A recent sighting from a Tesla community member has revealed that the electric car maker's Plaid Model S units that were used for testing at the Nurburgring in Germany have come home to the United States. A photo of the vehicles was shared online, showing the two Model S Plaid units being transported on a car carrier.
Looking at the two Plaid Model S in the recently captured photo, which was shared by r/TeslaMotors subreddit member and Model S owner u/Andreweller, the two vehicles appear to be otherwise undamaged. This is quite interesting since previous reports have indicated that the red Plaid Model S was rendered unusable following a crash during a high-speed lap. The entire vehicle was not photographed in the recent sighting, but the red all-electric sedan does not appear to be very damaged at all based on its recent photo.
Also interesting is the interior of the blue Plaid Model S, which seemed to be equipped with a center screen that's mounted the same way as the Model 3's landscape-oriented display. The vehicle also seemed to have a fully-equipped interior, unlike the suggestions of previous reports, which alleged that the blue Plaid Model S was stripped save for its driver's seat. Either way, seeing the two Plaid prototypes home in the United States is quite encouraging, as this suggests that Tesla could start refining the vehicles further to make them even faster.
The two Model S Plaid prototypes, after all, have set impressive unofficial records in the Nurburgring. The red unit which allegedly crashed, for one, was the same car that reportedly set a 7:23 lap during Tesla's initial excursion to the German racetrack. This was already very impressive and it already bested the Porsche Taycan Turbo's time of 7:42, but Tesla did not seem to be fully satisfied. Prior to leaving the Nurburgring after its second excursion into the racetrack, Tesla's blue Model S Plaid prototype reportedly set a time of 7:13, almost 30 seconds faster than the Taycan Turbo's lap time, as per Auto Motor und Sport.
Tesla's adventures in the Nurburgring started after Elon Musk noted on Twitter that the Model S will try to set a record of its own at the nearly 13-mile closed circuit. That announcement came not long after Porsche posted a 7:42 unofficial record that was set by its Taycan Turbo prototype, a number that was notably impressive at the time. Similar to Tesla's unofficial 7:23 and 7:13 records, however, Porsche's 7:42 lap was unofficial as well.
Elon Musk has provided a few details about the Plaid Model S, noting that the vehicle will have a three-motor setup that would allow the all-electric sedan to perform even more impressively than the already-ludicrous Raven Model S Performance. The Tesla CEO has also mentioned that the Plaid Model S will be equipped with the company's rear-facing jump seats, boosting the car's seating capacity to seven. Musk has also hinted that the Plaid Model S will be more expensive than the company's current Model S line, though it would still be more affordable than rivals.
More pictures of the two Plaid Tesla Model S prototypes could be viewed here.