While the Tesla Model 3 Performance will not be able to beat the Porsche Taycan in a timed lap around a track, the midsize family sedan could outlast the German-made four-door sports car in an endurance race. This is according to Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who recently provided several updates on the electric car maker’s upcoming Model S Plaid Powertrain variant in a series of tweets.
While responding to a follower who inquired if the $56,000 Model 3 Performance will be able to beat the $150,000 Taycan around a closed circuit, Musk stated that Tesla’s most affordable vehicle will likely lose to the all-electric Porsche. Musk did explain that the race between the two all-electric vehicles will be “very close” nonetheless.
Seemingly as an afterthought, Musk soon added that the Model 3 Performance would actually be able to beat the Porsche Taycan in an endurance race, simply because it has more range. Musk even playfully hinted at a potential performance boost coming to the Model 3 series, responding with a cryptic “You never know…” to a follower who asked if Tesla could still squeeze out more performance out of the midsize sedan.
Musk’s statement about the Model 3 Performance’s capability to outlast the Taycan in an endurance race does hold some merit, considering its superior range and efficiency. The Model 3 Performance has an EPA rated range of 310 miles per charge, after all, which is a substantial lead over the Porsche Taycan’s WLTP range of 236.74-279.61 miles per charge. This is a key difference-maker between the two vehicles, especially since the WLTP is generally more generous with range estimates compared to the EPA. Thus, at least in theory, the Model 3 could go around a track more times than the Taycan before it needs to recharge its batteries.
Despite their massive price and range discrepancy, the Porsche Taycan Turbo and the Model 3 Performance actually have fairly comparable specs. The Taycan Turbo has a 0-60 mph time of 3.0 seconds, while the Model 3 Performance sprints to 60 mph in 3.2 seconds. In terms of top speed, the Taycan maxes out at 161 mph while the Model 3 Performance maxes out at 162 mph. Overall, a race between these two vehicles in a closed circuit will most definitely be a great match, as it will be a battle between a premium all-electric sports car that’s born and bred for the track and a family sedan that looks far too tame for its ferocity.
Perhaps the real difference-maker in the Model 3 vs Taycan battle would be Tesla’s capability to unlock more performance out of its vehicle. Musk’s recent playful response would suggest that Tesla has some options to explore on this front. And considering a 2016 tweet where Musk responded positively to the suggestion of introducing Ludicrous Mode for the Model 3, it appears that Tesla might have some more tricks up its sleeve for its resident bang-for-your-buck performance car.