Tesla has updated the speculation around its lap time at the Nurburgring with this Tweet, its data suggesting a 7:20 lap should be possible. And that's kind of it for now, although expect plenty more in due course...
Until then, auf WiedersehenGermany
Here’s some of our initial Model S Plaid data to keep you buzzing until we return: pic.twitter.com/cWk9EModcM
— Tesla (@Tesla) September19, 2019
ORIGINAL STORY, 17/09/2019
Never in a million years, or for however long he might live, was Elon Musk going to allow Porsche simply to steal his EV saloon glory. Hence the Laguna Seca lap, and the recent emergence of pics showing a Model S at the Nurburgring, a pretty blatant riposte to the Taycan securing a 7:42 lap there. Tesla was going to have that record for themselves, thanks very much.
Now, the Model S is far from a natural track car, hence the modifications made to this one - it's lower than standard, and appears to have wider tracks as well. The most interesting change in that vain, though, is in the tyres, which look to be near-slick prototype Goodyears. Typically your 'ring record supercar will use the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 R or the Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R, so this could be considered an unexpected move. Moreover, they're believed to be the Eagle F1 Supersport RS tyres that aren't even yet on sale - no better way to announce new performance rubber than with a lap record.
What that record might be remains to be seen; our spy snapper suggests that Tesla will publish an official lap time by the end of this week - the week of the Porsche Taycan media launch, no less - but has timed it himself at 7:23, or 19 seconds faster than the Porsche. Now, of course, the word of a man stood by the side of the Nordschleife with his Casio can not be taken as gospel, as all manner of factors are at play. Imagine, though, if the Tesla could surpass the Taycan by such a margin - the Turbo S would have to become a GT2 RS sooner than we thought...
While there's still a lot of conjecture around just what a Model S is capable of at the Nurburgring, it's also clear there's not very long to wait for a definitive answer. We're told to expect a first attempt from drivers Thomas Mutsch, Andreas Simonsen and Carl Rydquist tomorrow evening in the industry pool session, followed up by a second at the weekend. Beating Porsche at the Nurburgring would be some way for Musk, the architect of so many industry-defying escapades, to steal the Taycan's thunder at launch - and who would bet against him wanting to do just that?
[Pics: S. Baldauf/S.B. Medien]