Tesla Model S P85D – Top Gear Test Drive

JUN 1 2015 BY MARK KANE 37

Current And Former Tesla Vehicles

Current And Former Tesla Vehicles

Top Gear recently test drove theTesla Model S P85D – more to check performance on the track than to see how far it can go up to the point of a  fully depleted battery.

The 691bhp and 4WD all-electric car received positive marks in terms of acceleration (0-60 mph in 3.1 seconds), driving in corners (despite 2.2-ton curb weight), and overall experience.

They didn’t test range of 480 km/300 miles (253 miles EPA) because using Insane mode they knew the results would be much weaker than standard.

Most interesting part is the summary to see what the petrol heads really think about electric progress:

“So it’s really that good?

Top Gear, as you’ll know, is not one to blithely embrace the latest, shiniest fad, particularly when it comes to alternative fuels. But the P85D truly feels like a paradigm shift in motoring, the point at which the electric car moves from interesting theory into petrol-pummeling reality.

No, a £79k super-saloon isn’t, in and of itself, the solution to all the wider world’s motoring woes. No doubt the electric car isn’t quite the finished article yet, but consider this: as battery technology improves, the Model S and its offspring will get lighter (and therefore even quicker), and capable of going yet further between charges.

Tesla’s rate of improvement, from the original, fast-but-flawed Roadster of 2008 to the P85D, is jaw-dropping. This car asks some pretty serious questions of conventionally fuelled performance machines. Whatever follows might just render them all but redundant.”

Source: Check out the lengthy review from Top Gear here.

Categories: Tesla

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37 Comments on "Tesla Model S P85D – Top Gear Test Drive"

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Big Solar

They didn’t say anything smart assey?

przemo_li

Until overheat from high discharge is solved, P85D is generally best of what we can get for family sedan 😉

przemo_li

* high battery discharge

Mike777

Shock, like most cars on the road it’s not a track car.

Nick

Hopefully Tesla will make crazy track cooling an option. Would make some of the review sites happy.

Perhaps they are waiting for the next roadster.

Dave K.

Tesla is so good that not even these childish @$$%&!#$ can say anything bad. One by one they come around, first Motor Trend, then Consumer Reports, now even Top Gear!

Robert

Clarkson drove an i8 oop north to his home town. Then he had the choice of driving it back to London, or driving the new M4. He chose the i8…
Even after taking the piss in the usual Top Gear manner about the charging, or rather his lack of ability to plug in to charge, he was genuinely impressed!

Top Gear must have put their finger in the wind and determined it’s no longer ‘cool’ to make fun of EV’s anymore.

No more Jeremy Clarkson helps too.

Mike777

Is the “Age of the Dumbass” finally ending?
Still got Rush on the radio, although many stations are dropping him.

I hope so. I think plug-ins are getting more & more into the hands of “Joe the plumbers”, and not seeming so much like weird-mobiles anymore.

Clarkson is probably throwing a hissy fit somewhere…

Speculawyer

I heard a rumor that Netflix was considering trying to reboot an auto show with Clarkson and some of the other guys. They would call it ‘House of Cars’.

I gotta admit, that’s a clever title.

jeffhre

Umm, “Former Top Gear presenter says being sacked by the BBC was a ‘wake-up call’ as he joins host of celebrities backing climate change campaign” LOL, times change, people…

Nix

I’m pretty sure that quote comes from an April Fool’s day joke….

RedLeafBlueLeaf

I wonder what fake stunt Jeremy would have done this time? Last time he filmed the staff pushing the Tesla as though it had unexpectedly run out of battery charge.

ja

What A Prick!

Jelloslug

Even Clarkson knows that EV is the future. He personally picked the i8 over the M3.

G2

Yes, no JC anymore allows them to speak and think from above the belt.

Robert

Not true. Clarkson was already impressed with the I8.
So impressed that after driving the i8, he had the choice between driving that on the return journey, or a BMW M4. He chose the i8.
Maybe this is the real reason he was sacked. He didn’t punch his producer at all. He just admitted he liked an electric car on TV and the Earth slightly moved off it’s axis so he had to go?

CDAVIS

Top Gear said: “This car asks some pretty serious questions of conventionally fuelled performance machines. Whatever follows might just render them all but redundant.”

+ 1Team Tesla.
They are accomplishing their declared mission for the Tesla Model S.

Jeff Songster

Finally James May and Mr. Hammond’s votes count with Little Jerry Clarkson gone.

jm

All three of them are gone, unfortunately. A great show that I’ll missl

tedfredrick

My fav of all time

miggy

James May owns and drives an EV amongst his other cars. As does Sir Peter Jackson who has one of the ten Tesla’s in New Zealand and Tesla don’t even sell in that country, the owners have to import them from Aussie and then fly the service ranger over for a service. Now that is dedication.

Robert

They may have gone from “Top Gear”, but don’t think for ONE SECOND, they have GONE!

pjwood1

From the article:
“At the limits of grip, the P85D offers a little tyre squeal…And as soon as you spot the exit of the corner, simply mangle the throttle again and that bow-wave of torque hurls you at the next apex. …And no, the P85D doesn’t offer the fingertip feedback or on-throttle adjustability of the very finest performance cars, but you get the feeling that’s simply a case of Tesla hooking up a laptop and tweaking a few lines of code. There’s more to come from this car.”

Amen. Let’s get it done, Tesla.

I don’t believe you can have “Tyre squeal” and then “mangle” the throttle of the P85D’s abilities in a turn. That torque = wreck. Or it should. Hmmm, lack of “on-throttle adjustability”. Tesla controls how much power you put down off-exit, and I can attest it can feel castrated. The “bow-wave” doesn’t happen again, until you’re almost dead straight.

With AWD, this car should be crabbing off-turns, as if headed into orbit. So, I think it needs “Mars” mode. For this purpose, ‘Insane’ and ‘Sport’ become a padded cell.

Robert

Don’t forget that all three presenters have the finesse of an orangutan!

Speculawyer

No mention of how cheap it is to drive on electricity or the pollution & climate-change benefits? Oh yeah . . . this is Top Gear. :-/

Nix

First, the Model S hits Top Gear right where it hurts — It has no gears to shift, and thus no “Top Gear”.

Second, the “Halo” effect that the P85D has for all EV’s is worth every penny of DOE Loans and EV incentives when it comes to getting the general public interested in EV’s.

If it were not for a successful Roadster and Model S, the entire driving public would still be talking about EV’s like they were all at best just like Mitsubishi iMiev’s. And at worst, like golf carts.

CDAVIS

Nix said:
“First, the Model S hits Top Gear right where it hurts — It has no gears to shift, and thus no “Top Gear”.”


+1
lol…brilliant…thank you for that one…

Taser54

A 1 speed is top gear.

Nix

Don’t harsh my jokes with logic!! =)

ModernMarvelFan

Actually Tesla could use another gear Or top gear to get the top speed matching the super car realm of 200 mph with its low Cd…

Lensman

Perhaps you’re not aware that Tesla tried, and failed, not once but twice to get a two-speed transmission engineered for its first car, the Roadster. They finally went with a fixed ratio gearbox instead, because both attempts at a transmission failed to hold up to the high torque involved in an EV with superior acceleration.

ModernMarvelFan

“Perhaps you’re not aware that Tesla tried, and failed, not once but twice to get a two-speed transmission engineered for its first car, the Roadster. They finally went with a fixed ratio gearbox instead, because both attempts at a transmission failed to hold up to the high torque involved in an EV with superior acceleration”

Perhaps you are NOT aware that Tesla failed in their first design doesn’t mean it can’t be done.

It just means that Tesla’s design sucked. It needs a far better design.

If Tesla wants to crack the 200mph barrier without losing its low end acceleration, it needs more gears. Simple as that.

Saying that just because Tesla failed before it can’t be done now is as stupid as it gets…

jeffhre

Model S is always in “Top Gear.”

Phr3d

a bit off-topic, but I think 300 (and counting) positive-ish responses to the article was the most impressive education.

For those aware for a while, there were 30 replies to the roadster, all negatively ill-informed. It’s been a fun five years.