Did the Tesla S Really “Smoke” the Challenger Hellcat?

The Tesla S P85D is impressive, but its not that impressive.

Everybody relax. Car blogs blew up last night with posts claiming the Tesla Model S P85D “smoked” the 2015 Dodge Challenger Hellcat, one of the world’s most powerful muscle cars, in a drag race. A drag race! We were skeptical, but curious (nice click-baiting, people). The Model S P85 stocks twin electric motors that endow it with a 691 horses and has previously been clocked hitting 60mph from a dead stop in blistering 3.2 seconds. Serious stuff. But we know from experience that the Hellcat is a monster, a snarling, tire-smoking example of modern muscle at its finest, with a 6.2L Supercharged HEMI V8 pushing out 702hp and has hit 60mph in 2.9 seconds. It’s a bad, bad machine. Could it lose a whisper-quiet electric car? 

As you can see the answer is a resounding “Oh hell no.” The Hellcat’s driver stutters off the line embarrassingly, allowing the Model S to start few seconds before the Hellcat. In drag racing time, that’s an eternity. Yes, the Tesla S defeats the Hellcat in this instance, but it by no means bests the car. That would be like saying a fighter defeated

Mike Tyson

because Tyson tripped on a sweaty towel.  The day will undoubtedly come when a plug-in will best the mightiest petrol; but that day is certainly not here yet.