2021 Tesla Model X Plaid: Three motors, a thousand horsepower, and a yoke

Alvin Reyes - Jan 28, 2021, 5:27am CST
2021 Tesla Model X Plaid: Three motors, a thousand horsepower, and a yoke

After unveiling the refreshed Tesla Model S, the American EV pioneer recently introduced the highly-anticipated Plaid tri-motor version of the 2021 Model X. With three electric motors, new battery modules, and a new heat pump the new Model X Plaid is the most potent version of Tesla’s falcon-winged SUV.

Capable of churning out a mind-boggling 1,020 horsepower to all four wheels, Model X Plaid is bloody quick. Zero to 60 mph takes only 2.5-seconds, and it tops out at 163 mph. On the other hand, the Model X Long Range (dual-motor AWD) takes 3.8-seconds and has a 155-mph top speed, so it’s safe to say Model X Plaid is on top of the totem pole.

But not really. As impressive as it may sound, the new Model S Plaid has better performance numbers than Model X Plaid despite having identical power outputs. The former goes to 60 mph from a dead stop in under two seconds and has a top speed of around 200 mph. Also, Model S Plaid achieves 390 miles of range, while Model X Plaid achieves 340 miles per full charge.

Still, the 2021 Tesla Model X Plaid is a serious performance contender. It has torque vectoring to offer sharper handling around the bends, while carbon-sleeved brake rotors provide reliable stopping power. On the styling front, the new Model X has a mildly-redesigned fascia and a new rear diffuser. It also has unique 20-inch and 22-inch alloy wheel designs.

The most significant change is apparent inside the cabin. The new Model X inherits the fancy new dashboard and steering wheel of the new Model S. The tiller is now a yoke. Simultaneously, the standard vertical touchscreen makes way for a new 17-inch horizontal display, which can be tilted left or right to offer better visibility. And with up to 10 teraflops of computing power, the new Model X and Model S are virtually gaming rigs on wheels.

Both Plaid versions of the Model S and Model X are now available to order via Tesla’s configurator. Base prices for both Plaid models start at $118,490 before tax incentives. Meanwhile, you can also get the Model S Plaid+ version with a larger battery, 520+ miles of range, and the same 1,020 horsepower output for around $138,490 (before incentives).

However, if a tri-motor electric SUV is not to your liking, the new Model X Long Range offers 360 miles of range, zero-to-sixty in 3.8-seconds, and a top speed of 155 mph for $88,490.


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