Elon Musk’s big secret was a 691 horsepower all-wheel drive Tesla Model S P85D which he claims is the fastest four-door sedan ever built. With a 3.2 second sprint from 0 to 60 MPH, Musk is right to describe it as one’s own persona roller coaster, and the Model S can indeed rank itself amongst the world’s fastest cars.
Life is all about perspective though, and while 3.2 seconds is indeed quick, it helps to compare that number to some other well-know supercars. Here’s a list of five vehicles the Model S P85D can out-accelerate in a race of 60 MPH.
2014 Porsche 911 GT3
Once the crown jewel of the Porsche lineup, the 911 GT3 now plays second fiddle to the 918 Spyder as the top-performing vehicle. That’s not to say it’s by any means slow though, as Porsche officially quotes a 0 to 62 MPH time of 3.5 seconds. Some outlets have managed to do even better than that, and with a 3.8 liter turbocharged V6 to boot. It’s the smallest engine in this lineup, and with just 475 horsepower one of the least powerful.
The secret is in a low curb weight that allows for superb acceleration, albeit acceleration that can’t match the all-wheel drive Model S. In fairness though, the Porsche 918 Spyder can go from 0 to 62 MPH in as little as 2.5 seconds…but it also costs $887,000, more than all the other cars in this list combined.
2014 Shelby GT500
Ford blew the car world away when it rolled out the 662 horsepower Shelby GT500 at the 2011 Los Angeles International Auto Show, ushering in a new era of high-horsepower muscle cars. Boasting a supercharged 5.8 liter V8 and a top speed of 202 MPH, the GT500 offers the most horsepower value for your dollar at just $55,000 new.
But while it has a higher top speed than the new top Tesla, the huge V8 still takes 3.5 seconds to push the Mustang from 0 to 60 MPH. That’s a third of a second slower than the Tesla, which happens to outweigh the super ‘Stang by about 1,000-lbs. Instant torque will do that.
2014 SRT Viper
While the GT500 has a pretty big motor, it is absolutely dwarfed by the 8.3 liter V10 found in the 2014 SRT Viper. Cranking out a healthy 640 horsepower without the use of forced induction, the Viper also comes in at a relatively svelte 3,354-lbs, which lets it race down the quarter-mile in just 11.5 seconds.
Compared to almost any other car, the 3.3 second run to 60 MPH is almost inconceivably fast, but the Tesla Model S is quicker by a blink. Viper sales have been pretty low because of the $100,000 starting price, though Tesla has had no such problem there, with buyers having to wait months to take delivery of their electric cars. Chrysler actually had to cut the price of the Viper by some 20% just to stimulate sales.
Ferrari 599 GTO
If I were to ever own a Ferrari, this is almost certainly the one I’d own. Its 6.0 liter V12 makes spine-tingling 661 horsepower for what Ferrari claims is a 3.35 second sprint to 60 MPH and a top speed of 208 MPH, plus a whole suite of race-bred performance technology that put this supercar in a category all its own.
Yet it’s still not quite as quick as the latest and greatest Tesla, and for the $489,000 price tag plus uber rarity (just 125 were made I believe), it’s by far the rarest car on this list.
Technically the all-wheel drive Tesla isn’t faster than the McLaren F1, but rather just as fast as it shares the same 3.2 second 0 to 60 MPH sprint. That’s because the original hypercar is the bar Elon Musk set in terms of desired performance, and by Nikola he’s done it. It’s fair to mention that the McLaren F1 debuted 22 years ago, and at an astronomical price point (which has since risen past $10 million for one of the 106 units produced). Even though it’s more thab two decades old though, the 6.1 liter V12 still crammed out 627 horsepower, and it only weighs a little over 2,500-lbs, quite literally half what the AWD Model S comes in at.
There’s an old saying that there’s no replacement for displacement, but Tesla is showing that electric motors are more than up to the task. While it may not necessarily be as fast as these other cars thanks to a 155 MPH top speed, it’s more than up to the task of keeping these cars in check in your standard contest of acceleration.
I can’t wait for the first crop of videos to show the all-wheel drive Tesla Model S P85D blowing all sorts of supercars out of the water. Let’s see what the haters have to see then.