Tesla Model 3 Arrives At Top Gear For A Drag Race With A Twist

The time for Top Gear to test the Tesla Model 3 has come and, as expected, the popular TV show brought along its key performance rivals, namely the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio, the BMW M3 and the Mercedes-AMG C63 S.

As you might have guessed by now, the version tested here is the range-topping Performance, complete with dual electric motors and 444 HP. Elon Musk made some bold claims when the faster Model 3 arrived,΄ – claims that Top Gear is putting to the test.

Tesla’s CEO had said that the Model 3 Performance “will beat anything in its class on the track”; which, admittedly, is not an easy feat given the caliber of the competition.

Also Watch: Tesla Model 3 Performance Declared To Be In A Class Of Its Own

Of course a full comparison must include a drag race. Unlike the usual quarter-mile run, though, Chris Harris opted for a longer half-mile duel to see if the bad boy of the Model 3 range can keep its momentum going against its angry rivals.

The Tesla Model 3 Dual Motor Performance offers a combined 444 HP (450PS) and 471lb-ft (638Nm) of torque, making it capable of a 0-62mph (100km/h) in 3.4 seconds and of a top speed of 162mph (261km/h).

The Performance package adds a lower ride height, 20-inch alloy wheels with stickier Michelin tires, bigger brakes, a carbon lip spoiler and, more importantly, a special Track mode that extracts more speed out of the Model 3.

So, does this mean this is another drag race dominated by the Tesla? Well… no spoilers here, the answer lies in the video right after the break.


  • Bo Hanan

    If only Tesla made better looking cars.

  • xDRAN0x

    God bless all these people beta-testing Tesla cars.

  • Bash

    Blast. but still ugly.

  • Six_Tymes

    their next generation better be impressive looking, or they’ll loose their customer base. I highly doubt the current customer base will stick around if the next gen model whatever remains unattractive. the S was the best looking, but face it, it’s getting “long in the tooth” on the outside.

    • Jason Miller

      Why would the current customer base leave if the cars keep looking the same? Obviously they already purchased the car and don’t care. I doubt they will in the future. Looks are subjective.

    • The Model S tried to look like a classic Sedan to not scare people (buying big luxury sedans)… Now they’re doing like Toyota with the Prius… making their own original design that stands out. It seems to work for them, I’m not a fan, but unlike the Prius I don’t find it ugly. Still stands out.

  • Callanish

    A little perspective. The C63S and Alfa both have 500hp, so anything with 444hp in a longer distance type race that can still keep up with them is pretty impressive, although as far as looks go, it did hit every branch on the way down when it fell off of the ugly tree.

    • KidRed

      The exterior isn’t bad, I’ve seen some nice looking examples. It’s the interior. It’s just bleh. It’s blank. It’s barren, boring and void of any design detail or character. That gives it a cheap feel.

  • GobbleUp

    If only BMW remembered how to make a good looking and sounding M car again.

  • Bart

    Is there anyone in the world that’s cross buying Model 3 with M3, AMG and Quadrifoglio? Really doubt it. Tesla is in it’s own class here; perhaps comparison to e-tron or EQC would be more apt.

    • They don’t compare to Tesla. you would probably enjoy more spending time in a Merc, Jag or Audi Electric… But Tesla would destroy them in performance.

      • KidRed

        I’m technically cross shopping the Model 3 and M3. Both would be used, with the M3 being a little older. If the Model 3 can beat it on the track and in a straight line and is cheaper (tho not nearly as handsome) then it’s worth a serious look.

  • salamOOn

    before the race – i would take that AMG….. after the race – i would still take that AMG.

  • Mat

    Alfa Is fster than BMW and Merc…So how did it happen?

    • Nastinupe1911

      Because it’s not quicker…

  • driv3r

    These drag races are getting so boring. Especially Petrol vs. Electric drag races. Why is everyone up to comparing cars that have entirely different engine technology? Even a Kia Niro or a Hyundai Kona Electric gets good off the line because… it’s electric. Your drag race is complete nonsense, Top Gear.

    • Mikestroh

      AGREE 100%

    • Dark Rebel

      Last century motor technology goes not count as an engine, I think the word you are looking for is drivetrain! The rest of your point is spot on. These comparisons are not apples to apples. It is like people getting hyped up over a Hennessy tuned vehicle versus something stock, I’d hope a tuned vehicle would win every time.

    • brn

      The Niro takes 8.7 seconds to get to 60mph. My base model ICE will tromp it.

  • Felix Le Forestier

    I think Harris described the model 3 as a muscle car which in my opinion seems to be spot on.

  • Because drag racing is done on 2 x quarter mile track and petrol is better… A thousand middle fingers salute.

    This kind of Top Gear crap got boring even before the end of Clarkson era, and now Harris, a guy with zero charisma and humor tries to pull the same stunt… just stop, dude.

    I couldn’t care less about Tesla, the fanboys are retarded and hype is getting a bit boring, but this bias makes Tesla even a bigger winner.

    • Jason Miller

      “The fanboys are retarted…”

      You must be fun at parties.

    • insulting people like that makes you sound nice and smart.

      • My comments are free for anyone to get insulted, in the absence of common sense. 😉

    • Matt

      Harris has ‘zero charisma’? He is by far and away the most popular car reviewer around. The amount of people who watch Top Gear ‘just to see Chris Harris’ is big, judging by all the comments on their videos. He is a very talented driver too, which gives him real credibility.

      • Well, all I can say is that you should continue watching Top Gear, I stopped a long time ago… shortly before I stopped watching The Grand Tour.
        And as for the amount of people, find me some relevant stats.

  • Jason Miller

    These cars are GREAT for autocross too. If I could afford one I would buy one in a heartbeat just for that use.

  • Harry_Wild

    Great test to show the Model 3 is not that fast as Musk claims. Back to the drawing boards for Tesla!

    • TheToadPrince..~~ToadSquad

      umm dude ..those other cars were their top line cars over a basic tesla….thats quite amazing.

      • ctk4949

        umm that is the top of the line Model 3

    • brn

      It’s still pretty darn fast.

  • My only problem with Tesla is the interior, only drove the Model S, It was an awesome experience, I can’t afford one, but I couldn’t spend so much money on a cheap interior like that, and I like to press things, Not a fan of huge screens. Loved to drive the new Audi A7 and Panamera, but same feeling, why all those touch screens??? On the model 3… would have to drive one, but the speed seems written too small and just on the corner of a screen outside of road sight… not smart or safe. The second you need to take you eyes off the road to do something, you put youself in danger.

    • Enter Ranting

      Touch screens are a cheap cop-out for manufacturers. It’s much easier for them to plop a screen on the dash rather than designing and manufacturing physical buttons and knobs. They market the screens as high tech and luxurious, but really, they’re neither. Screens are cheap and common.

      • Recent expensive cars have pretty responsive screens, but searching for a fonction in a menu is not luxury. And as great as they can be… They will all be outdated soon. Best systems are those that can work with Android Auto and Apple car play for GPS and music. The screen for cameras and cars information. The rest buttons and knobs. I know Volvo hasn’t the best system sometimes it takes too long to find things. But they kept the necessary minimum buttons. Working out fonctions can be annoying… But I can do the basics as fast as on older cars. And when I want climate I’m not looking down on a second screen that doesn’t work like the main one (hello Audi). Still love our XC70. Just connect my phone for music and drive. Want something press a button it works.

      • SgtBeavis

        I agree and disagree. In the vast majority of cars out there, you are absolutely right. But Tesla’s screen is actually really really really good compared to everyone else. They didn’t cheap out on the performance of touch screen in terms of processing, memory, storage, etc. They made the thing so it won’t be obsolescent in a few years. Tesla’s OS is pretty solid too. It get’s OTA updates and new features regularly. The downside for the model 3 is that they crammed EVERYTHING into that screen so you have to go to a menu, a submenu, and subsubmenu to open the damn glovebox. That aspect of it does suck.

        • Enter Ranting

          I’d much rather feel the solid click of a quality piece of switchgear than poke at a piece of glass.

          • SgtBeavis

            I can understand your preference.

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