This Tesla Model S Plaid has beaten the Porsche 911 GT2 RS at Laguna Seca

By topgear, 14 August 2021

We’re familiar with the work of Unplugged Performance here at TG. Based in California, just round the corner from the Space X headquarters, they take Teslas and give them some neat and (mostly) measured performance upgrades.

The batteries and motors are untouched, but suspension, brakes and lightweighting all receive some focus to add substance to those wild out-the-box 0-95km/h and top speed times.

Unplugged have been proving their mettle by slaying supercars in lap record tables across America, and today they’ve claimed a few scalps at Laguna Seca. Y’know, the one with the big scary Corkscrew.

This is Unplugged’s Tesla Model S Plaid, aka Dark Helmet. Stopped sniggering at the back? You should, because it’s quicker around Laguna than a Porsche 911 GT2 RS, and just 0.6secs off the production car record… held by the McLaren Senna. Crucially, 911, Model S and Senna all had the same driver, one Randy Pobst. He knows his way around the circuit as well as you now know your way from the living room to the fridge.

Randy and Dark Helmet (seriously, stop it) set a 1m 28.2s lap, snaring the production EV lap record in the process. Though the word production is naturally a little up for debate; the huge wing on the back gives away how much work Unplugged’s done on the aero, while the suspension is now fully adjustable with race wheels and Yokohama tyres at the end of Bilstein race shocks. What Unplugged promises is that it’s still a 2.2-tonne car with driver on board.

“Thank you Elon Musk and Tesla for building a better future that goes beyond what is needed to deliver a clinical dose of kick-ass as well,” Unplugged said, before promising further mods – surely with their crosshairs hovering over the Senna’s lap time.

Thoughts on what they’ve done?

STORY Stephen Dobie

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