The 2015 Tesla Model S P90D was recognized by Car and Driver on its “Top 10 Quickest Cars of the Decade” list. Ranked as the eighth fastest car of the 2010’s by the popular automotive publication, the P90D was the only fully-electric car to make it on the list.
Car and Driver (C&D) released the list on December 7, and writer Connor Hoffman states, “There are quicker Teslas, but the company refuses to let us test them. So, from the slim number of Teslas we have tested, the Model S P90D is the quickest one to the 60 mph mark. It was also the first sub 3.0-second zero-to-60 mph sedan we ever tested, reaching the speed in 2.7 seconds.” The 2016 Model S P90D C&D tested was $134,200 and packed a 532 horsepower Dual Motor set up with a weight of 4,842 pounds. It was ranked higher than the 2020 Chevrolet Corvette that came in a #10, and the 2019 Porsche 911 GT3 RS at #9, both capable of a 2.8 second 0-60 MPH acceleration time.
In terms of Hoffman stating there are some Teslas that the company doesn’t allow them to test, he is likely speaking of the yet-to-be-released Tesla Roadster or the Model S Plaid variant that broke several records earlier this year, the P90D is still one of the most impressive vehicles the prestigious automotive publication has had the privilege to test, according to their 2016 review of the car. C&D tested the P90D “Ludicrous” in February 2016, and noted its performance in the publications testing facility as “shocking.” At the time of the review, it was one of only five vehicles C&D had tested that consistently averaged more than 1.0 g forces during the first second of acceleration, joining vehicles like the Porsche 911 Turbo S and the Lamborghini Huracán LP610-4 as some of the only cars in the world capable of this.
“…it’s the first production car with four doors to crack the 3.0-second zero-to-60-mph barrier, doing it in 2.8 seconds. In 30-to-50-mph passing acceleration, it trumps the Tesla Roadster Sport’s all-time record run of 1.5 seconds, also by two-tenths of a second. The P90D’s 11.1-second, 121-mph quarter-mile run, achieved with no hint of tire smoke or exhaust ruckus, merits VIP parking at NHRA headquarters. The Model S P85D in Insane mode, formerly the quickest Tesla, was a half-second slower to 60 and 0.7 second and 7 mph pokier in the quarter-mile,” the review written by Don Sherman said.
P90D has reputation for silencing doubters who say electric cars cannot outperform its petrol-based counterpart. The Model S P90D has regularly outperformed vehicles in drag races courtesy of its 530+ horsepower Dual Motor setup that has been clocked at 10.8 seconds on a quarter-mile dragstrip.
In a 2014 interview with 60 Minutes correspondent Scott Pelley, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said that one of his motives for starting an electric car manufacturer was to “at least address the false perception that people had that an electric car had to be ugly and slow and boring like a golf cart. Musk and Tesla have repeatedly released high-performance vehicles that are battery-powered, do no damage to the environment after production has ended, and regularly outperform some of the most notable sports cars in the world.
Car and Driver listed the 2015 Porsche 918 Spyder as the quickest car of the decade, with a 2.1 second 0-60 MPH time. The Spyder utilizes a 608 horsepower 4.6 liter V8 and two electric motors to achieve this acceleration.