[Update 5:14 pm, 10/9: Tesla has now published the full on-board video, which we’ve included into the post below. The run is still yet to be certified by Nurburgring officials.]
The Tesla Model S Plaid has supposedly just smashed the electric car lap record at the Nurburgring Nordschleife, according to a tweet by the boss man Elon Musk.
“Tesla Model S Plaid just set official world speed record [sic] for a production electric car at Nürburgring. Completely unmodified, directly from factory,” the tweet read, alongside a photo that shows two lap times: 7:30.909 and 7:35.579.
Based on previous official runs, it’s seems likely that the former is for the shorter 20.6 km configuration of the track, while the latter time is for the full 20.832 km track that’s used for official record timekeeping in recent years.
Either way, we still need to wait for the full on-board video to verify, which also means that the Tesla Model S Plaid’s lap isn’t officially certified just yet – and a cursory check on Nurburgring’s website confirms that.
But for now, if we take the results at face value, then a 7:30.909 time around the shorter configuration is indeed a new EV sedan Nurburgring lap record, smashing the previous 7:42.3 lap time set by the Porsche Taycan Turbo back in 2019.
Taking into account the Plaid’s performance credentials, the results doesn’t seem all too surprising. Powered by three electric motors, the Tesla Model S Plaid makes a total of 1020 hp and 1,420Nm, which translates to a claimed 2.1-second 0-100 km/h time.
Despite its incredible straight-line performance, its massive 2,162 kg weight does make it pretty challenging to fling it around all 154 corners of the Nordschleife, which probably explains why it’s still slower than a handful of ICE-powered cars.
For comparison’s sake, the Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S 4Matic+ currently holds the lap record for the “Executive Cars” category, with a time of 7:27.8 around the longer 20.8 km loop. Recently, the Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT also took the crown for the SUV category, with a new official lap record time of 7:38.925 around the same 20.8 km layout.
There aren’t too many pure EVs that have made the lap record attempt, but the record for that is currently held by the VW ID.R (in the Prototype class), with a time of 6:05.336.
Will Porsche come back for another official attempt, using the more powerful Turbo S variant? Well, with the carmakers recent fascination with setting Nürburgring lap records, we’d say that it’s at least a non-zero chance of this happening.
At least we know that Tesla is also still planning for a second Nurburgring run, featuring a modified Model S Plaid with added aero surfaces, carbon brakes, and track tires – although, it wouldn’t be certifiable as an official record, as that requires a car in its stock, factory form.
[images: Touristen Niko/YouTube]