Angrier Tesla Model S P100D Spotted On The ‘Ring, Complete With Wide Fenders, Fat Tires And A Cage

Five days after Elon Musk announced he’d sent a Tesla Model S at the Nurburgring in an attempt to beat the Porsche Taycan’s record lap time, we get the first solid confirmation that there is indeed a crew there preparing for the attempt.

Our spies spotted a very aggressive-looking Tesla Model S P100D, complete with wide fenders, fat tires on lightweight wheels and reportedly a roll cage fitted, surrounded by a team of engineers on the Nurburgring.

Earlier today Road & Track reported citing local sources that Tesla has booked a private 30-minute time slot at the famous German track on September 21, indicating at the announced lap record attempt. There’s also the chance of them trying to set a lap time on September 18, but according to the report, that session is probably not a private one.

Musk confirmed via Twitter that they won’t try a lap time this week but he also claimed that the Model S has set a new lap record at Laguna Seca for “fastest 4 door ever”, with the onboard video and more details coming tomorrow.

During the past few days, a normal Tesla Model S was also spotted at a shop outside Nurburgring featuring a clear plastic glued to the carbon spoiler together with more tape, as well as a set of sticky Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 R tires, raising eyebrows about the seriousness of the effort.

Now that we have laid eyes on the actual car that’s going to have a go at the lap record, we can say with certainty that Tesla is taking this matter more seriously that initially thought.

Beating Porsche at their home turf is a huge challenge for Tesla and the chances of doing so with a standard-spec Model S looked pretty slim. In addition, Porsche’s development work to make the Taycan as fast as possible around the Nurburgring are described by the locals as “very intense”. All we have to do is wait and see if this Tesla Model S has what it takes to beat the Taycan.

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Image Credits: CarPix for CarScoops

  • TrevP

    Guess we’ll see

  • Matt

    So not a production Model S then…

    • LJ

      Also about $70k cheaper.

    • Neither was the Taycan…

      • Matt

        Oh really, it wasn’t? Do tell…

        • Brant

          This is a prototype for the new Model S Turbo 😉

          • Stephen G

            LOL. Maybe the big reveal is it’s really a “Twin Turbo”!

        • Jason Miller

          How do you know it was? Only Porsche knows that.

          • Matt

            Uh the burden of proof is on Will as he made a claim without anything to support it. Porsche have never been known to cheat their ring records, I don’t expect them to start now. But feel free to plant doubt in everyone’s mind.

          • Jason Miller

            I would be willing to bet that most “production car” records on the Nurburgring should be taken with a grain of salt.

        • krusshall

          Taycan production just started a day or two ago so to be technical, any Taycan seen on the Ring was either a prototype, test mule, or pre-production model.

          • Matt

            If the car was built to the exact same specifications as the production model then it is a ‘production car’, the rest is pointless semantics.

          • krusshall

            Porsche’s own promotional video states “Porsche Taycan Prototype”.

          • Matt

            As they would have to, to avoid being ‘misleading’.

          • Nick Hebert

            Just like saying it’s not a production Model S is pointless semantics as well. Tesla never claimed it was so it matters not. They openly stated that it will be in production in approximately a year from now. I doubt Porsche is going to have a more powerful next gen drive-train up their sleeve ready to release in a year so this S will be plenty relevant by the time it comes out.

  • Allcarnews

    There is something more going on with this Model S… It’s a longshot but what if there are Roadster bits underneath this thing… Future hardcore Model S??? If not, it looks like just wider rubber and added fender flares to make them more road legal per say… Also most if not all record attempt cars on the ring have a roll cage fitted so that shouldn’t factor into the productionworthyness of the car (that was for the keyboard warriors outhere)

    • Ben

      Then it would be pointless. These record lap times are in effort to be used as sales promotional data. Stuff to brag about. However, if the Tesla weren’t even close to being production ready, it wouldn’t matter for actual Tesla drivers. Plus, if they wanted to get into a pissing match with VAG, they need to aim at what the I.D R is putting down and that’s another story.

      • Allcarnews

        It was just confrimed that the Model S is sporting an all new “Plaid” Powertrain that will debut on the Roadster, Model S and Model X. Will be more expensive than the P100DL but cheaper than a Taycan Turbo. New everything.

        • Ben

          Let’s hope for the best. There is a trifecta to shoot for, innovation, reliability and availability. Tesla is known to hit one or two of those, but they’re still working the kinks out on getting all three right consistently.

        • Nick Hebert

          The Roadster is just a triple motor setup aka the ‘plaid powertrain’ – as has been known for a long time now. They’re just taking that and integrating it into the S. An extra motor and other drive-train improvements isn’t wildly “new everything”.

  • R12Nein

    Porsche’s press release didn’t address the fact that there was no actual four-door EV record to break, which means they could’ve released their 10th fastest time just to see what Tesla’s response would be. I don’t think this is going to end well for one of them..

  • Richard Alexander

    Ringer. Cheating secured.


    • Matt

      Those fender flares do not look well integrated to me. They look like they could be from eBay.

  • designer_dick

    The hood either isn’t latched properly, or the panel fit is Tesla’s usual half-arsed approach to quality control, and as other commenters have noted, the flared arches look like they were glued on half an hour before the photos were taken.

    • Nick Hebert

      They probably were put together very quickly – so what? It’s a wider body than stock. Doesn’t even matter because it’s not a production car, it’s just a test prototype focused for the track.

      • designer_dick

        Don’t you think Tesla would be better served doing something about the Model S’s flimsy build quality, cheap interior, poor panel fit and quickly ageing looks than continually introducing more and more ridiculously fast variants?

  • Dennis James

    I like the fact that Elon Musk is not a fan of hiding things and the modified Tesla is on full display instead of wearing camo. I also appreciate that people can look at SpaceX’s starship build progress without any issue.

  • Mr. EP9

    Why the sudden interest in lap records, Elon? Is it because they now have something to prove considering the Taycan exists?

    • Stephen G

      Why the sudden interest in electric cars, Porsches & Piechs? Is it because they now have something to prove considering the Model S exists?

      • Rimas Kurtinaitis

        They have already proven it. Big time.

        • Nick Hebert

          Hardly? They definitely weren’t proving anything in the electric world all these years that Tesla was around. And they still haven’t proven jack squat other than they can source electric parts together and make it handle well. Porsche can’t even come close to Tesla’s range, much less be as quick on the streets. So that is not “big time”. Tesla is already ahead and in the next year or so they will make another step improvement that will further their lead even more (just see the recent battery patent they made as an example).

    • Nick Hebert

      It isn’t sudden actually. They’ve been planning to do a run at this track for some time. Not that it matters. But keep digging for dirt and carry on.

  • Arthur Burnside

    Just as I suspected, Elon Musk is cheating again. What a sleazebag

    • Jason Miller

      How do you know Porsche didn’t hop up their car? You don’t.

    • Allcarnews

      Nope you just aren’t aware of whats going on. Just unveiled the new Plaid powertrain that will underpin the Model S, X and Roadster and will be placed above the 100DL models but will cost cheaper than a Taycan Turbo S.

    • stockinbug

      You can’t claim cheating before the race even starts. Porsche raced a pre-production prototype, which is exactly what Tesla is doing. The Model S with “plaid” drivetrain is planned for production next year.

  • Ben

    Good to see Tesla inspired by Dodge.

  • Subi-Rubicon1

    What no one is talking about is the fact that thanks to Tesla, the big boys (good or bad) are coming out with competitive products which is a win for the consumer.
    Now Tesla, go on and show’m whatcha got! Haters gonna hate.

    • SD38439

      You mean thanks to the climate change industry.

      • Subi-Rubicon1

        No, I typed what I meant.

  • Jason Miller

    They should offer this as a sport package or something. It looks great.

    • Allcarnews

      Elon just announced it’s the new “Plaid” Poweetrain. Basically the Roadster powertrain put into the Model S (and the X in the future)

  • Matt

    Is this actually a Roadster mule, based on the wider track and Roadster wheels?

    • benT

      Is it much too big to be relevant to the Roadster development……?

      Roadster appears to be well developed beyond Firburgering trials

    • Nick Hebert

      It’s not a Roadster mule, it’s an S mule with the same plaid power-train that will be in the Roadster but also available in the S and X as a higher tier option a year from now.

  • PoisonEagle

    I guess Porsche will have to develop a GT version of the Taycan after all..

  • Jay Buchholz

    I’m pretty certain this is the car with the upcoming “Plaid” powertrain. This is absolutely not stock today. It’s got three motors just like the 2020 Roadster.

  • Nick Hebert

    If you think acceleration of the Taycan doesn’t harm range you have a lot to learn about basic physics of batteries as it happens to all EV’s. Not to mention this mule has already been witnessed doing multiple laps *consecutively * around the Ring. And to think Tesla can’t tune it’s chassis very good is ridiculous. Porsche makes a niche product and their focus is entirely on being a track car. How does this result in better built cars for Tesla fans? There is no irony in this either. Tesla is focused on mass produced cars in a different car segment than Porsche. There is no correlation here that makes Tesla a more conventional car company. They are simply doing this to offer a higher end option that will beat Porsche at it’s own game while beating Porsche in price as well. Sounds to me like Tesla is the more conventional car company already within it’s own domain.

  • Dredd2

    so we can say that, its not a saloon model s, its wider, with wider wheels maybe its gutted and of course caged. who cares of its time? honda did the same with that cheatr type r. shame.

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