It's perfectly okay to call shenanigans on this race. In fact, we expect the Tesla faithful to call shenanigans. After all, this best-of-three drag race sees a stock Model S Plaid racing a decidedly not stock Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck. Whenever you see two turbochargers sticking outside the engine bay on purpose, you know it's a serious build.
That said, come on Tesla fans. A stock Model S Plaid still plants over 1,000 horsepower (746 kilowatts) to the ground, and it claws at the pavement with all four tires. On the street there's pretty much nothing that can touch it through a quarter mile, and as we've seen with the latest This vs. That series on Hoonigan's YouTube channel, even heavily modified cars struggle against the Plaid. Wherever you stand with regards to Tesla or the electric-versus-internal combustion debate, there's no denying the Plaid's insane performance threshold.
Gallery: 2021 Tesla Model S
So how do you fight insanity? It starts with a 427 cubic-inch Chevrolet LSX V8. Add two massive turbochargers, a host of other performance upgrades, and you arrive at – wait for it – 1,500 hp (1,119 kW). That's not the insane part, nor is the Chevy Silverado pickup truck in which this engine rests. Big and heavy doesn't mix well with speed, and we all know how hard it is for trucks to get traction with such little weight on the back wheels. It's one thing to find grip on a prepped drag strip, but at an unprepared runway? The truck doesn't stand a chance, despite what the headline says.
Here's the insane part. This Chevy Silverado is four-wheel drive. No, not all-wheel drive in a performance application. It's a freaking 4x4 with a stock Silverado transfer case sending power to the front wheels. The owner of this bonkers pickup (known only as Beto in the video) does burnouts in 2WD to heat up the rears, locks it into 4WD, and unleashes the dogs of war.
save over $3,400 on average off MSRP* on a new Chevrolet Silverado 1500
The first of three races says it all. The Model S Plaid with AWD is fast, but the big ol' Chebby locked into 4WD is faster. Both vehicles leave the starting line at the same time but the Silverado stretches the gap to five cars at the finish line. A miscommunication on the second race also sees a Silverado victory, so overall, this battle is won by team truck. However, a bonus round gives the Model S a 30 mph roll to start with, and that ends up being an extremely close race. Who wins? We'll leave that to the video.
Props to both drivers and Hoonigan for giving us some great EV-versus-ICE entertainment.