Black Diamond, Dual motor Winter Tour 2015
It was one morning in March 2015 like any other that we had the chance to discover in our email box an invitation from Tesla to its event of the moment: the Black Diamond, Dual Motor Winter Tour. What is behind this extended name? It is in fact a 3-day event offering to discover the new motorization of the Tesla Model S on the circuit. And it's not just any engine, but the 700 hp and the famous Insane mode that has caused so much buzz in video on the internet.
Appointment is therefore made with the Tesla team for Saturday March 28 on the Marcoussis circuit in the 91 at 5 p.m. In order to guarantee a personalized welcome and avoid waiting for hours, the test takes place by appointment. Very pleasant. On the road, a Model S at the start and some Tesla flags, before arriving at the event which is marked and personalized in the colors of Black Diamond. And this is not the only customization made by Tesla in the colors of its event. The circuit’s reception hall has also been completely refurbished and repainted to become a real, very cozy little mountain chalet.
After registering the future Black Birds drivers with the Tesla hostesses, the team invites us to have a drink at the bar while waiting to move on to the presentation of the event.
“Black Diamond” is the name given in the USA to ski slopes that are “blacker than black”, if not impossible. According to Tesla, this represents very well the characteristics of the brand: the impossible mission of making an electric vehicle with real autonomy, real design, phenomenal power and road holding that is impossible to fault. There follows a brief reminder of the Tesla philosophy, the development strategy, the roadster, the Model S, soon the Model X and the Model 3, and more particularly a quick presentation of the Tesla Model S P85D, model at the honor today.
A quick reminder: the Model S is available in 2 battery sizes (70 and 85 kWh) and 3 engines (Normal propulsion, Normal 4-wheel drive, and Performance 4-wheel drive). This is the latest model, 700 hp, that we will test on the circuit. Base price: €100,540. As you will have understood, the idea of this event is to push this new Tesla to its limits.
This is something very specific to all electric vehicles: rapid and powerful acceleration. Indeed, with almost no mechanics, with an engine located directly between the wheels, the reaction time of these vehicles is very fast, the acceleration very constant (there is only one speed) and almost all the power available at any speed. Real day-to-day driving pleasure, even on lower horsepower vehicles.
Here, no less than 700 hp, and a 0 to 100 announced at 3.4 sec! Suffice to say that we had only one desire: to take control! Surprise: the model we take, nicknamed Batman, is equipped with the new “exclusive seats” option. This one, released after the purchase of the Model S Black Birds, replaces the 3-seater rear bench seat with two heated seats, similar to the front seats, and a rather well thought-out central armrest. Our opinion: an option to take into consideration if you don't need a 5-seater car, and you have a small additional budget (count nearly 7000€, the "premium rear seats at 2000€ requiring compulsory to take the “premium interior pack” and the “glacial pack”).
Direction therefore the circuit where a row of flags awaits us. "We are often compared to Space Mountain" we are told. Time to line up and let's go: foot in. And indeed, it feels like a roller coaster. The power and acceleration released by its two engines are simply impressive. We immediately find ourselves glued to the seats, the neck stiff and the stomach in the chest. A very surprising sensation, even more so for the passengers. Videos on the internet don't lie. oitrine. Une sensation très surprenante, encore plus pour les passagers. Les vidéos sur internet ne mentent donc pas.
Featuring 4WD, the Tesla P 85 D is allegedly impossible to drag. Never mind, a wide part of the track is deliberately wet. Once again, surprise: the two separate motors and the separate management of the 4 wheels, combined with the very low center of gravity of the Tesla completely prevent the Tesla Model S from slipping. And it is not for lack of having pointed, accelerated, counter-pointed.
In order to really compare, we were able to do a few laps with the Tesla Black Birds on the circuit, and it was not unworthy! Admittedly only 5.6 sec for the 0 to 100, but we are still in one of the fastest sedans in the world.
To conclude, we found this new version of the Tesla Model S very, very impressive. We strongly encourage you if you have the opportunity to try it, if only to experience this totally unique feeling of such powerful, instantaneous and silent acceleration. Ordinary Ile-de-France mortals will be more than satisfied with the 400 hp of the standard model, but if you feel like it, it would cost you just over 100,000e to be able to travel with confidence on slippery ground.
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