Electricity vs. gasoline.
Electric cars have a history of trouncing any gas-powered competitor. The instant torque from an electric powertrain is hard to match and harder to beat. But there are cars that at least give EVs a run for their money. DragTimes pitted two such adversaries in its latest video – the Tesla Model S and the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye. It’s far from an apples-to-apples comparison, but who doesn’t love a good drag race?
The Tesla Model S in the video packs the Dual Motor setup, meaning it has all-wheel-drive – a clear advantage over the rear-wheel-drive Dodge. The Tesla makes 588 horsepower (438 kilowatts) and 920 pound-feet (1,247 Newton-meters) of torque at the wheels. It’s also a bit chunky at 4,900 pounds (2,222 kilograms). The Challenger makes the stock 797 hp (594 kW) and 707 lb-ft (959 Nm) of torque from its supercharged 6.2-liter V8, though it does have an aftermarket exhaust and Nitto drag radials. It tips the scales at 4,500 lbs. (2,041 kg.).
The first race had the Tesla getting an exceptional launch off the line, getting an early and sizeable lead over the Challenger, which flubbed the start. Once the Dodge got going, it kept the Tesla from pulling away further, but it wasn’t powerful enough to pass the EV. The third race was similar, with the Dodge failing to get a good start at all, conceding early to the Tesla.
The second race, however, was a bit stranger. The Dodge got a much better start off the line even though the Tesla got a small lead early. Slowly, the Dodge reeled in the Tesla, both crossing the finish line at nearly the same time. The win light illuminated for the Tesla, but the slip showed the Dodge with the quicker ET: 10.744 seconds at 124.76 miles per hour (200.78 kilometers per hour) for the Tesla versus 10.677 seconds at 129.08 mph (207.73 kph) for the Dodge.
Electric vehicles have clear advantages, though gas-powered competitors aren’t obsolete just yet. If the Challenger could have found the traction it needed to launch off the line, then it could have better challenged the Tesla. A single win, out of three races, isn’t enough to put the EV genie back in its bottle.