-up redesign of the Model S, it just comes with too many compromises. It had subpar torsional rigidity in 2012, and the gap has widened since. It has poor interior seating positions in the rear for adults. It lacks basic convenience features most sedan buyers expect. An interior that once gave off vibes of chic minimalism now just looks cheap.

It was a ground-breaking car in 2012 that changed the automotive landscape across the globe. Trying to turn it into a boy racer in its dotage feels kind of like putting red lipstick and costume jewelry on grandma for one last night on the town.
 

WillChen

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Trying to turn it into a boy racer in its dotage feels kind of like putting red lipstick and costume jewelry on grandma for one last night on the town.
Can’t agree more. Almost feel like I am watching the story of a riced Honda Civic with big multi turbo setup and nos.
 

BlindPass

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I think the Model S is quickly becoming pointless in the Tesla line up. Besides owning a Model S, I have spent extensive time in my brother's Model 3 and done several test drives in the Model X and the Model Y.

If you want comfortable seating positions all around, good interior storage, up-to-date features, and performance that was Ferrari territory not too many years ago, the Model Y is the best Tesla for you. It matches and even beats the Model X on some of these scores.

If you want ultimate performance, jaw-dropping looks, and incredible range, the Roadster II is on the way.

Unless Tesla does a ground-up redesign of the Model S, it just comes with too many compromises. It had subpar torsional rigidity in 2012, and the gap has widened since. It has poor interior seating positions in the rear for adults. It lacks basic convenience features most sedan buyers expect. An interior that once gave off vibes of chic minimalism now just looks cheap.

It was a ground-breaking car in 2012 that changed the automotive landscape across the globe. Trying to turn it into a boy racer in its dotage feels kind of like putting red lipstick and costume jewelry on grandma for one last night on the town.
Sales numbers support this. The X too.

We looked at the Y. If they offered a 80k version that has a minimalistic but not cost-cut interior, we would have bought one to hold us over until the next gen EVs are out.

Punting Plaid S down the road once again, without redesign and little details outside of increased performance specs to base Roadster level?

One can easily create a narrative that Tesla isn’t interested in actually getting Plaids to production, let alone selling them at a profitable volume, as much being able to reference what it will be as though it’s actually one-upping competition. Remember in 2019 when Plaid put the Taycan in its place? Lol. Like Tesla using autopilot, then clarifying to FSD, as selling points for years before it’s actually a thing.

I fully expect that if Lucid announces a tri motor that’s quicker, Tesla will announce an increase in performance before now and when any of us can drive one.
 

hmp10

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All Tesla did yesterday was add a Plaid tab to the Model S order screen. None of the graphics changed. The wheel/tire options, the color choices, the interior options are all identical whether selecting the Long Range, Performance, or Plaid versions. The dash layout of the Plaid is the same one that's been around since 2012. There are no aero-enhancements shown. Either the Plaid is going to be visually identical to the current Model S, or this was a hurry-up maneuver to counter something that happened unexpectedly. (Now what could that be . . . ?)

Lucid announced a 517-mile range based on credible FEV testing by a third party. Tesla gave an "estimated" range of 520+ miles, based on nothing.

Lucid announced a 9.912 second quarter mile based on electronic track times observed by several journalists. Tesla gave a vague quarter mile time of "under 9.0 seconds", based on nothing.

Lucid announced a sub-2.5-second 0-60 time based on electronic track times observed by several journalists. Tesla gave a "sub-2.0-second" time, based on nothing.

I am pretty sure we would have heard nothing at Battery Day about the Model S Plaid had Lucid not put out the tri-motor teaser the day before. The Plaid has been in development for well over a year. If they are now taking actual orders for it without revealing specific performance information as they do on all the other models on their configurator, it means the Plaid program is not yet where Tesla wants/needs it to be in light of Lucid's recent arrival on the scene.

In that sense, the Plaid announcement yesterday was a vaporware release and nothing more.
 
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