Elon Musk drops cryptic Plaid Tesla Model S hint ahead of Battery Day

Blue Tesla Model S with Plaid Powertrain returns to the Nurburgring. (Credit: Teslarati)

Tesla’s highly-anticipated Battery Day is still several weeks away, but CEO Elon Musk appears to have started posting cryptic teasers about some of the innovations that would be introduced at the event. Based on a recent post on Twitter, it appears that Tesla’s Plaid Model S, and perhaps even the Plaid Model X, may be unveiled at Battery Day. 

Ever the internet’s resident meme lord, Elon Musk recently posted a photo of Herbert Ruggles Tarlek, Jr., a character on the television situation comedy WKRP in Cincinnati, which ran from 1978 to 1982. The character was noted for his loud plaid suits, which were usually dominated by bold colors and patterns. Musk’s tweet noted that “One day soon, I will wear this outfit.” 

Musk’s statement was simple, though references to plaid patterns were promptly related by the Tesla community to the company’s upcoming Plaid Model S and X and Battery Day, which is scheduled to be held on September 22. While the Herb Tarlek image may be a simple act of jest from the CEO, it should be noted that Musk is noted for dropping cryptic hints about Tesla’s upcoming products. 

Musk posted something similar back in 2014, when he noted that it was “about time to unveil the D,” referring to the Model S P85D, the first vehicle in Tesla’s lineup with two electric motors. Musk’s references to a “D” incited a notable amount of memes and lighthearted posts from the Tesla community then, considering the connotations of the letter on the internet. Musk also started posting about lemurs on Twitter in the days leading up to the release of the Mid-Range Model 3. 

Tesla’s Plaid variants of the Model S and Model X are poised to be released as the new top-tier versions of the company’s flagship sedan and SUV. Announced last year, Musk noted that the Plaid Model S will have three electric motors, similar to the next-generation Roadster, and that the vehicle will feature seven seats. Most importantly, the Plaid Model S will also be track-capable like the Model 3, likely due to new battery and powertrain tech. 

Prototypes of the Plaid Model S were spotted on the Nurburgring last year, and over their stay at the noted racetrack, the two test units ended up breaking the unofficial record set by a Porsche Taycan Turbo prototype, a car that was bred to be at home on the track. So far, details about the Plaid Model S remain unknown, though speculations point to a potential interior and exterior refresh in the near future. 

Simon Alvarez: Simon is a reporter with a passion for electric cars and clean energy. Fascinated by the world envisioned by Elon Musk, he hopes to make it to Mars (at least as a tourist) someday.
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