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Tesla Roadster Sport NEDRA record 12.643 at 1/4 mile

Wayland Invitational IV

Scotty Pollacheck, the rider for the Killacycle, had some free time late Saturday evening and was driving the yellow Tesla that DaveD owns (181). He did 13.000 seconds with a Tesla Roadster 2008 that was not fully charged.

So I offered Scotty Pollacheck my new 2010 Tesla Roadster Sport (553) with about a 75% charge and fully warmed up in Performance mode.

Scotty is a lightweight (135 lbs) professional driver/rider. I let him do two runs in the Tesla Roadster Sport and he promptly set the new records.

12.643 and 12.715. You have to do two runs within 1% of each other. If you have it, then the lower of the two counts as the record. We submitted the record to NEDRA (National Electric Drag Racing Assoc) for the SP/A3 class, which is where the Tesla Roadsters are classified.

Record run at 12.643

Backup run to confirm the record at 12.715 (against a Tango)


After tonight, I know we can do 12.5 seconds if we can arrange a good, lightweight driver when the Roadster Sport is 100% charged in Performance Mode. We just did 12.643 with about a 75% charge in Performance mode.
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Congrats; how cool to know that your car set the record!

It is VERY cool to know that. My daily driver is that car and I just drove it to work today for the first time. Very fun daily drive.

I love the "rev, rev, rev" from the civic, the silence of the Roadster, then the sudden screech from the Tesla's tires as it just rockets away. How better can you put "Kids... pfft!"

I really like the contrast of the two videos. The first one versus a gas car and you hear all of the noise from him. Then the second video versus the Tango EV and hearing a good EV vs EV race.

Those videos represent the past versus the future.
My personal best at 12.82

Here is the video of me driving the Sport (right lane) vs another Tesla. My personal best was 12.82 seconds. I was just doing a regular acceleration without holding the brake and loading the acceleration pedal. I tried that once and got a horrible time, so I stopped trying to be cute. I still managed 12.82 to 12.88 on a regular basis with approx 75% to 80% charge levels. Once I figure out how to properly launch, my times will come down.

Tesla Roadster Sport 553 versus another Tesla Roadster « Peak Oil Garage

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Moderator - Model S & X forums
Third effort to post this (problem at my end).

I am not a big race fan and had no idea how to put a 12.6 sec 1/4 mile into perspective with other stock conventional cars. Fortunately I found a nice list with Google that other might find interesting for comparison.
Stock 1/4 mile and 0-60 times - CarForums.net - Automotive Chat Forum

Found only a select few conventional cars that beat 12.6 in the quarter and several are far from "stock".
2001 Chevrolet Corvette C5-R 3.5 10.3
2002 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 4.1 12.5
2002 Chevrolet Corvette (Lingenfelter 427 twin turbo) 1.97 9.24
2006 Chevrolet Corvette ZO6 3.5 11.5 (MT Oct '05)
1997 Dodge Viper GTS 4.0 12.2
1998 Dodge Viper GTS 4.1 12.2
1998 Dodge Viper RT/10 4.1 12.3
2001 Dodge Viper GTS ACR 4.3 12.6
1996-2002 Viper Hennessey Venom 1000TT 2.3 9.52
2003 Dodge Viper SRT-10 3.9 11.7
1992 Ferrari F40 3.8 11.8
1995 Ferrari 333 SP 3.6 11.3
2003 Ferrari 575M Maranello F1 4.2 12.6-->make note of how many ferrari's DON'T beat 12.6!
2002 Lamborghini Murcielago 3.6 12.0 <--The only Lamb to make the list faster than Tesla!
2002 Mosler MT900 Photon 3.1 11.0
1996 Porsche 911 Turbo 3.7 12.1
1997 Porsche 911 Turbo 3.7 12.3
1997 Porsche 911 Turbo S 3.6 11.9
2001 Porsche 911 Turbo 3.9 12.3
1999 Porsche 911 GT1 3.4 10.9
2001 Porsche 911 GT2 3.6 11.9
2002 Porsche 911 GT2 3.6 11.9
2005 Porsche 911 GT2 3.6 11.7 (MT Aug 2004)
2004 Porsche Turbo X50 3.7 11.86
2004 Volkswagon Golf HPA R32 3.2 11.49

And finally, my current Ride:
2004 Toyota Prius 16.9 !! LOL!!
The Roadster is in very good company and most, if not all, are priced a lot higher.
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It was really great to be there and see this first hand.

Thanks, James, for letting a bunch of others share some of the experience of your new Roadster Sport. :biggrin::biggrin::biggrin:

I am about to post the video of TEG driving my Roadster Sport. If I recall he did a 12.95 second 1/4 mile run on Friday night. That was when the Roadster Sport was around a 50% charge.


Well-Known Member
May 23, 2008
Winchester, UK
Record run at 12.643

Thanks for posting this, it's come in very useful for some more sceptic bashing on Pistonheads.

Since the Tesla shines more in the <80 mph speeds, I've been trying to find a good database with 1/8 mi times to compare against, and am coming up empty. How does 7.968 sec at 87.02 mph from above timeslip compare?

Drag Racing 1/4 Mile times 0-60 Dyno Fast Cars Muscle Cars - DragTimes.com has them.

This would suggest it's nothing special.
Sure it does. It says the Tesla 1/8-mile time is more consistent with a 12.2 quarter-mile time. That supports my point.

Based on what we saw, I think the key for the Tesla Roadster is a 100% charge and being in performance mode for about two hours to get warmed up.
It is difficult to get to that perfect state and still have fun during the evening. You want to go out and do a few runs. But if you do that before you are ready, you are never at that best state for the best time.

We charged in range mode at the EV Juice Bar (Wayland's house) and all left with 100% full batteries. But it was 15 miles to get to the track, so we are already down. We had 40 amp recharging at the track for about two Roadsters at a time, so we were always trying to sneak in there and suck juice to keep our charge percentage high.

Every single run reduces the ideal range by 4 or 5 miles. So if you do 3 runs, then you need about 30 minutes at 40 amps to get back to where you started. It takes planning to get it all right. I seemed to be able to stay around 75% most of the night. But my runs while near 95% were with performance mode only recently turned on. So the Roadster Sport was never really warmed up while it had a high charge.

We produced our record 12.643 seconds with a warmed up Roadster Sport at 75% charge. So clearly there is a better time in there. Maybe 12.4 or 12.5 is possible with this car. We will find out in a few weeks.

The ideal scenario would be to have an HPC with 240 volts and 70 amps at the track. Then of course your charge could be more easily maintained at closer to 100% over the course of the evening.
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Aug 20, 2006
Everyone started out with TC on. Then later we realized that the times were a tad better with TC off, so the 2nd day most runs were done with TC off. Given the starts were off a line covered with rubber from the other cars, and with warm ambient temps, the tires had plenty of traction. Scotty's two foot launch (loading up the emotor with the brake on) managed to break traction a bit at launch but it looked like he 'hooked up' rather quickly. Note: NONE of the Teslas did a tire warm-up burnout in the wet area before getting to the line. I suppose there might have been an extra tenth to find if one were to get the tires even stickier with that trick. The Tango was doing burnouts before they got to the line. Note: cooking the tires like that wears the tires out quickly. All of the Roadsters were on their "daily driver" tires, so I think the owners had some limits as to just how much they were willing to "abuse" their cars at the track.

(I am still in Portland right now... It is 104 degrees today and the same yesterday... Good thing this hot spell came after the event!)

James' Roadster Sport was the only Roadster with the A048 Sport tires. All of the 2008s had the standard Neova high efficiency tires. It is hard to know how much of the ~.3s difference in the quarter mile time is due to tire differences, or 2008 vs 2010 differences or Sport vs non-Sport differences. Theoretically it should be mostly the motor power output improvements, but getting some 2008s with sport tires, and non-Sport 2010s on the track should help answer that question.
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Aug 20, 2006
After James' Sport made the two quickest runs it went back for a 3rd but showed "Battery Error" on the VDS. After a while it cleared up and it returned to normal, but apparently if you really push hard you can overheat things. It seems that the motor, PEM and battery pack are all subject to occasional situations where power has to be reduced temporarily.

When I was looking behind the diffuser on the 2008s and the 2010 Sport, I noticed the 2010 Sport had two fans attached to the motor, compared to one on the 2008s.
When I was looking behind the diffuser on the 2008s and the 2010 Sport, I noticed the 2010 Sport had two fans attached to the motor, compared to one on the 2008s.

One of those fans is attached to the motor, as with the 2008, although the airflow is routed a bit differently.

The other fan is attached the PEM - the 2008 PEM has an internal fan.

These changes are common to all 2010s, not just the Sport.


Dec 19, 2008
I posted this in the other thread, but it probably belongs here. Anyway, in an ICE car the high 7 1/8th mile times @~88mph would net you high 11's @~116 in the quarter. Since the roadster only has one gear, you can tell the high rpm power tapers off because the trap speeds in the 1/4 mile are so low.

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