Tesla officially launched the three-engine Plaid Model S with 1,020 horsepower in a flashy event…
Elon Musk named the new three-engine, high-performance variant of the Tesla Model S 2022 the “Plaid” because, like the movie Space balls said, this is the only step beyond “Ludicrous”, the former top-dog of the Model S line. Well, what if there was is a step beyond the Plaid and the canceled Plaid +? According to a company source, there is no reason Tesla couldn’t make a four-motor Model S if they wanted to.
Why would Tesla want to make a four-motor Model S?
Mainly two reasons: more power and more traction, which could potentially improve the Model S’s launch, and actually give it a 0-60mph time in under 2.0 seconds without any gimmicks. According to the cut below, as the Model S Plaid is currently laid out, it has two motors on the rear axle driving each rear wheel and one on the front axle, arranged to mainly drive the right front wheel.
These carbon-clad motors are identical, according to our source, and are good for a total system power of 1,020 hp and 1,050 lb-ft of torque. This means that each produces around 340 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque.
Adding an additional front motor to the Model S would theoretically increase horsepower to 1360 horsepower and torque to 1400 lb-ft, with the additional weight of the motor (plus the driving force of the motor itself. ) eventually helping to give the car better traction and performance.
Why didn’t Tesla make a four-motor Model S?
As our source said, Tesla just didn’t feel the need to make a four-motor Model S. The S Plaid model’s dual-motor rear drive unit would fit on the front axle, but that would further reduce an already smaller frunk and make the car less efficient, while also adding cost and complexity. Our source also pointed out that the Model S Plaid is already at the forefront of the performance envelope, making it a riskier proposition to develop the automaker’s very first four-engine system.
The current three-engine system on the S Plaid Model should be available on both the Cybertruck and the Roadster, should either ever reach production. Rivian appears to be the first automaker to release a four-engine system, which comes standard on its R1T and R1S pickups and SUVs. GM is not far behind. The GMC Hummer EV pickup will also feature a four-engine powertrain when it goes on sale later this year.