Elon Musk: “Of Course” Tesla Model 3 Will Get Ludicrous Mode


Tesla Model 3

Tesla Model 3

Via his preferred medium of Twitter, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has confirmed that the Model 3 will get a Ludicrous mode option, similar to the Model S and X.

Ludicrous Mode Will Be Offered On Tesla Model 3

Ludicrous Mode Will Be Offered On Tesla Model 3

At the Model 3 unveiling, Musk stated that a Model 3 will be able to dash from 0 to 60 mph in under 6 seconds. It’s unknown how much added potential will be provided with Ludicrous mode, but we assume a number under 4 seconds sounds about right.

Today’s Ludicrous upgrade is rather pricey on the Model S and X (up to $10,000), but we’d expect it to be a fair bit cheaper on the 3. If Ludicrous mode costs say $5,000 on the 3 and that drops the 0 to 60 mph time by a second or more down into mid 3s from a theoretical “premium trim” level slotted above the base, would you fancy this option?

As we all know by now, Ludicrous mode basically allows the S and X to whoop any other car on the track, even a Ferrari.

Editor’s note (Apr. 30): An earlier version of this story mis-stated the estimated base 0-60 time of the Model 3, and has now been updated.

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67 Comments on "Elon Musk: “Of Course” Tesla Model 3 Will Get Ludicrous Mode"

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Go Tesla… at Ludicrous™ speed!

The article says:

“The Ludicrous upgrade is rather pricey on the Model S and X (up to $10,000), but we’d expect it to be a fair bit cheaper on the 3. If Ludicrous mode cost say $5,000 on the 3…”

I dunno, I would guess the Ludicrous™ mode for the Model ≡ will cost not much less than it does in the Model S. In either car, it will be a “premium” option, so I rather doubt Tesla will cut the price in half.

Of course, I could be wrong here.

“Of course” ?

Ludicrous would come on top of the top of the line model. If one’s getting top of the line, might as well go for L mode.

The question is if this will eat into S sales. Given a choice between mid range S vs top of the line 3 with Ludicrous, well, 3L might make more sense, at least to me.

But then, I won’t be getting the top of the line model, maybe bottom of the line model that has auto pilot.

i think you are right about the cost of ludicrous mode in the model 3. to make ludicrous mode slower in the model 3 would make no sense because it confuses the meaning of the mode – in that case, it would be better to create a new name. to offer ludicrous mode for a lower price in the model 3 makes no sense because then people would demand the same consideration when purchasing ludicrous mode for a model S.

my suspicion is that model 3 pricing will be like that of a m-b c-class or bmw 3 series. for example, you can get a c-class that costs about $40,000, but you can also get a c-class that costs nearly $75,000 (which is more expensive than an e-class).

so, i expect that there will be a wide pricing range for the model 3. since i expect that high priced model 3’s will be delivered first, that would be an incentive for depositors to upgrade to buy model 3’s that will cost a lot more than $35,000.

I speculate that Tesla could build the fastest street legal car in the world with Ludicrous mode in a Model 3.

Simple physics will tell you, that if they can match the torque and HP in the top Model S Ludicrous, and cut the weight to 2/3rds of the Model S, under 4,000 pounds, this means acceleration will be much greater!

Force = Mass x Acceleration (basic high school physics, for those who were awake :-).

IF the Force is the same and the Mass is cut to 2/3rds, the acceleration is 3/2, or 50% greater, so the 0-60 time might be cut to almost 2.0 seconds, matching or beating the world’s fastest street legal car, the $815,000 Porsche 918 Spyder at 2.2 seconds 0-60! See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fastest_production_cars_by_acceleration

Now imagine it with a silicon-sulfur battery. At 1.2 kWh per kg, a 250 kWh battery would fit easily and cost and weigh much less than li-ion.

Sure it loses capacity a little bit faster, but with this much capacity you need less than a cycle a week, and could expect 87% or about 220 kWh remaining after ten years use!

i just don’t get what the point would be. the “speed” to which you are referring is, for the most part, limited to relatively short bursts of straight line acceleration. by contrast, cars like the porsche 918 are built for use on a track, even though i suspect that very few would ever actually be driven on one.

whats it consist of? 6 or so transistors and better contact metals?

And a more warranty liability on the transmission, half shafts, etc.

I was thinking the same thing.
Tesla drivetrain reliability has an enemy, and it’s called Ludicrous mode.

I doubt I’ll buy ludicrous mode.

Isn’t it just a software upgrade?

Found this info about the Model S P90D ludicrous mode updgrade: http://electrek.co/2016/03/21/tesla-ludicrous-battery-upgrade-retrofit-model-s-p90d/ The Ludicrous upgrade consists of two improvements to the electronics of the Model S’ battery pack. The first improvement is the replacement of a standard fuse to an “advanced smart fuse” which enables the monitoring of current to the millisecond, and makes it possible to cut the power with “extreme precision”. For the second improvement, Tesla replaced the main pack contactor to use Inconel instead of steel. Inconel is a space-grade superalloy well suited for extreme high temperature environments. This superalloy is primarily use in the aerospace industry, and one of its more famous use is in the novel manufacturing process of SpaceX’s SuperDraco engine. The two improvements combined allow Tesla to increase the max power output of the Model S’ battery pack from 1300 to 1500 Amps, which enables higher performance. Tesla writes on the Ludicrous upgrade listing: “Upgrade the level of performance in your existing P90D from “INSANE” to “LUDICROUS”! This upgrade will decrease 0-60 mph time by 10% to 2.8 seconds with a quarter mile time of 10.9 seconds. The time to 155 mph is now 20% faster than a standard Model S Performance.” And… Read more »

Since this isn’t a Tesla site, we should add no one has been able to repeat the claimed 10.9 quarter, and everyone is getting 11.2-11.4s, if they try in their P90D L’s. Lots of back-up to these claimed times, on TMC, Drag Times, etc. Tesla appears to have lied, on this one, and it’s too bad.

What’s relevant about the (P85D) upgrade is about a .6 second faster 0-90 time, or IOW better highway roll-on acceleration above 30mph.

I don’t know if it’s a lie or others not able to test it properly. I suspect what’s needed is full battery charge before tested as well as few other “incidentals”. Not defending Tesla, but EV testing to the extremes is bit different from conventional.


Consumer Reports and Edmunds Clock Tesla P85D 0-60 in 3.5, Not 3.1 Seconds:

Using a standard 1-foot rool out (which isnt technically “0”) P85D has done 3.05. Quarter times, at drag strips, allow for this without anyone matching the 10.9, of the Motor Trend review. And they’ve tried all states of charge, including Max Battery.

Two marketing problems are “0-60″, rather than a ” to 60mph” claim, as others make (which allows for roll out), and the quarter claim, which does allow for rollout but cant be duplicated within .3 seconds. Germans have huge problems, but do typically publish repeatable performance claims. Often even understated.

None of the Teslas put out more than ~530hp, and Tesla has disclosed this. it is early, single gear ratio, peak power, that rolls off like other EVs. Just from an incredibly massive initial shove.

i thought that i did read that the ludicrous mode upgrade did include changes in the transmission to handle the increased mechanical stress.

it is worth noting that what “ludicrous” mode gets you is a glorified roller coaster. even with the modifications that you cited, the battery will still overheat, so the use of this mode is primarily for use in 1/4 mile straight paths. the model S is not a racing car for use in a closed loop track.

That’s good since no one is buying a Tesla to race on a closed loop track.

For “Model 3 Ludicrous”, it will be what Tesla has yet to define. Feel better?

For Model S, it’s larger battery wiring/fusing to carry 1,500 instead of 1,300 amps to the motors. Wiring that, with the chemistry Tesla uses, achieves much closer to the maximal allowable discharge rate of their 85, or 90kwh battery. Amp discharge potential is a direct function of battery size. The Model 3 will be lighter, and may make its sub-4 second time on that, the chemistry, or an option for a larger battery.

The Model S is a 71k to 147k car. Musk has said average selling price of 42k, for Model 3, but people are high if they think a decked out order won’t practically double the price.

Yep, Model 3 _P75D_ will undoubtably be $70k+

on the Tesla order pages, base model s costs $71,500 and the cheapest ludicrous mode car I could find costs $109,500. Looks like you have to get max battery, and all wheel drive before they let you purchase ludicrous.

They certainly are charging a premium for it and I can’t blame them for it.

Is there any car out there that can beat a P90D ‘s 0-60 time that costs less than $109,500? Idk. I was never a car guy until these electric cars came out.

Anyone have any idea how big a battery can be squeezed into a model 3? Going strictly on rumors I’m guessing 76kw. Using 55kw for 215. And max rumored range of 300 miles

What do you think for the wheelbase of Model 3?
Straubel said that M3 will be like Audi A4 in size.
Audi A4 is 4,7 meters long, Model S is 4,978m(6% difference). The wheelbase of A4 is 5% shorter than in Model S. I expect M3 to be 1-3 inches shorter than A4 but to have same wheelbase.
Speculations are for bigger cells 20700 in size – 8% taller and 11% wider than 18650. On same area the battery pack with taller cells will have more kWh, but between the thicker cells has more empty space. In the pack with bigger batteries will have less connections(because smaller number of cells) or less weight of non cells materials. I expect Tesla to be able to fit 90kWh battery pack with 20700 cells in the wheelbase of Audi A4 or Model 3, but they not gonna do it till some real competitor on the market in end of 2018 or 2019.

Nice post, Bul Gar,

I expect 75kwh to be the top trim on release, maybe 80.

And I expect the Model III _P76D_ to be just as quick as the Model S _P90D_. The BMW M3 is one of the baddest BMWs, right?

It’s cool but has no function. I wouldn’t pay 50 dollars for this.

I’d rather get a pretty paint job or something, like that purple rendering at the teslamotorsclub forum.

I kinda liked the Orange…

I want Super ECO so I can get 300+ miles on a charge by driving like I care.

The “Super ECO” mode is called 21 mph on cruise control. There’s some basic physics at work here, energy capacity in the battery, rolling friction, an ever decreasing drag coefficient, no magic to that.
Ludicrous mode is for entertainment purposes. Since buying a Tesla Model S, I’ve been around a few Ludicrous mode Model S owners, and I’ve been in a few launches. There may be some argument about that level of agility, but honestly, I think it’s only for entertainment purposes, unless you’re a racer.
To date, I’ve been underwhelmed by any and all roller coasters since buying a Tesla, excepting the ones that do inversions. If you amortize the cost of Ludicrous mode over the price of an annual pass to an amusement park, you will come out ahead. Plus, way more people die in roller coaster accidents than in a Tesla. Here’s a cheerful chronologue of roller coaster deaths for comparison: http://www.rideaccidents.com/coasters.html

It is entertaining, certainly. But most importantly, it’s an automotive SALES tool. The sheeple love their 0 – 60 times…

And just wait until the Model 3 starts delivering, and the wave of ludicrous mode videos begin clogging youtube. This is when Tesla will, unfortunately, add a slight air of ‘d-bag’ to their brand.

Wow. Another roller coaster death today:

As for the thinning of the culture with the Model III, this is definitely a cultural discussion to be had. When it happens. I think the Tesla collective community is hoping to connect with current Model III reservation holders and help them understand the EV community a bit better. My hope is that all the EV clubs will be doing this with any new EV owner, not just the Tesla groups.

As for loser personalities, maybe EVs will change all that. Culturally improve somehow. If all of us try, there’s a chance.

For Super Eco mode always take the shortest distance route, obey speed limits, accelerate moderately at most, and coast as much as you can as you approach traffic or stop signals. These tactics will minimize major drags on efficiency including distance covered, aerodynamic drag, and energy wasted on braking.

I don’t even think it’s cool. It just means that all driveline components must be stronger and thus heavier making the least efficient line of EV’s even less efficient.

And for what purpose? To drag race, usually on public roads.

In my almost 60 years of driving, I haven’t ever thought that I needed more acceleration power, even when I had higher testosterone levels. But I know that many others think that Insane Mode, Ludicrous Mode, Outrageous Mode, Way-Over-The-Top Mode, Show-Off Mode, I’m-Faster-Than-You Mode, Mine-Is-Bigger-Than-Yours Mode, etc., are really cool.

Metallurgic hardening rarely causes components to be significantly heavier…

“As we all know by now, Ludicrous mode basically allows the S and X to whoop any other car on the track, even a Ferrari.”

Please, Mr. Loveday. “Track” connotes turns.

I caught that one too. It seems even those who know better cannot help but drink the Kool-Aid.

I’m absolutely not in any way an expert on track racing, but I thought the two key points to win on the track are acceleration out of a turn, and holding a good line. I would assume the all-wheel drive, traction control, low center of gravity, and ludicrous acceleration would make these cars even more effective on the track.

Of course, I’m assuming the driver can keep the car on the best line. i think at this point the car will move faster than the driver’s brain.

I’d love to see other forms of racing as well. Would the rolling acceleration be helpful in an oval?

Model S and Model X are great cars, but they are not track cars. They have great acceleration, up until the point it has to go into power restricted due to heat buildup. Even when power is not restricted, the Model S and Model X are not built to be track cars. They are way to heavy, and regardless of if the 4600lb+ curb weight has a low center of gravity and regardless of which wheels it puts the power down through it won’t be able to brake as quickly or hold a corner as fast as cars that a much lighter.

Coming out of a corner it can make up some time, but once heat build up occurs and the power gets dialed back it doesn’t have much going for it at that point.

Model S _P90D_ would be an amazing track car, for a large sedan, except:

1) batteries overheat causing power reduction, and

2) batteries too small for most track races and recharging is too slow though battery swap could be an option.

Who cares about turns if you get battery temperature out of control before you finish one lap on track 😉

The author obviously doesn’t know difference between track and red light raceboy street show.

So if someone decides not to blast up and down the public thoroughfares, but instead takes the car to a quarter mile drag strip, they’re not REALLY at a track because it doesn’t have turns!?

I won’t order it on mine when the time comes. All it means is I would get a ticket since I would use it constantly.

Your insurance will likely be higher as well.


Long range battery on one of the two for travels? Yes

AWD on one of the two for winter trips? Yes

But why the heck would i need (need, not like) <4sec acceleration to 100kmh?

I'd love that, on a sports car. not on mine or my wife's daily commute or travel car.

I’m calling it now: look for a rash of people attempting even more dangerous passes on two-lane roads than they’re already doing.

I would pay $50k for a loaded model 3 including ludicrous mode.

I’d go for it but only if it doesn’t come at a range penalty as is the case with the Model S.

I HAVE a P85D upgraded to Ludicrous, and it is amazing fun. I have a deposit on a Model 3, as my one niggle with the S P85D(L) is that it is TOO physically large a car for my needs or wants.

So, YES, I would get the “Ludicrous” upgrade for “my” Model 3 as I would NOT have it any other way. BUT I would probably not follow through on my Model 3 delivery IF that Ludicrous Upgrade was even a tenth of a second slower 0-60 mph than my current P85D(L). I am prepared to pay upwards to around $75,000 for a truly HIGH performance/Ludicrous Model 3, but it that actual version is not as quick as my P85D(L) than I will wait for the later second generation ROADSTER with “Plaid.”

“They’ve gone plaid!”

$75K is about base price of S70. You want P85DL performance for S70 money? I guess anything’s possible, but that might kill S sales. I suspect 3L will be slower than P85DL by small amount.

Given pricing of similar ICE competitors BMW-M3 & MB-C63 of approx $65k, I see base M3 Ludicrous with no other options checked off coming in under $70k.

BMW/Mercedes don’t have everyone rushing to buy M3/C63 instead of 7-series or S-Class. Smaller/performance vs larger/luxury are different market segments.

Argument is about 3’s performance being the same as P85DL performance. For BMW, M3 at base 5 series price having same performance and M5. Yes, bigger M5 has some appeal, but M3 would be far more attractive for performance.

That kind of speed is only good for racing, which is fine if you have the time and money to indulge. To have that kind of power in a vehicle that is only used on the highways with posted speed limits is ridiculous and dangerous. It’s funny that we constantly hear about Tesla ludicrous mode but we never hear about a Tesla doing any real racing.

The auto manufacturers learned a long time ago that one of the best ways to sell cars is to get them on the race tracks. We need auto manufacturers to get more heavily into endurance EV racing. We need to see to see EVs out on the stock car tracks every weekend, we need a Daytona 500-E every year.

Racing does much more than just sell cars, racing improves technology. One of best ways to improve EV charging speeds is going to be getting a bunch of innovative racers competing in a 500 mile race. The 700 horsepower of the Tesla is more horsepower than many race cars have, I want to see how a Tesla or any high horsepower EV will do in a long distance pedal-to-the-metal race.

What we really need is racing on closed-off city streets so we can see actual steering and handling. And we need real stock cars.

Once the water table of Florida is contaminated by salt and the real estate market crashes there again, a TV network (or whatever will replace those) should take over an abandoned city with a challenge cup race between real production cars from around the world, only 150 miles long. Modern oval-track racing is boring compared to video game racing.

I’ve had a bunch of fast cars and motorcycles in my life and I have very little interest in speed any more. Nowadays I prefer to keep my speed down and hit the cruise control so I don’t have to keep looking in the mirror for cops sneaking up on me. I will take more but I decided a long time that 200 horsepower is about the right amount in a sadan for me, that’s enough to get up to highway speeds quickly.

I have had problems with wheel spin at times with both front wheel drive and rear wheel drive cars. I would much prefer all wheel drive but I will take front wheel drive over rear wheel drive any day. I’ve swapped ends way too many times and I’ve seen way to many accidents caused by rear wheel drive cars to ever want a rear wheel car again.

At the unveil Elon made very clear that sub 6 secs is for the base model, together with the comment “at Tesla we don’t make slow cars”.
It is known that this figure will not require Ludricrous.
Please watch again the unveil and correct the article

Hey AI,

Yes, Eric accidently mis-referenced the base time of the 3. I’ve gone back in and fixed it up…all good now /thanks!

Yep, with a ludicrous price tag …. I am wondering how much for a fully loaded model 3 …. 60-70k USD ?

I hope it is $50k for ludicrous M3 price tag

I think $70-80K is a reasonable expectation for MIII DL. It should be bumping into the low end MS.

No interest in Ludicrous Mode. 0-60 in <6.0 seconds is quicker than any car I've ever owned.

The base Model 3 will be fine, thanks.

I won’t be interested in L mode unless it’s a lot cheaper than on the S. But I think I might have been if I had a lot more money. There’s plenty of people who have a lot more money than I do, and frankly let them pay for the incredibly unnecessary but incredibly fun little feature. Then put that money into more factories, chargers and Model 4… 😉

I think just ahead of second round showing for Model 3, when ‘ludicrous’ will be announced, they’re going to announce ‘plaid’ for Model S/X, just to maintain their top tier status.

I’m thinking ‘plaid’ is going to be around 2.5-2.6 seconds 0-60 mph and around 9.9-10.1 seconds 1/4 mile.

I’m calling it:

The updated Roadster should have a head/ neck brace built into the seats, to reduce whipping your spine back into the seats in Plaid mode.

I knew a young guy with a lead foot who would consistently show-out with however much power was available. That young guy managed to get much older, thank God for that, but I’ve learned that having the most horsepower isn’t the best thing going since I still have the same desires lurking deep within.

The only reason why I would buy a performance version for a few thousand dollars extra, would be to get one soon enough to qualify for the $7,500 fed tax incentive (plus my state incentive).

Otherwise, a sub-6 second car is plenty fast enough for me.