The current-generation Tesla Model S has been with us since 2012. During that time, the electric sedan has received some major updates. However, the exterior fundamentals of the Model S remain fairly unchanged. As a result, the fans of the American carmaker have been looking forward to a potential refresh. To this end, InsideEVs reports that a mysterious Model S prototype was recently spotted with some unusual upgrades.
What upgrades could this Tesla Model S feature?
In the video published by The Kilowatts, we see various clips and images of what appears to be a Tesla Model S prototype. Upon first look, three visual changes stand out. The first is the bodywork, which appears to be widened considerably. This is especially noticeable in the rear quarter panel. Just below the widened panel sits a set of what appears to be wider black wheels. Additionally, there is no chrome trim throughout the exterior. It is all finished in gloss black.
When we take a closer look at this Tesla Model S prototype, we notice the new rear diffuser. On standard Model S’, the diffuser is quite simple. However, in this prototype, it seems the changes may have been put in place to test performance. According to InsideEVs, the prototype also features brand-new headlights. Thankfully, InsideEVs reports that this will likely be introduced with a refreshed Model S.
InsideEVs reports that these subtle but apparent performance touches likely indicate that we’re looking at a prototype of the high-performance Plaid model. As it stands, the model is set to make its debut sometime in 2021.
What is a Tesla Model S Plaid?
The Tesla Model S Plaid is set to be the newest variant of the electric sedan set to arrive sometime this year. As the prototype’s performance upgrades suggest, the Plaid is set to be the fastest Model S ever. According to Tesla, the Plaid will reportedly reach 60 mph in under two seconds. Additionally, it’ll be able to reach a top speed of 200 mph. The top speed alone is already quite impressive. The Performance trim level currently tops out at 163 mph.
However, the most important detail of the upcoming EV is its electric range. The Tesla Model S Plaid will reportedly cover an estimated 520 miles of range. The cost for all of this, $139,990 in base trim. Select all of the available options, and the upcoming model tops out at around $158,490. However, the peculiar detail of the Plaid is that there is no image of an upgraded body on the carmaker’s site. This likely means we will see all of the visual changes once the model officially arrives.
While information is quite limited, there is a high chance that the prototype seen above could be the Plaid in disguise.
How old is this electric sedan?
The Tesla Model S made its official debut all the way back in 2012. Since its introduction, the EV company has released various over the air updates. Additionally, the sedan got a subtle refresh back in 2016. However, the interior remains largely unchanged.
To this end, InsideEVs reports that the upcoming refreshed model likely features major improvements to its cabin. As a result, the Model S may be an aging model with an all-new look. For now, all we can do is wait and see just how refreshed this new Tesla is once it arrives.