Hybrids & Electrics

Tesla Model S 2021 Redesign And 520-Mile Range-Competition Stunned

Tesla’s Model S was the first model to help establish Tesla’s electrification cache. Introduced in 2012, it has stayed relatively unchanged with the exception of very minor styling upgrades and software updates. So, the new, redesigned2021 Tesla Model S is news, the least of which is its range increase to 520 miles. Taken altogether the competition is stunned.

But there is more than an increase in range. The exterior has been refreshed, there is more power with 0 to 60 times in under two seconds, and the interior gets an upgrade too, including the crazy yoke steering wheel. Looking more like it came from an airplane, the wheel is causing lots of comments on social media. 

Back in 2018 Tesla founder Elon Musk said there would be no refreshed Model X or Model S

2021 Tesla Model S refresh | Tesla

It was back in 2018 when Tesla founder Elon Musk said there would be no refreshed Model X or Model S. The grand plan was for Tesla to make steady improvements once they were deemed ready. But once the new “Plaid” powertrain was fully tested the idea of a refreshed Model S became more appealing. Rumors that the Plaid version was coming any time has been bouncing around for years. 

One of the improvements you don’t completely notice for this new Model S is that the coefficient of drag has been reduced. It is now competitive with EVs like the Porsche Taycan Turbo and Lucid Air. Tesla hype takes it a step further. It is saying that the new Model S “is the fastest accelerating production car ever made.” We’ll have to get back to you about that claim.

Model S improvements will also be seen on the Model X

2021 Tesla Model S refresh | Tesla

RELATED: Is the Tesla Model S Plaid the Fastest Production Car You Can Buy?

A lot of the Model S improvements will also be seen on the Model X. We don’t know at this time if that includes the large glass roof which now comes standard on the Model S. But it is what’s inside that is worth some looking at in more detail.

First, is the touchscreen which takes on a more Model 3-like look. That includes smaller bezels like those seen on the Cybertruck prototype. Then there’s that steering wheel. Called a “yoke design it looks more applicable for an airplane than a car. While there is still the screen behind the steering wheel there is now also a screen at the end of the console for rear-seat passengers. 

Starting price for the Tesla Model S is $79,990. That gets you the “Long Range” version with dual motors for a 412-mile range. Next is the “Plaid” version at $119,000. It comes with that under two-second 0-60 mph time and a 390-mile range. Top of the heap is the “Plaid+” for $139,000. That gets you the same powerful motors with a range of 520 miles. 

Both of the Plaid versions can attain a 200 mph top speed

Tesla Model S Yoke Steering | Tesla

Both of the Plaid versions can attain a 200 mph top speed-provided you have the right tires. The Long-Range can see a top speed of 155 mph. The Plaid versions also receive the new heat pump from the Model Y. That will allow for many quarter-miles romps-more so than the previous Model S. 

One last note is that the infotainment system has the capacity of 10 teraflops of processing power. That allows for passengers to play high-processing games that can also handle wireless controller support.