Check your six, Tesla. Your spot on the throne may soon be taken.
Tesla has done a pretty good job of making the electric car a palatable good for even the most diehard enthusiasts. Exhaust note or not, it’s hard to argue with a 0-60 mph time that places it into the same camp as the Porsche 918 Spyder and a quarter mile stampede that shames a Dodge Challenger Hellcat. But it always lacked in one area: top speed. Once the novelty of being slammed by a wall of torque wore off, maximum speed was a bit lackluster. to the dismay of true speed lovers.
It could lead some to mistakenly believe that all electric cars are quarter mile rockstars and disappointments on the Autobahn, but Lucid Motors wants to inform us that that’s not the case. Recently, it took a Lucid Air Alpha to the Transportation Research Facility in Ohio and hit an electronically limited top speed of 217 mph. Fitted with a parachute, safety cage, and aerodynamic aids as precautionary safety measures, the engineers found that the car still had plenty of room to stop without resorting to the parachute, so they decided to give it another go, this time without the electronic limiter in order to see what the car could pull off when it wasn't restrained.
Prior to the second run, Lucid Motors decided to update some of the car’s software following lessons it learned from the first test run. Previously, the Lucid Air Alpha’s self-leveling suspension was not able to adjust quickly enough to stabilize the car when it was approaching 200 mph. Temperatures in the front motor were also hotter than computer models anticipated, so Lucid Motors updated both systems in preparation for the second run. This time around, the Lucid Air Alpha hit an impressive 235.44 mph before the driver had to slow down. Let’s take a moment to appreciate that for a second because though the Tesla Model S still holds the spot as the ultimate well-rounded electric sedan on the market, it can "only" go 155 mph.
With a price tag similar to that of the Model S, could Lucid Motors be on the cusp of replacing the Tesla as the most well-rounded luxury performance electric car? We'll have to wait and see, but rest assured this isn't the last we'll hear of the Lucid Air's ridiculous speed as the automaker wants to give yet another shot at humiliating Tesla by going even faster.