Tesla claims record at Laguna Seca in modified Model S

Tesla claims record at Laguna Seca in modified Model S

Soon afterwards, the inevitable happened as Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that a Model S would be heading to the racetrack as well to post a best lap time of its own.

Today, Tesla dropped the promised video of a 1:36.555 lap time around Laguna Seca, indicating that time is a full second faster than "the record for a four-door sedan". This is a full second faster than the 1:37.54 lap record set past year by Jaguar XE SV Project 8, which would indeed make the Tesla the fastest four-door sedan (electric or otherwise) around the 2.2-mile race track (3.5-km).

Commenting on the go-faster "Plaid" powertrain, expected in Tesla's 2020 Roadster, Elon Musk responded to a tweet with the powertrain's production timeline and the models on which it'll be available. This, while very much not ideal-nor safe-for a record attempt, could assist Tesla in tuning, getting whoever is driving the Model S used to the track, as well as help collect much-needed data to use in the future. According to subsequent tweets by Elon Musk, it is a new mode that uses not one, not two, but THREE motors.

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At first it was believed that Musk was challenging the Porsche Taycan's record-setting lap at the gruelling track, however confirmation from the track organisers indicated that Tesla had in fact booked in to take part in the annual Industry Pool laps where vehicles are but through their paces to test and tweak developments.

The onboard footage of the Model S' record lap run includes a secondary camera angle, in which a steering wheel which appears to be from the smaller Model 3 can be seen. Upgraded brakes and new suspension settings are also present, while our spies, who spotted the vehicle again today doing its first laps, told us that the auto was fitted with a roll cage as well (obviously, for safety reasons). The recent revelation, however, suggests that Tesla may indeed give Porsche a run for their money.

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