If you look through the Tesla Model S Plaid configurator, you’ll notice a lot of caveats, just like we did in our First Test. One of the most significant concerns was the Model S Plaid’s claimed top speed of 200 mph: “The indicated Plaid top speed requires proper wheels and tyres, which will be available in Fall 2021.” According to Tesla, the wheels and tyres required for 200 mph are now available on the Plaid, but the software update required to achieve those speeds is not.
The Model S Plaid comes with two sets of wheels. 19-inch “Tempest” wheels are standard, with optional 21-inch “Arachnid” wheels that come standard with Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres (like seen on our recent test Model S Plaid). The latter set of wheels and tires—the 21-inch ones—are required if you want your Plaid to eventually reach 200 mph. This wheel and tyre package, according to Tesla, has recently been validated at the claimed top speed.
Having said that, early Model S Plaid owners with Arachnid wheels won’t be able to hit 200 mph. All Model S Plaids will be limited to 163 mph until a software update is released “in the future.”
There’s no word on the top speed of the Model S Plaid on the Tempest wheel set, but we wouldn’t be surprised if it’s the same 163 mph top speed as the Arachnid Model S Plaids.