Watch The New Tesla Roadster's "Plaid" Mode Rocket The Car From Zero To 81 MPH In An Instant

gif: DragTimes/YouTube (screengrabs)

After Tesla debuted its new Roadster last night, it gave a few folks a test ride to show off “Plaid,” the “beyond ludicrous” launch mode that is said to help rocket the car to 60 mph in under two seconds. Here’s a look at it in action. In the video, the driver actually blows right past 60 mph and hits 81 in what seems like no time, leaving the passenger in awe.


When Tesla announced Ludicrous Mode back in 2015, the company also made mention that the next generation Roadster would get something special called “plaid.” Well, now we’ve seen the new Tesla Roadster, and DragTimes got to take a ride to experience that longitudinal acceleration. Based on DragTimes’ reaction of “Oh Jesus! Oh, woo hoo!” I think it’s safe to say this thing is quick.

When debuting the Roadster last night, Elon Musk said the whole point was “to just give a hard-core smackdown to gasoline cars.” Part of the Roadster delivering that smackdown hinges upon the car’s acceleration performance, which is aided by a new mode called “plaid.”

Elon Musk mentioned plaid back in 2015 when he said this in response to a question about the next-generation Roadster:

There is of course one speed faster than ludicrous, but that is reserved for the next generation Roadster in 4 years: maximum plaid.

The video above doesn’t really show us anything quantitative, but we do get to see a fun animated plaid pattern on the center screen. Plus, the passenger shooting the video is associated with a website that knows a thing or two about launch performance, so if he’s as stunned as he seems in that video, this little Roadster may actually live up to that claimed 1.9-second zero to 60 time. Which would put it in purpose-built rally car car territory.

For fun, here’s another ride-along. Again, the reaction of “Holy crap! Wohhh!!” makes me hopeful that the Roadster’s claimed launch performance could be legit.

Sr. Tech Editor, Jalopnik. Owner of far too many Jeeps (Including a Jeep Comanche). Follow my instagram (@davidntracy). Always interested in hearing from engineers—email me.


Gone In Sixty Two Seconds.