Now even though Top Gear as a whole got a bad reputation when it comes to testing Teslas, after the Roadster fiasco that Jeremy Clarkson devised, but now that he is out of the picture, the show has a far more balanced, even positive view of the brand. Chris Harris is the heavy-hitting Top Gear UK presenter these days and he’s expressed only mostly very positive views of Tesla.
He recently talked about the Tesla Model S potentially achieving a sub-7 minute lap time at the Nurburgring and its seemingly unbelievable sprint time from standstill to sixty. Tesla says that time will dip below the two-second mark, making the Model S Plaid a quicker accelerating car than most racing cars. Harris says that the current quickest Model S is already uncomfortable for some occupants when you really step on it, so the Plaid and Plaid+ models will surely be too much for some people’s bodies to withstand.
The Model S P100D can already pull over 1G when accelerating hard, or exert more force pushing you back against your seat than it can muster to push you out of the seat under full braking. It’s almost as much as the maximum lateral G that it can pull at the limit of grip through a corner - that’s quite impressive, but as Harris points out, doing pulls at full bore in such a vehicle can become unpleasant after a couple of attempts even for a hardened driver.
What he cannot deny is genuinely impressive (and useful) is the Plaid and Plaid+ models’ range, particularly the latter. As you undoubtedly already know, Tesla expects the Plaid+ to get an industry-topping 520 miles of range, calculated on the EPA cycle - it could be close to 600 miles on the WLTP cycle.