Slip sliding in the best way
The Performance version of the Tesla Model 3 isn't a one-horse open sleigh by any means, but it appears to be just as good at dashing through the snow. At least, that's our takeaway after watching this video of "Mad Hungarian" Ian Pavelko demonstrate the sure-footedness of the electric mid-size sedan in a Canadian industrial park decorated with a healthy layer of the white stuff.
Not only does the car, equipped with winter tires (Winguard Sport 235/45R18), perform well under both acceleration and braking while in the standard settings that every Model 3 operates in, it does a fantastic, more entertaining job of it while in the Track Mode available only in the Performance editions.
Pavelko, who claims 20 years of experience with the Audi Quattro "both on the street and in rallies," does a great job describing how the special mode affects the car's operation. He points out, among other things, that lifting off the accelerator brings on the regen, which helps the front tires gain grip and turn in when asked. Perhaps as powerful as his words is the footage of the car throwing out its rear end, but being easily brought back into line with a bit of steering input. We have to say we also enjoyed the bits where he just does donuts for the pure joy of it.
Overall, Pavelko seems quite impressed by how the software manages the output from the car's dual motors, saying of the Silicon Valley engineers, "they hit this out of the park." The judgments he intones are made more believable by the laughs and giggles he can hardly suppress while relaying the experience.
Although spirited driving in the snow can admittedly be a lot of fun, we hope owners will (please) heed the warnings on the screen that Track Mode is intended for non-public roads only. Despite the Model 3 supposedly being the safest car NHTSA has ever tested, the driver still has a responsibility to those they share the roads with.