Skip to main content

Thanks to those seeking YouTube glory, we get to see a Tesla Model S Plaid owner sink his EV. But after he submerges the car, he drives it along the bottom of a lake. Then he pilots it back up the other side in what looks like a success to prove the Tesla EV’s “superiority.” But we have questions.

Why did the Tesla Model S Plaid owner drive his car underwater?

A red, fully loaded 2023 Tesla Model S corners on a track.
Tesla Model S Plaid | Tesla

With flooding prevalent in New Zealand, some Tesla owners took offense to suggestions that electric cars faced problems with floodwaters. That prompted a YouTuber to perform a demonstration with his Model S Plaid to prove the naysayers wrong. 

Filling a seven-foot artificial lake to show Tesla’s “Boat Mode” was no problem. While a pal on the far end of the lake waited with a lead attached, “Chillin’ With Chet” prepped his car by sealing the cabin as much as possible. Then he began his dissent. 

Did the Tesla Model S float?

Camera footage shows water beginning to surround the EV as Chet slowly drives it into the lake. Before long, the water rises almost to the roof. But would an air-filled vessel float instead of sink? Chet had some concerns about the car becoming buoyant, thus the tether.

At certain points, the car looks like it wants to float, but that might be the bumpy lake bottom. The Model S stays down, even as the water crests over the roof. However, a couple of shots show barbells on the floor in the rear. 

Was the Tesla weighed down?

Those barbells suggest the trunk and frunk also received similar weight enhancements. Indeed, we wondered why we didn’t see the car before it began its watery descent and after it emerged from the lake. A reason not to show the Model S immediately before and after might be to avoid showing a collapsed suspension from all that added weight.  

Camera views from inside the vehicle show all the door panels, carpet, and seats removed in case the cabin got wet. Some water did begin to blast into the car. Chet sits on an aluminum replacement seat without a cover. Slowly, the Tesla emerges from the lake, triumphant. 

But what about the tether?

We noticed something else. Though we understand Chet needs to be tethered for safety reasons, the Tesla Model S has nowhere to go if it isn’t tethered. And then we see that as the car emerges, the rope looks taut as if it were pulling the EV from the beginning.

We’re not casting aspersions, but these so-called trials aren’t like timing events with rules and technology computing speeds, times, and such. These tests are just exhibitions. So without those efforts legitimizing what we see in Chillin’ With Chet’s video, it’s simply entertainment. 


Marina Begins to Boil After Tesla Model X Falls In