It might not look like a supercar, but the Model X Performance is one of the fastest accelerating cars in the world. Select the ‘Ludicrous’ mode, stamp on the accelerator pedal and you will soon feel yourself pinned back against the seat like you are on a roller coaster or taking off in a fighter jet. It’s great fun on a track, but not something you want to be using every day on the road.
What it does give you though (other than bragging rights to impress children) is effortless performance when you need it, such as for overtaking or joining a motorway.
The Long Range version is not quite so fast, but will still be quicker than most other cars on the road. It will be perfectly adequate for most drivers, and is more efficient too.
Before you trade in the Ferrari for a Model X, bear in mind that it is still a big SUV and not a sports car though. It’s a very clever and well-designed vehicle, but it is heavy and can’t change the laws of physics around corners.
Like all electric cars, the Model X is incredibly easy to drive and is just like any automatic car. Select a gear and you are ready to go, with just the faint whirr of the electric motors. It’s smoother and more refined than any petrol or diesel car could ever be and there’s an enormous amount of power in reserve, even if the car is fully loaded with seven people.
The braking might take more getting used to, as like most electric cars the Model X recaptures the energy created when slowing the car down by turning the motor into a generator. You can vary the strength of this ‘braking’, but at the higher settings you will only need to use the brake pedal in emergencies.
Because the heavy batteries are mounted low down in the car, the Tesla feels much more stable than a conventional SUV too, and it sits on air suspension which adjusts itself depending on how many people you have on board. It’s not ever going to feel sporty, but the Model X is a refined and rapid way of getting around.