Geneva 2015: Tesla Model S P85D

The Tesla Model S P85D took centre stage at the Geneva Motor Show 2015 for its European debut.

Having previously debuted in California late last year, the Model S P85D used the Geneva Motor Show to debut for the European automotive world. The P85D is the top-of-the-range, all-wheel drive variant of the popular Model S. The P85D features supercar levels of acceleration thanks to two electric motors – front and rear – that combine to produce 691 hp and 687 lb-ft of torque to all four wheels without a power-sapping mechanical link between the two axles.

When using launch control, the P85D will accelerate to 100 km/h in just 3.2 seconds, matching the acceleration figures of many supercars. The P85D completes the quarter-mile in just 11.8 seconds.

Despite the addition of a more powerful rear motor, the P85D retains perfect 50:50 weight distribution. With a reported range of 295 miles, the P85D is now frustratingly close to the magical 300-mile range mark.

Geneva 2015: Tesla Model S P85D

With the addition of an extra motor at the front, with minimal intrusion on vast luggage space, the P85D has transformed itself into a supercar-beating monster.

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  1. A quote from the article, “the P85D retains perfect 50:50 weight distribution”.  Who says that 50-50 is the perfect weight distribution?  Certainly Formula one teams and Lamborghini and Ferrari, and Lotus and, Mclaren wouldn’t agree that a 50-50 weight distribution is ideal.  Most supercars today go for something more like 40-60 or even 35-65, with the heavier weight on the rear wheels.  The idea behind 50-50 weight distribution is that the side force on the wheels is equal in a steady state turn but, during turn in (when you first turn the wheel to start the turn) a 50-50 weight distribution will result in understeer and generally not as quick turn in.

    Of course it is admirable that Tesla was able to achieve even 50-50 weight distribution.  Most luxury vehicles in it’s size and weight range will typically have a bit more than 50% of the weight on the front wheels, with some all wheel or front wheel drive vehicles seeing numbers as high as 60-40 (60% on the front wheels).  The Audi A8 runs about 55-45 F-R, BMW 7 series 51.5-48.5, Mercedes S series 55-45.  But lets not get the idea that because the Tesla S can accelerate like a supercar that it handles like one.

  2. Unbelievable Car that is light years ahead of all the competition.  All new technology with fantastic horsepower and range from a small USA company accomplishing the American Dream.  This car competes with the best out of Europe with a first generation car.  Truly an accomplishment.

  3. The P85 doesn’t have launch control, you just mash your foot down as hard as possible and the car takes care of the rest. It’s a strange sensation doing this, it felt like I was pointing the car rather than driving it. I don’t know if this is the same sensation you get when driving other Super Cars.


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