Tesla Vs Porsche?

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
tesla vs porsche

After Porsche’s Taycan secured its status as the fastest electric production vehicle ever to grace the Nürburgring, Tesla Motors was keen to steal the title. This evolving rivalry also resulted in Elon Musk tossing some light shade at the German manufacturer over its liberal use of the word “turbo.” What followed were some sedan-based lap records set by the American company at Laguna Seca, which was little more than a distraction from the main event while Tesla got its ducks in a row.

In Nürburg, Porsche’s Taycan Turbo S set the highly impressive time of 7 minutes and 42 seconds in August. The following month, Tesla starting running the Model S. This week, reports coming in from Germany claim the American manufacturer set an unofficial time of 7 minutes and 23 seconds. But there are issues with Tesla’s record-breaking run.

According to early accounts from Auto Motor und Sport, on-hand observers verified the time as accurate. While a gaggle of pro drivers — led by track veteran Thomas Mutsch — ran the Model S, many onlookers noted that the vehicles appeared to be wearing non-factory competition tires and new bodywork.

Tesla’s Laguna Seca runs also utilized a specially made Model S variant using a three-motor powertrain referred to as “Plaid” ( another Spaceballs reference). The system, which was originally intended for use in the revamped Tesla Roadster, is supposed to deliver quite a bit more oomph than existing powertrains, but would effectively nullify any production vehicle records the company was going for.

However, Electrek noted that Tesla is expected to bring various prototypes to test in Nürburg this month and may never have actually sought to break Porsche’s record. Auto Motor und Sport also mentioned that the company has several more weeks of testing scheduled at the track. But Musk has previously said there would be no updates for the Model S in the foreseeable future, making us wonder why the company bothered bringing modified versions of the car to Germany. Just to test the new powertrain?

Musk recently suggested that Plaid models could enter into production as early as next year, so it’s totally plausible. But that would also put Tesla’s lap record on a similar trajectory.

We’re curious as to what Tesla says next. It’s doubtful the company will proclaim itself as besting Porsche until Plaid models qualify as production vehicles, though it might still hype the run. Musk has been careful not to claim the Model S has official defeated the Taycan; he simply advised Porsche to be ready for the future.

“It’s a start,” the CEO tweeted on Tuesday. “We expect these track times to be beaten by the actual production 7 seat Model S Plaid variant that goes into production around Oct/Nov next year.”

[Images: Abu hasim.A/Shutterstock, Porsche]

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2 of 22 comments
  • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Sep 18, 2019

    Don't you guys read the news, from Germans themselves: www.teslarati.com/tesla-tsla-gets-deutsche-bank-bullish-note/

  • Dal20402 Dal20402 on Sep 19, 2019

    Musk is an annoying dou¢hebag. That doesn't mean he can't make a fast electric sedan. Looks like this powertrain has solved the cooling issues, at least for 7 1/2 minutes, and the carbon-ceramics are up to the task of stopping 5000 lbs of sedan and battery repeatedly. If tech bros want to spend $200k to get The Fastest One, they should knock themselves out. I just wish they'd stop acting like our local public streets were the Nürburgring.

  • MKizzy The Mazda 6 wagon needs to be brought here pronto. Sexy looks aside, it would look less out of place in Mazda's CUV lineup vs the sedan, and since Mazda wants to go "premium," wagon customers tend to be the most affluent (if Daimer-Benz is to be believed). My second choice is the attractive Hyundai i40 wagon, which would replace the defunct VW Sportwagon in the small/mid size wagon niche.
  • Carlson Fan GM needs new leadership. A 9000lb off-road vehicle???? Don't get that thing stuck in a remote area.Imagine if they had brought back the iconic K5 Blazer name and built something to compete with the Wrangler like Ford did with the Bronco. They could have offered that with an electric power train in addition to the gas models. Ford may have some quality issues right now but whoever is steering that ship knows what they are doing. The Bronco & Maverick where both brilliant ideas.
  • Carlson Fan "But it does give General Motors an opportunity to dangle a diesel in front of the faces of consumers and presumably one that yields better gas mileage than the 6.2-liter V8 they’d otherwise be buying."I'll take the 6.2 thank you. The diesel offers some advantages over gas if you use the truck for towing, lower total cost of ownership isn't one of them. I'll add in the gas engine offers better long term reliability & cold weather performance if you live where it snows like me.
  • Carrera The diesels built during the last 10-15 years, if kept stock, don't really stink at all.
  • MaintenanceCosts I keep finding myself drawn to the Fox PLCs, both the Thunderbird and the Mark VII. They really got the design right by 1980s standards. The cars were reasonably sized but didn't look dinky like the 1986 Eldorado, they were comfortable and drove pretty well, and they were available with a 302 (that even got non-asthmatic in the late years).When I bought my first car - a 1987 Taurus - I also thought about Aerobirds, but I decided (probably correctly, given the number of carpools I was part of) that I wanted four doors.