Drag Race: Tesla Model S Plaid crushes the 1,111 hp Lucid Air Dream Performance
It was perhaps the most anticipated drag race competition within the electric vehicle community — pitting the Tesla Model S Plaid against the newly-launched Lucid Air Dream Edition Performance. And, as the name suggests, this is the performance variant of the Lucid Air luxury electric sedan.
Above: Tesla Model S Plaid vs. Lucid Air Dream Edition Performance in a drag race (Source: DragTimes / YouTube)
Although both of these cars were designed to be luxury sedans, with the presence of immense power via an electric drivetrain and the ability to deliver instant torque, these two electric beasts are built for the dragstrip.
Since Lucid Air is also considered a direct competitor to the Tesla Model S, drag racing them against each other gives us some good information for comparative analysis.
Interestingly, when Lucid revealed the price of the base trim of Air back in 2020, Tesla changed the price of the base Model S to $69,420. So you could surmise that Tesla does take Lucid seriously (albeit niche) within the EV space.
Above: Tesla Model S Plaid vs. Lucid Air Dream Edition Performance specs and price comparison (Data sources: Manufacturer specs, Compiled by Iqtidar Ali / TeslaOracle.com)
Looking at the comparison table (see above) between these two electric cars, Lucid Air does seem to have scored better than the Model S. But this comes at an additional price of $39,100 and that is definitely not small change.
That said, kudos to the Lucid team for achieving a great efficiency number that resulted in a more than enough 471 miles of range for the Air Dream Edition Performance variant.
Lucid also designed the Air with an amazing drag coefficient of 0.21 Cd, this is very close to the Tesla Model S’ 0.208 Cd. The lower the aerodynamic drag, the more an electric vehicle delivers range and performance. Model S Plaid is also 408 lbs lighter than the Lucid Air Dream Edition Performance. Lucid is substantially heavier because of its larger battery pack.
DragTimes host, Brooks Weisblat, reached out to Lucid to provide him with a test unit. However, the automaker refused. The reason? Lucid claims that they are marketing the car in terms of range and efficiency, not drag racing performance.
However, a person who owns both the Tesla Model S Plaid and the Lucid Air Dream Edition Performance cars brought them to the Hennessey Performance dragstrip in Houston, Texas for the ultimate challenge.
In the 1st attempt, both cars started the race at 92% state-of-charge (SoC) and both used their launch controls (called Dragstrip Mode in the Plaid). Here, Tesla Plaid totally outclassed the Lucid Air Performance.
In the 2nd round, Model S Plaid had its launch control disabled while Lucid Air used launch control, only then the Lucid Performance was able to win.
In the 3rd attempt, Model S Plaid had the Dragstrip Mode enabled again it won this race again with ease. The 4th and final rolling race at 25 mph also resulted in the win of the Tesla Model S Plaid.