The Tesla brand is known for innovation and technological advances. Now they have added acceleration to the lineup. Ludicrous Mode enables Tesla models to go from 0 to 60 mph in under 3 seconds.
The Tesla Model S with Ludicrous Mode are:
- Model S Performance P90D from 2015-2017
- Model S Performance P100D from 2016-2020
Not all Model S cars are available with Ludicrous Mode, and as of 2021, no new cars are being manufactured with this option, rather the newer version’s will have “Plaid” mode.
Read on to discover the different models available that come equipped with Ludicrous Mode and some important distinctions.
Tesla Model S Available with Ludicrous Mode
The Tesla Model S has always come with two trim packages. These are the Dual Motor AWD Long Range or the Tri Motor AWD package, which contain the boosting power of Ludicrous (now Plaid) mode. Buyers can choose from a longer-lasting battery with a further range or a shorter-range package with more acceleration power.
It’s important to note that only the Tri Motor package has Ludicrous Mode as an option.
The P90D and P100D (released late 2017) versions of the Model S Performance both have a Ludicrous Mode option as well. The P100D battery is stronger than the previous P90D battery, so it can have a slightly more powerful takeoff.
Tesla Model S P90D With Ludicrous Mode
This model has a slightly smaller battery but still packs a punch, with 530hp up against the P100D with 680hp.
These P90D models are generally cheaper than the P100D packages and were only offered until the P100D upgrade was released in 2017. Each has successive improvements and differences. The options for Ludicrous Mode here include:
- 2015 P90D Model S Performance: The first production sedan ever to provide acceleration from 0 to 60mph in under 3.0 seconds, a half-second faster than the previous Model S with “Insane Mode.”
- 2016 P90D Model S Performance: Enhanced autopilot was introduced this year and is available on all models produced after 2016. This upgrade is not available on earlier models due to the lack of sensors installed in prior years.
- 2017 P90D Model S Performance: Improved distance from 270 to 290 miles on a full charge, as well as a more streamlined and seamless updated exterior.
After 2017, the P90D was upgraded to the P100D and is no longer available in new models.
Tesla Model S P100D With Ludicrous Mode
In 2016, the Tesla Model S P100D with Ludicrous Mode was released. It was a groundbreaking achievement and launched Tesla into competition with the likes of Ferrari and Lamborghini in regard to rapid acceleration.
These models available with Ludicrous Mode include:
- 2017 P100D Model S Performance: All Model S after this year provided standard AWD rather than just rear-wheel drive.
- 2018 P100D Model S Performance: This model became available in a hatchback rather than the standard sedan in another Model S.
- 2019 P100D Model S Performance: This model is also a hatchback style, with a panoramic roof and double-wishbone suspension.
Each model has improved acceleration over the previous P90D, with horsepower increased to 680 over 532.
In 2020, Plaid Mode was launched and replaced all current production of Ludicrous Mode, so you won’t find anything newer than a 2019 with that option.
Ludicrous Mode’s Effect on the Model S Sticker Price
The actual cost of Ludicrous Mode depends on the model chosen. Initially, when first released, it was an optional $20,000 upgrade offered to Model S Performance and Model X Performance Teslas.
In 2019, Elon Musk dropped the price of the Model 3 but increased the prices of both the Model S and Model X. The goal was to make the Model 3 the more economical of the models offered. With that change, the previously available Ludicrous Mode was folded into the new higher prices of both the Model S and Model X.
Now, used Model S Performance cars with Ludicrous Mode run anywhere from $74,800 for a 2017 with around 30k miles to a 2018 for $96,500 with about the same mileage.
Does Your Model S Have Ludicrous Mode? Here’s What to Expect
Ludicrous Mode provides rapid acceleration, but what about other features to be aware of? The technological advance also brings several additional questions.
Specifics to consider include:
- Safety features
These details are essential when considering Ludicrous Mode and are vital to understanding how your Model S will drive when this mode is activated.
When to Use Ludicrous Mode
Ludicrous Mode should only be used on a straight stretch of paved roadway, where the speed limit can be reached safely and legally. Due to the rapid acceleration, driving in areas that require handling turns, curves, or other objects is not recommended. The rapid acceleration cuts back on available reaction time.
Turning Ludicrous Mode On and Off
If you are worried about being able to toggle the feature on and off, Tesla has thought of that too. Ludicrous Mode is easily engaged and disengaged. On the vehicle’s center screen, under the “Driving” settings, there is a bar to select one of several modes, “chill,” “sport,” or “ludicrous.”
Pressing on the Ludicrous selection for 5 to 10 seconds will enable a popup box on the screen, reading “Yes, bring it on!”. This will engage Ludicrous Mode, and the extra step makes it nearly impossible to accidentally engage this high-powered feature.
Additional Safety Features Provided for the Model S
Tesla’s safety features are top of the line. There are several safety features in the Model S that consider the rapid acceleration of Ludicrous Mode and provide increased protection:
- Crumple zones provide empty space in case of a collision where the car can be impacted and crumpled in, while maintaining structural integrity and safety for the occupants.
- Battery placement and fortification reduces rollover risk and strengthens the interior of the Model S.
- Automatic emergency braking uses several of the Model S 12 sensors and eight cameras to detect and avoid collisions faster than a driver alone.
- The Model S (along with Model 3 and Model X) have the lowest injury probability of any vehicle tested in the New Car Assessment Program, regulated by the U.S. Government.
Level of Ludicrous Mode Usage
Frequent usage of Ludicrous Mode can stress internal components of the Model S and should be watched closely with regular maintenance and services. Some buyers report reduced amps (1600 to 1500) after about a year of continual Ludicrous Mode launches.
Plaid Mode Has Replaced Ludicrous Mode
If rapid acceleration modes are a selling point for you, there’s another, even more updated option. Plaid Mode was rolled out recently from Tesla and shaves another half-second off the 0 to 60 acceleration timeline. This has effectively replaced all previous Ludicrous Mode options in the Model S.
Rather than Ludicrous Mode’s average of 2.5 seconds, Plaid Mode now offers acceleration of the same speed in just under 2 seconds, clocking in at 1.99 on the Model S.
The Tesla Model S Plaid trim package is currently the fastest accelerating car in production and has 1,020 horsepower. This trim package is available in both Model S beginning in 2021, and the Model X Plaid is expected to launch in the first months of 2022.
A new Model S Tesla with Plaid Mode is your best bet if looking for the quickest possible acceleration. For used models, the Model S Performance and Model X Performance can still provide Ludicrous Mode, but with different features for each year. It all depends on what you want in your next Tesla.