Tesla Model S P85D Sets 1/4 Mile World Record, Hellcat Chokes and Smokes (w/video)


In a report from Street Car Drags, and verified by NEDRA, this weekend a Tesla Model S P85D demonstrated more of “Insane” by breaking the 1/4 mile record (quickest/fastest production electric car).  The challenger, a 2015 Dodge Challenger Hellcat, has a 6.2L Supercharged HEMI V8 pumping out 707HP.  The Tesla’s run was an 11.6 @ 114.6 MPH  1/4 mile with a 1.65 60′ time.  0-60 MPH was 3.1 seconds.  No word on what happened to the big V8.

Here’s the timeslip posted on Drag Times:

2015 Tesla Model S P85D 1/4 mile Timeslip Scan 11.693 @ 114.610 in the 1/4 mile

2015 Tesla Model S P85D 1/4 mile Timeslip Scan
11.693 @ 114.610 in the 1/4 mile via Drag Times


Category: RacingTesla

Tags: , , ,

75 responses to "Tesla Model S P85D Sets 1/4 Mile World Record, Hellcat Chokes and Smokes (w/video)"
  1. Hatim says:

    So, most cars are specially prepared for these dragraces. I wonder when someone brave would remove 3/4 of the batterypack of the Tesla D, it will still has a range of 60 miles and the weight will be much less. That will be some 0-60!


    1. Sublime says:

      That’s like saying the hellcat owner should cut off 4 of its 8 cylinders to save weight. The battery is what makes the power, not the motors.

      1. Stuart says:

        No, the battery is equivalent to the fuel supply. No point running on a full tank if you only need 5 gallons.
        However, there will be slightly more power available with an EV with a larger battery. But prolly 1/2 or 1/4 battery would be faster.

        1. Ted Dillard says:

          “The battery is equivalent to the fuel supply”. Wrong. 😉


          1. Stuart says:

            The energy in a fossil fuel vehicle is stored in the gas tank.
            The energy in an EV is stored in the battery.
            The energy in a fossil fuel vehicle is converted from chemical to kinetic energy in the engine.
            The energy in an electric car is converted from electrical energy to kinetic energy in the motor.

            1. Ted Dillard says:

              Due respect, read up.

              I’ve linked several comments here with posts about the power delivery of a battery pack, and commented below as well, with the math.

              1. windbourne says:

                You should read acticles SPECIFIC to Tesla’s parallel cells, vs. other cars.
                There is a REAL reason why Tesla uses 8000+ cells, while others use 32. The 8000 are packed into modules of which only 1 module is used at a time. And yes, 1 module is plenty strong to power the EV.
                The rest of the modules are not tapped until the current 1 is MOSTLY spent (never empty).

            2. Jeff H says:

              a battery pack is not the same as just the fuel tank. It’s more like the fuel tank, fuel pump, fuel lines, and the injectors. It not only stores the power, but it also determines how quickly the power can be extracted. Removing 1/4 of the battery would lower the kW output of the battery by 1/4 which limits the power the motor can put to the ground.

            3. Nick says:

              The chemical energy in the battery is converted to electrical by the battery.

              That’s the missing piece of your puzzle. In this case more battery can make more electrical power.

    2. Martin B. says:

      Some could be removed but probably not that much to keep the actual performance.

      The bigger the battery is, the more cells you have and the more amp you can pull from them.

      1. Ted Dillard says:

        Right. To a point. See my comment below.

    3. Mr. M says:

      This might not work. The size of the battery limits the max power. If your Battery size gets smaller, the max power gets smaller. That’s desribed as C-rate.

      The leaf battery has a better c-rate as the model s. Therefore if you had a leaf battery with 85 kWh size, the battery would allow charging at 177 kWh.

      What you could do is use a different type of battery, maybe li-titant batteries. They allow better c-rates (up to 10C, some 20C) and get 4kW/kg. So for the 508 kw of the MS85D you would need only. Around 127+some pack = around 150 kg (=330lb). Whereas the model s has around 600 kg (1323 lb)?

    4. s.w. says:

      Sorry Tesla https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PewWDfasfnA#t=50 Keep trying and opening up the Tesla’s top end won’t make any difference in quarter mile times since it doesn’t reach it anyway.

  2. islandboy says:

    I don’t know how many people appreciate the significance of what Tesla has achieved with the P85D. When it comes to acceleration to 60mph. this car reigns supreme in it’s size/weight class and is posing a challenge to lighter smaller cars. The only four door sedan that can come close is the Mitsubishi Evolution 10 which IIRC, has been discontinued.

    Tesla is sending everybody back to the drawing board, including Mercedes, BMW and Porsche neither of which currently have an answer to this car. Even BMW’s technology flagship, the i8 is slower iof the mark than the Tesla P85D. It would be interesting to start comparing the 0 to 100mph times of the P85D to other four door performance sedans.

    1. Djoni says:

      Drawing board?
      I would suspect the only way to go is electric and tha’s it.
      So up to them to join the bandwagon or not.
      Because, battery will improve in power density and C rate so there’s a lot of improvement to come on the battery side and we just made about all we could with gas.

    2. MDEV says:

      I8 is slower than P85 too, p85D is out BMW league

    3. Ad van der Meer says:

      BMW is already back to the drawing board to produce a 4wd M5 and M6. Unfortunately for them the added weight and complexity will only hurt effiency.
      The race is on and it doesn’t look good for the internal combustion engine!

  3. Grumpy says:

    Imagine what the next iteration of the Roadster could be capable of doing. If I remeber the correct rule of thumb, every 100 lbs saved is equivalent to .15 or .2 seconds in the 1/4 mile. Sub 11 second 1/4 miles and 400 miles of range.

    Other than charge time, there will be nothing that critics can claim as an advantage for an ICE.

    1. Ryan says:

      By the time the next Roadster comes around (2020 maybe?), charge time will be a different story too.

    2. Jouni Valkonen says:

      Before new Roadster, there will come Tesla Model 3 P85D that should go below three seconds in insane mode.

  4. Skippy says:

    It’s too bad the Hellcat got a bad start. It would have been so cool to see the 2 cars going neck to neck with the Tesla slowly gaining the lead.

    1. pjwood says:

      Bad start? He was DQ’d by the lights.

      Some videos show nothing. This is one.

    2. Jim_NJ says:

      Actually, it would be the other way around with a well driven Hellcat. The P85D would jump fastest off the line, but would be caught by the 1/4 mile. There’s a good video of multiple Challenger Hellcat 0-60 runs by The Fast Lane guys.

      The best that the TFL guys can do is 5.3-5.5 secs. With an expert driver it hits 4.7, but says he’s seen ‘mid 3’s”. Needless to say an average driver in a P85D will always smoke a Hellcat off the line. A well driven Hellcat would pass the P85D by the 1/4 mile though (under 11 seconds for Hellcat), unless a software increases P85D top end performance.

      1. LuStuccc says:

        Another advantage of the electric drive… No one has to be an expert to squeeze the power from an EV!

        1. Foo says:

          That’s because it’s just an electric motor, and not a mechanical contraption consisting of thousands of parts and several control inputs.

          To me, ICE drivers are looking more and more like old-timey stream locomotive engineers, needing both hands (and feet) to operate several levers and valves, all of which need to be pulled, pushed, and twisted at any given time to keep things operating smoothly. All while their machine belches plumes of smoke behind it.

          1. Matt says:

            Your plumes of smoke argument is ridiculous. I’m guessing the fact you brought it up is that you love the environment. Look into where and how the batteries for your EV’s are made. FYI- it’s China and they produce more carbon making the batteries then you’ll ever save by driving an EV- that and the fact they’ll have to be replaced every so often.and carbon’s not the only pollution coming from this process. no EPA in China

            1. Roy LeMeur says:

              Troll Much?

              1. Phishing Troll says:

                Lithium is strip mined and processed in politically hot countries, not green.

              2. vi0lint says:

                …..but it’s true….

            2. Andrew says:

              Who doesn’t love the environment?! It’s what we live in every day of our lives! You’d be suicidal to “hate” the environment!

            3. bobhk says:

              Only a few of Panasonics factories are in China.


              There is enough Lithium in Texas and Nevada to fuel battery making for 100+ years.

    3. William says:

      As impressive and innovative Tesla is making its S class car. I’m at aww with its state of art engineering and look forward to owning one to promote my solar business. I must say the Helcat didn’t hook up and normally pulls in the high 10’s. Bad driver is this fail. Love Tesla for all Elon stands for…

  5. Ryan says:

    I want to see the P85D video where it gets smoked by Lawless’s Porsche 944 this same day 😉

  6. ELROY says:

    The Hellcat, E63, RS7, M5, are all 120mph+trap cars. That means on a roll at highway speeds, they all walk away from the P85D. So while the P85D gets a great launch, it cant compete with these car otherwise in acceleration. Case in point: With sticky tires, a stock Hellcat has already been in the 10s in the quarter mile. The 11.6 by the Tesla is not even close by race standards.

    1. Bryan says:

      One huge difference is that in the Hellcat you need to know what you’re doing to get into the 10’s. In the Tesla you just get the tires warm, stomp on it and steer straight.

    2. Bryan says:

      To be completely fair, the Model S does 155 mph in first gear and these muscle cars have upwards of 8 gears. What gear are they in as they pass through the trap at 120+?

      1. protomech says:

        With twin motors you can have two different gearing ratios for the two motors, giving you many of the benefits of a two speed transmission. That’s part of how the heavier 85D is quicker to 60 mph, has a higher top speed, and is more efficient at highway speeds.

        1. protomech says:

          That is, the S 85D versus the standard S 85.

    3. Grumpy says:

      Zero-30 or 0-60 is where all the real fun is in terms of drag racing. The lateral G-force is pretty low once you are at highway speeds. The Tesla takes 3 seconds to accelerate to 60 and 9 more for the next 60. Boring.

      1. pjwood says:

        What are you saying is “boring”. All the time P85D owners spend between 60-120mph, or the Hellcat not being able to get close to a 3 second 0-60, in street trim?

      2. ELROY says:

        Yes, the Tesla will get smoked at the upper speeds. 9 seconds 60-120mph? My modded 335i did it in about 1/2 that time. Here is a 60-130mph run in 6.9 seconds


        This is what the acceleration looks like in a car that traps 130mph+ in the qtr mile.

        Trap speeds show the true power to weight ratio, even with a mediocre launch. A high trap speed car will be the car that can accelerate hard from freeway speeds.

    4. islandboy says:

      Elroy. you may not have fully understood the point I was trying to make in my earlier comment. Tesla has been doing serial production of the first car they designed and built from scratch for probably less than three years

      The P85D is the second iteration of this first car and benifited from development work geared towards the Model X and the Model 3 (4wd and smaller motors). Yet still this effort has produced a car that many little kids (and big ones too) who witnessed the thrashing it gave to the ICE cars at the drag races on Sunday, will be starting to dream about as the kind of car they want to have when they grow up. This in the face of companies and technology that are in the region of 100 years old! Imagine what electric cars are going to be like in 10, 15, 20 years, much less 100!

    5. JakeY says:

      Meh. P85D currently doesn’t have the top end unlocked yet, so acceleration from 60mph+ is still similar to the P85 and top speed is still 130mph (therefore it has low trap speed)

      The 10.8 second runs by the Hellcat is with street drag radials. On stock tires it runs 11.2 second.

    6. Tesla Fan says:

      Ok so tell me when the hell anyone is going to go 120 mph?

      1. Scott says:

        …at a drag strip, or even more complicated race tracks.

  7. Greg says:

    Not to mention you don’t emit pounds of poisonous gas into the atmosphere.

  8. NotImpressed says:

    Who cares?? Quiz: How fast can a Tesla go? Answer: The speed limit!!!! When have you ever needed 0-60 in 3 seconds? It’s meaningless.

    1. Richard Gozinya says:

      Only if fun has no meaning to you.

      1. tedfredrick says:

        My Hot Rod 27T will do 0-60 i about 4 seconds and it is fun every time

      2. mike w says:

        Speeding tickets have “Meaning” to me.

    2. Tesla Fan says:

      At any red light in real world driving. That is where you have fun

      Dusting cars off the line

      0 to the speed limit

      Accelerations is what matters, not top speed

  9. Richard Gozinya says:

    Tesla’s got some smart engineers. Making sure to build a car that’s impressive in a drag race is sure to woo plenty of people. On the other hand, cornering prowess is a lot more entertaining, at least to me. Straight lines just aren’t as fun as the twists and turns.

    1. JakeY says:

      They’ve improved on that too. We’ll see soon with skidpad/slalom numbers from magazine tests and the Refuel track times. However, there’s only so much you can do with close to 5000 lbs of curb weight.

  10. Jim_NJ says:

    Here are a bunch of screenshots and trap times from last weekend. It looks like the Model S’s mostly got smoked by the 1/4 mile:


    1. islandboy says:

      Funny how of the 21 races pictured only 7 feature a Model S up against another four door sedan and 3 of those are other Teslas. The four non Teslas are in order of appearance, a BMW (5 series), what appears to be a Cadillac CTS, what appears to be a Chrysler 300 and a Mercedes E63 AMG.

      Also worthy of note is that of the 21 races, only 4 appear to feature the P85D, based on the fact that only four feature Model S 1/4 mile times close to or under 12 seconds. Any 1/4 with an ET of more than 12.8 seconds is either not a P85D or a very poorly executed run. Friom what I gather, a properly instructed grandmother could produce sub 12 second 1/4 mile times all day in a P85D.

      So, of the four races in which the Model S is “smoked” by another four door sedan, three are not the P85D. The one P85D that is beaten, is beaten by a Cadillac CTS that I guarantee is not stock. As a matter of fact, here is what I believe is a video of the exact same CTS doing 12.162 second a quarter mile at the same track, before being modified by Redline Motorsports.

      My point is that as far as stock four door sedans currently on the market go, the P85D is untouchable in a quarter mile drag race. At 1/8 of a mile, it would get even worse for the competition!

    2. islandboy says:

      Sorry, here’s the video:

  11. Anon says:

    This is great advertising for Tesla. 🙂

  12. Billy Bob says:

    So they hellcat driver decided to burnout instead of race. Go to Jim’s sight and see the actual results of racing. What a BS article.

  13. CAB says:

    I always wonder…what if the Tesla had a two speed gearbox (i.e. the modern Powerglide)? If I remember correctly, the first iteration of the Roadster (pre-production perhaps) may have had a 2 speed box which they abandoned, but I do wonder if there is an opportunity here to achieve better upper end acceleration numbers. I know it isn’t needed, but that’s not the point when you start talking about $100K+ cars, etc. I also beleive we saw an article here on InsideEVs about a company developing one.

  14. Tesla Fan says:

    Watt a joke

    send that hellcat to the junkyard please

  15. Ken says:

    The Charger red lighted at 1:20, saw that he did and didn’t bother wasting a run

  16. Roy LeMeur says:

    The insanely quick reacting four-wheel traction control makes it possible to go stupid quick in the rain and snow while maintaining control of the vehicle. Show me another car that does this.

  17. Roy LeMeur says:

    Betting that the Hellcat driver in the Palm Beach video didn’t even adjust his tire pressure for track conditions.

  18. Roy LeMeur says:

    The Hellcat is RWD only and needs to be finessed by an expert to achieve its low 11 second 1/4 mile time on street tires. Hellcat power to weight ratio is better than the Tesla. It would be interesting to see what the P85D would do with sticky tires all the way around Hopefully someone will be doing that soon. Haven’t seen one P85D dragstrip test with a tire change. Go watch Jay Leno demonstrate why you _never_ give your brand new Hellcat to a valet (end of video)-

    1. Bill Bennett says:

      Hellcat uses 1.5 gallons a minute and has a 19 gallon tank
      If you’re driving it hard you’d be out of gas in under 15 minutes.

  19. ModernMarvelFan says:

    Seriously, people need to learn something about drag race.

    Tesla or EVs have natural advantage at 0-60mph or even 1/4 miles due to single gear.

    Tesla is geared to do 0-60mph. B/c its max torque is reached around 40mph and its max power is reached around 70mph.

    But to be a performances car, it is more than just drag race speed. It is also about handling and braking which Tesla will suffer due to the weight.

    Of course, it is more than enough to impress the average joe…

    1. Roy LeMeur says:

      Always a relief to hear the voice of an authority on the subject.

  20. Sportscarfan says:

    Mercedes SLS Electric is faster then any Tesla-

    The Black edition SLS will run a 11.2 1/4 and the Electric version is even faster.


  21. Ted Dillard says:

    Well, now, let’s look at that battery question.

    The power claim is 700hp or so, right? That converts roughly to 520 kW.

    Those cells give you about 24A peak at 3.7V nom., so by my maths I get those cells in a pack can deliver about 65kWh. The pack is 85jWh, so yes, you could cut the pack size down and still get enough power to drive the motors at 700hp.

    1. Jouni Valkonen says:

      theoretically yes, but then it is needed to re-engineer also the battery cooling systems because it most probably cannot handle 24 amps discharge. And improved cooling probably adds weight. And in any case, the battery cells has energy density about 240 Wh/kg. So halving the battery cell count would only reduce the weight of the car by 200 kg.

      Comparably powered ICE drivetrain is not significantly lighter than high power electric drivetrain.

  22. slim says:

    GTR will walk over the new Tesla in the 1/4 mile.

    1. Bill Bennett says:

      Wait till the modelS P85D high performance model comes out with 2 -435HP motors. That should shut you gas lovin red necks up.

  23. Andy says:

    Really the teslas main advantage in this situation is the all wheel drive. The Dodge is fighting to stay straight at the beginning of the race. I think an all wheel drive vehicle would be a better match. The new GT-R would beat it rather easily.

    Though there are definite advantages of full torque and hp up front from electric motors. Electric cars have come a long way in the last 10 years!