Published on July 7th, 2014 | by Christopher DeMorro

Video: Electric Miata Dragster VS. Tesla Model S

With up to 416 horsepower and 443 ft-lbs of torque available instantly, the Tesla Model S can quietly zip past just about anything else on the road. But the dragstrip is another story, and when the 4,700 pound Telsa lines up against a purpose-built electric Miata dragster, all bets are off.

That is, unless you’ve seen this particular Miata race before. Owned and raced by John Metric, “Assault and Battery” is an electric Miata unlike any other, able to blast down the quarter-mile dragstrip in the low 9-second range. Even the mighty Tesla Model S P85+ is no match for this Miata, which shoots down the strip like a slot car to a best run of 9.27 seconds at 142 MPH. The Tesla meanders over the finish line more than three seconds later at a 12.72 at 102 MPH, which is still faster than 90% of cars on the road.

So what’s the Miata’s secret? Forklift motors, powered by a 333-volt lithium-ion battery pack. Combined with the already-light chassis of the Miata, Assault and Battery is able to make short work of the drag strip and the Tesla.

Forklift motors. Really!

 



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About the Author

A writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs, can be found wrenching or writing- or esle, he's running, because he's one of those crazy people who gets enjoyment from running insane distances.



  • Doc Joe

    In all fairness to Tesla, it did a great job for a showroom stock car VS a heavily modified Miata. But that Miata is fast…

    • Steve Hanley

      That’s a fair comment, Doc. The Miata would probably be lousy at touring with a family of 4 inside, too!

      But you’re right. It is pretty darn quick in the quarter mile.

  • Albertico

    Wonder how much that EV converted Miata weighs and the weight of the batteries it has. From the video it seems pretty bare bones and I’d say it only has enough battery juice for a few drag races to keep the weight low

    Massive torque, combined with a very low weight and powerful electric motor is a thing of wonder.

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