After a lot of anticipation and trying to do as much development remotely as possible, our Model Y Performance has finally arrived! It was a painful experience receiving an end of the quarter build, and we hate to see Tesla rushing to produce cars. If we didn’t have our own timeline and desire to produce parts the truth is we would have likely denied this car due to some pretty bad build problems. This is coming from someone who usually couldn’t care less about panel gaps or minor build quality issues!
The good news is that other than these cosmetic flaws the car is pretty incredible. It only feels slightly heavier than a Model 3 Performance. We’re really looking forward to how this car does at the racetrack once we equip of our parts. One of the main advantages of the Model Y is the fact that it weighs only 4400lbs – which is light for any SUV, not just an electric one. In fact, the main “performance” competition for this platform would include the Jeep Trackhawk (4809lbs), Lamborghini Uras (4850lbs), BMW X3 M (4620lbs). It seems only the Porsche Macan Turbo is lighter, at 4279lbs.
So while the Model 3 has a decent weight disadvantage to many other cars in its class, the Y is actually a leader here despite being fully electric! We threw the Y on the dyno and it didn’t disappoint – putting down over 500 horsepower at the wheels at 95% state of charge. This is higher than what we’ve seen from the Model 3 Performance, however it seems that Tesla has released another power upgrade since the last time we’ve dyno’d a 3.
At this point, we’re currently validating our final pre-production coilovers on the Y, complete with shock pots and full vehicle instrumentation using Motec data analysis and custom software we’ve developed that integrate both the OEM CAN signals and our measured sensors to give us a full picture on how to tune the dampers. Despite the Y sharing the architecture with the 3, the use case of the vehicle is a lot different and it is quite difficult to get the Y very low without losing a lot of ride quality, so it’s not as much of a walk in the park as it might seem.
We’d be very interested to hear from you if you’re looking at coilovers for your Model Y – we want to know just how low you want to be able to go!
There are some other exciting plans in the works with the Y, and we’re excited to share them all with you once we get everything together in the coming weeks. It sure seems like the Y is going to be the perfect performance SUV that can haul, tow, be incredibly comfortable and yet still hit the track from time to time to keep some BMWs and Porsche’s honest!
For a while, we’ve been fighting with efficiency loss on our Model 3, and one observation I made was that the rear rotors were quite hot after a drive even when only using regen. So we replaced the calipers and brake pads, and even changed a wheel bearing to attempt to identify and fix the issue. There were a few things wrong – the OEM caliper spring clips had broken a while ago during a pad change, we were using some prototype pads that were far too large and so they didn’t slide freely, and the caliper itself was a little bit sticky. With those changes, we found a huge amount of efficiency as you’ll see in the video below. The video also notes some other ways you can check up on your car to make sure as many electrons are going towards powering motion as possible, and not to heat! Oh and Jesse does great in front of the camera doesn’t he?
Hopefully that helps some of you out, especially those that have overheated brakes on the track, or are using brake pads that maybe don’t fit quite as they should and are resulting in significant brake drag!
We’re excited to bring you more Model 3 and Model Y parts and updates, but as you can imagine we are going to take it slow and ensure we do the proper validation and development on our parts to ensure there aren’t any unexpected issues with parts that physically fit but may not be suitable in terms of durability or performance.
Our June SpaceX sale was such a success that we sold out of almost everything we sell here – we’re stocking back up and will be in good shape again in the next two weeks, sorry about that. Our machine shop is going full bore, and KW is in the middle of a big upgrade to their facility. The good news is our machine shop has a brand new 5-axis CNC coming in the next few weeks, so that will both increase our production speed and surface finish quality, and allow us to make parts with even more design freedom. Yes!
Stay safe out there, and don’t let your guard down! There is more troubling news being released all the time about the potential long term effects of this stupid virus, so avoid getting it – a little bit of pain and inconvenience now is better than a lot of collective pain later!