Tesla Model S and Model X get radical new interior, plus faster Plaid variants
Changes to Tesla Model S and Tesla Model X include all-new dashboard, upgraded tech, and high-performance Model S Plaid+ with 520-mile range and more than 1000bhp...
On sale 2022 | Price from £83,980
Pictures revealed last night show both cars with a steering wheel that has no upper section, presumably to give the driver a better view of the digital instrument panel behind. The design was apparently inspired by aircraft controls, with Tesla describing the new-look wheel as a "stalkless steering yoke".
Unfortunately, it seems likely that Tesla will have to come up with a different design before UK sales begin, because the yoke approach wouldn't currently be legal here.
Elsewhere, the portrait-orientated touchscreen infotainment system of today's cars has been ditched in favour of a 17in landscape unit that looks to be better integrated into the dashboard.
This runs new software with the processing power of 10 teraflops (yes, that's really a thing), meaning the in-car games that you can play are comparable with those on modern gaming consoles. Plus, there's a new an 8.0in touchscreen mounted at the back of the centre console, giving rear-seat passengers access to various entertainment functions.
A 22-speaker, 960-watt audio system is standard, and new microphones have been fitted to offer active noise-cancelling, which should improve refinement.
Beyond their new interiors, the big news is the introduction of Tesla Model S Plaid and Model X Plaid variants, which use three electric motors to produce a whopping 1006bhp. In the Model S this is said to be enough for 0-60mph in 1.99sec – faster than all but the most outrageous supercars.
The larger, heavier Model X Plaid isn't quite as rapid, requiring 2.5sec, but that still makes it around a second quicker than the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid.
There will also be a Model S Plaid+, which increases the range from an estimated 390 miles to more than 520 miles (on the official US EPA test) and cuts the 0-60mph time still further.
Finally, Tesla claims that all variants benefit from new battery technology, which gives "more power and endurance in all conditions".
UK deliveries of the revised Tesla Model S and Model X will begin in 2022, with prices starting at £83,980 and £90,980 respectively. This rises to £110,980 for the Plaid versions of each, while the Model S Plaid+ will set you back £130,980.
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