Model 3 At the Track

Video Here:

I took the Model 3 to the track yesterday for some real laps, not follow-the-leader laps, but real hard runs as I would with the GT4 or any other car.   The first run out I managed to get 5 laps out of the car before I received a high brake temp warning and brought the car in.  I had the car completely stock, including stock tire pressures.  Suffice it to say that the Model 3 in stock form isn’t really design to be a track car, but as some aftermarket tuning companies have shown, it could be with the right tweaks.   The video is from the 2nd run of the day and during that run I only managed 3 laps before getting the brake temp warning because it takes a long time for the brakes to cool after they’ve become heat soaked.   The rotors are too small and they aren’t vented rotors so besides the tires the brakes are certainly the area that needs improvement if you are going to do any serious track driving.  Now I will say that on my first run out and with fresh brakes I was able to keep up with a new corvettes and new mustangs, in fact I was turning faster lap times that the orange mustang that passes me in the video of the 2nd run because I just couldn’t get the car to turn as fast of lap times, likely due to dwindling battery power and the heat soaked brakes causing me to vary my line in order to stay on track at any respectable speed.

I would certainly change the tires too as the stock high mileage tires are too hard and not grippy enough for serious track work, you can hear them protest throughout the video as I tried to keep them on edge without over driving them.  After all I did have to return the car to daily driving use!  I suspect my best lap time on my first run was around 2:05, for comparison my GT4 is sub 2 minutes and my best lap in it is a 1:51, that being said if I modified the Model 3 and dropped 12 seconds a lap like that one company did, it would certainly put the Model 3 in GT4 territory and in fact since I don’t have to shift in the Model 3 I would probably be more consistent lap after lap.   Do I think you need the Performance version of the Model 3? Well certainly the additional speed wouldn’t hurt, but until I try out the brakes in the performance package I will withhold judgement because the brakes are currently the weakest point on the car for track driving.   Which begs the question why someone would be the Performance version of the Model 3 and not get the performance package that includes the better brakes, you’d just be asking for trouble if you had more speed but still the brakes of the standard car.

If you have any questions just let me know, but hopefully the video answers most of them.

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