Tesla The owners of the 3 model who have opted for the Performance variant now have a reason to go on the track. Or, if the chronology is a guide, they will skip the track and try the Track Mode software function just released in a parking lot or on a winding road.
Track Mode – to be clear – is designed for, and should only be used on autocross circuits and closed circuits. Here because.
The software connects to double electric motors to squeeze even more performance from the vehicle. But in a new way. Until now, Tesla has used the power produced by its twin engines and its torque (the rotational force of an engine or, in this case, the engine) to create a super-fast accelerating vehicle. He is now using the same power and torque as the engine to turn the Model 3 into a dynamo on a curve (and drifting).
As Tesla explains in a blog post (and shows in the video below), the company has replaced the stability control system with its own Vehicle Dynamics Controller, "software developed specifically for Tesla vehicles that serves as both a system stability control that also as an improvement in track performance. "
This Vehicle Dynamics Controller allows greater rotation if necessary. If the rotation is insufficient, the system commands a pair with rear bias. When the rotation is excessive, it commands a couple with frontal polarization. Track mode also improves steering by applying brake and engine torque at the same time to produce an increase in cornering traction force.
All this means that the system is designed to send all the power to the rear wheels while the driver is setting aside, which pushes the tail off. If the rotation becomes excessive, the power is sent to the front wheels, pulling the vehicle up and out of the curve.
When enabled, the Track mode also increases regenerative braking. In this way the braking system breaks (ahem) and sends more energy to the battery. It also gives drivers more control with just one pedal (the accelerator). It means that the driver can simply lift one foot from the accelerator to get the braking they are looking for as they approach a corner.
Track Mode also anticipates the tension on the powertrain, then lowers the battery and drive unit temperatures in preparation for the track and continues to cool them between driving sessions.
What is even more interesting is the way in which Tesla perfected the function. Motor Trend's Randy Probst ended up working with Tesla engineers during a track session at the Willows Springs Street circuit to get the Track mode behaving as it should. The result was a lap time of 1:21:49, beating the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio, recently tested and matched with the 2016 Porsche Cayman GT4.