Tesla Model S now 'Ludicrously' fast

Tesla Model S

The Tesla Model S can now shift its all-electric body from standstill to 100km/h in a ludicrously fast 3.0 seconds.

Fittingly, that is the name – Ludicrous Mode – given to a fresh and fast option as part of a revised Model S range available for local delivery in November.

The flagship P85D is priced from $148,000 plus on-road costs, but becomes the P90D after optioning a new $4100 larger battery pack – as the model designation suggests, size grows from 85kWh to 90kWh, boosting the 491kW range on a single charge to 520km.

Choosing P90D is mandatory before another $13,500 buys Ludicrous Mode that lowers the large sedan’s 100km/h sprint by three tenths and allows it to cross the quarter mile 20 per cent faster in just 10.9sec.

It’s all in the software, with the twin electric motors (193kW front, 375kW rear) placing a bit more pressure on the all-wheel drive system to grip and go.

Even at $165,600, the Tesla Model S P90D is a whole lotta electric sedan that can easily outsprint a BMW 550i ($159,900) that gets a lesser result from its 330kW/650Nm 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 (0-100km/h in 4.6sec).

Further down the range, the 90kWh extended range battery is also available as an option to turn the single-motor, 278kW Model S 85 ($114,200) into the 90 (plus $4100).

It isn’t exactly slow with its 5.6sec 0-100km/h, though choosing optional all-wheel drive (plus $6800) ups grunt to 311kW and lowers that time to 4.4sec.

Option the extended battery pack with the AWD system and the resulting range is the highest of any Model S – about 560km, up from 528km.

At the bottom of the pile, the base Model S 70 now costs $100,100 plus on-road costs with a 235kW electric motor, 70kWh battery pack and 420km range. Choosing optional all-wheel drive (plus $6800) lowers the sprint time from 5.8sec to 5.4sec and offers a slightly higher 442km range.

The Californian company used the announcement to also reiterate its Model X SUV and Model 3 small car are also on the way, but bigger news for enthusiasts is the confirmation the new Roadster will be here within four years.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk let slip that Ludicrous Mode won’t be the fastest mode available on that model, though.

“There is of course one speed faster than ludicrous,” he announced. “But that is reserved for the next generation Roadster in 4 years: maximum plaid.”

It seems an electric car with sub-3.0sec performance isn’t far away. Bring it on…

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