Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

Autocross in a Performance Model 3

gcmak

Member
Jul 26, 2019
208
180
San Francisco
I attended a small course autocross event at Sonoma Raceway yesterday with my stock 2019 P3D.
Being a very short course with not too many people, I had a chance to do more runs than my body could handle.
The car was a champ!
This was my third autocross (I'm no expert and this is more "for fun"). I previously did this in a VW Golf R. I was impressed by how tail happy the Model 3 can be (spun out multiple times), but also felt how darn heavy this car is...snap oversteer is basically unrecoverable under most situations I tried yesterday.

I drained ~40% battery throughout the day at around ~1,600wh/mi.
Another P3D was there, also stock, and we ran different tire pressures. His was 42 cold, mine was 45 cold. His tires were worse for wear getting down to the sidewall area.

Excited to get on the track with this car, but need to wait for charging infrastructure. Another Model 3 driver who was on track yesterday was struggling at Sonoma.

Here's a short video of the day's events. A good mix of cars and great people.
(my videos are not monetized, just created for fun)
 

gcmak

Member
Jul 26, 2019
208
180
San Francisco
I hear it can be expensive for parts that wear out quickly doing these? Did you buy brakes, rotors, pistons and tires? Nice short video.
Autocross or short courses typically kill the tires more than anything else. If you are able to get adjustable camber and tires meant for such conditions, then they'll be more fun and last much longer. As with any motorsport, there's certainly costs associated with it.

A full track day may actually wear out the tires less, but other parts like the brakes will overheat easily.
 

kbecks13

Active Member
Dec 27, 2017
1,914
2,263
SoCal
A full track day may actually wear out the tires less, but other parts like the brakes will overheat easily.

Oh yes, but it really depends on how hard you are pushing on track. You can go through the stock pads in one day or they could be totally fine if you're just "cruising". I've had times where i literally didn't touch the brakes and could get by with just using regen because people were slow and wouldn't let you pass.
 

gcmak

Member
Jul 26, 2019
208
180
San Francisco
Oh yes, but it really depends on how hard you are pushing on track. You can go through the stock pads in one day or they could be totally fine if you're just "cruising". I've had times where i literally didn't touch the brakes and could get by with just using regen because people were slow and wouldn't let you pass.

Not sure I'll find an answer unless I bleed my brakes, but with how little I used my brakes for this event, I have a distinct memory of the one time I stood on my brakes when someone spun in front of me (yes in autocross...can be a separate discussion lol), and at some point during the hard stop, the pedal went further down than normal. Ever since that moment, the brake pedal travel is softer/further.

I actually think I need to find another P3D to feel if my pedal just used to be super firm and now it's "normal" or what. I have driven 2 Model S rentals (non performance models) and those pedals always felt softer to me (like how mine feels now). I'd argue is easier to modulate the brakes now and there's no issue locking them up.

Doesn't quite feel like a situation where I've either cracked my pads or boiled my fluid in previous ICE cars. Not sure if you have any insights or similar experiences. It's like I broke in my brake pedal...lol
 

kbecks13

Active Member
Dec 27, 2017
1,914
2,263
SoCal
Not sure I'll find an answer unless I bleed my brakes, but with how little I used my brakes for this event, I have a distinct memory of the one time I stood on my brakes when someone spun in front of me (yes in autocross...can be a separate discussion lol), and at some point during the hard stop, the pedal went further down than normal. Ever since that moment, the brake pedal travel is softer/further.

Odd, unfortunately that doesn't ring any bells for me. Have you done some hard braking in a safe spot to check if they still actually slow the vehicle like you'd expect? Maybe you felt the ABS engaging slightly on track, but no idea about why it's still doing that

Also, i noticed the multiple cars in your video and was immediately kinda shocked by that. Seems like it could definitely be a bit unsafe depending on how the overlap zones are in terms of car orientation and likelihood of losing control.
 

Lunares

Member
Jul 9, 2018
742
536
San Diego
Odd, unfortunately that doesn't ring any bells for me. Have you done some hard braking in a safe spot to check if they still actually slow the vehicle like you'd expect? Maybe you felt the ABS engaging slightly on track, but no idea about why it's still doing that

Also, i noticed the multiple cars in your video and was immediately kinda shocked by that. Seems like it could definitely be a bit unsafe depending on how the overlap zones are in terms of car orientation and likelihood of losing control.

I'm also extremely surprised to see a track layout like that, seems to be one spin away from two cars smashing into each other. Could just be the perspective.

Also I dont think you have to turn all those things off? Pretty sure track mode does that for you. Or at least I never have.
 

destructure00

Active Member
Mar 2, 2019
1,457
1,618
Scottsdale, AZ
Cool video! I'm wondering if you glazed your pads a bit on that hard stop. Might be a good idea to pull the pads for a visual.

Screenshot_20191113-062011.png
 
  • Like
Reactions: gcmak

gcmak

Member
Jul 26, 2019
208
180
San Francisco
I'm also extremely surprised to see a track layout like that, seems to be one spin away from two cars smashing into each other. Could just be the perspective.

Also I dont think you have to turn all those things off? Pretty sure track mode does that for you. Or at least I never have.
Track mode does turn pretty much everything off, except automatic emergency braking.
 

destructure00

Active Member
Mar 2, 2019
1,457
1,618
Scottsdale, AZ
In my car I also get ice mode (diving into a corner, full brake pedal, no braking force)

Very rarely though and generally only when I make a mistake
I had that happen once early on in a session. Chalked it up to the brakes and/or tires no being warm yet. Went off track that time. What was your circumstance?
 

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top