Tesla increases Model Y Performance range to 291 miles with Überturbine wheels

Tesla Model Y Performance 291 mile range (Credit: Tesla/July 2020)

Tesla has increased the range of the Model Y Performance from an EPA-rated 280 miles to 291 miles when equipped with the factory 21-inch Überturbine wheels.

The range boost represents an approximate 3.9% increase despite the vehicle having no noticeable hardware differences, according to the description outlined on Tesla’s Model Y online configurator. Model Y Long Range retains its 316-mile rating.

While Tesla has not indicated the reason for Model Y’s additional 11 miles in driving range, one can presume that software updates to improve the efficiency of the vehicle’s independent dual electric motors are the primary reason for the increase.

Model Y Performance is currently offered with only the heavyset 21″ Überturbine wheels, which tips the scale at a whopping 65 lbs (29 kg) each. The heavy rotational mass is the main culprit for the decrease in range over the  20″ Induction wheels that Tesla briefly offered for Performance buyers. Model Y Performance, when equipped with smaller diameter and lighter wheels, can gain a noticeable range boost as well as improved 0-60 mph acceleration times.

By improving the software algorithm for stop-and-go driving, specifically when putting the heavy Überturbine wheels in motion from a standstill, Tesla can improve the efficiency of the dual motors that work in tandem. This, thereby, reduces the amount of energy needed to accelerate the vehicle from a stop. The additional energy savings translates to an overall improvement in the driving range of the vehicle while having no impact on maximum power output and 0-60 mph acceleration times.

This isn’t the first time Tesla has improved the range of its vehicles through software. Model 3 has previously benefitted from a 4.1% increase in range after the company released a new over-the-air update.

Tesla Model Y’s improved 291-miles of EPA-rated range comes on the same day the company reduced the price of both the Long Range and Performance variants.

Tesla increases Model Y Performance range to 291 miles with Überturbine wheels
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