How Does The Tesla Model S Plaid Compare To The Porsche Taycan, Audi e-tron GT, Lucid Air And Mercedes-Benz EQS?

Let's take a closer look at Tesla's latest EV speed machine

Tesla’s taken another step forward on performance.

On paper, there’s no denying the brand new Tesla Model S Plaid is a performance beast. Last night, though, we had another opportunity to actually see it in action, as CEO Elon Musk did an acceleration run on the test loop right outside the company’s Fremont, California factory last night. With 1,020 horsepower, a quoted 200 mph top speed and sub-2 second 0-60 time (not to mention a 9.23 second quarter-mile time), the Plaid aims to move the whole game forward not just among its main rivals, but to show just what sort of performance electric cars can achieve.

Here’s the thing, though: Tesla knows it can’t get away with just fitting another electric motor — as automakers in the old days would have packed a big engine into its mainstream models — and call it a day. As direct rivals to its flagship sedan crop up year by year, the company gave its aging Model S a much needed revamp, offering updated interior styling and technology to go with the sheer performance.

Headline interior changes include an updated 17-inch infotainment screen driven by substantially more powerful hardware allowing movies and video games to play at 60 frames per second (with another screen in the rear), steering “yoke” (replacing the standard wheel), a new 22-speaker premium audio system with over-the-air update capability and a diffused HVAC system that eschews traditional vents, offering a much cleaner interior look.

Performance, battery size, range and price: How the Tesla Model S Plaid stacks up

At $129,990 to start (before destination, taxes, fees and so on), the Tesla Model S Plaid is a significant hit to your wallet. However, even against its main rivals it still comes out as a relative performance bargain, in most cases. Here’s a closer look at how it comes together (on paper) against the Porsche Taycan and its platform-mate Audi e-tron GT, as well as the forthcoming Lucid Air and Mercedes-Benz EQS.

On those last two, there’s still more information pending. The Lucid Air has yet to reveal all the details on its base “Pure” model (due out by 2023), while we have yet to see range or price figures for the EQS.

By the specs:

ModelHorsepower0-60Battery SizeRangePrice
Tesla Model S Plaid1,020 hp1.99 sec100 kW390 miles$129,990
Tesla Model S Long Range~420 hp (not disclosed)3.7 sec100 kW412 miles$79,990
Audi RS e-tron GT637 hp3.9 sec93.4 kWh232 miles$107,100
Audi e-tron GT522 hp 3.1 sec93.4 kWh238 miles$99,900
Mercedes-Benz EQS580516 hp4.1 sec107.8 kWhTBATBA
Mercedes-Benz EQS450329 hp5.5 sec107.8 kWhTBATBA
Porsche Taycan Turbo S750 hp2.6 sec93.4 kWh192 miles$185,000
Porsche Taycan Turbo*670 hp3.0 sec93.4 kWh201 miles$150,900
Porsche Taycan 4S*522 hp3.8 sec79.2 kWh**199 miles$103,800
Porsche Taycan (base)*402 hp5.1 sec79.2 kWh**200 miles$79,900
Lucid Air Dream Edition1,080 hp2.3 sec113.0 kWh503 miles$169,000
Lucid Air Grand Touring800 hp3.0 sec113.0 kWh517 miles$139,000
Lucid Air Touring620 hp3.5 secTBA406 miles$95,000