New 2022 Tesla Model S: Elon Musk announces Plaid+ version cancelled

Model S Plaid+ with 520-mile range has been cancelled according to Tesla CEO; Plaid and Long Range variants still expected to arrive at end of 2022

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has announced that the Model S Plaid+ variant has been cancelled. Musk made the announcement on Twitter, saying: “Plaid+ is cancelled. No need, as Plaid is just so good.” The Tesla website has now been updated with the news, and the Plaid+ option removed from the Model S configurator, but it's not clear what options will be offered to those who've already ordered a Plaid+ car.

Musk also didn’t state the reason for the Plaid+ variant’s cancellation. Priced at nearly £140,000, the would-be range-topper had a claimed 520-mile range and was said to accelerate from 0-62mph in less than 1.99 seconds.

The Model S Plaid remains available to order, with prices starting at just under £111,000. Tesla claims this version of the Model S produces 1,006bhp, is capable of 0-62mph in exactly 1.99 seconds, can reach 200mph and has a range of 396 miles.

The Long Range variant is also still available to order, priced from £83,980, with a slightly slower 3.1-second 0-60mph time, but a claimed 405-mile range. All versions of both the Model S and the Model X SUV have long lead times for UK customers at the moment, however, with cars ordered now not being delivered until late 2022. It's not clear how long it'll take for this situation to improve.

The latest iteration of the Model S, Tesla’s pure-electric BMW 5 Series rival, features comprehensive changes over the previous generation, including exterior styling tweaks, an all-new interior and – most noticeably – a new space-age steering wheel. Styling changes are subtle on the outside, with new headlights, optimised aerodynamic bodywork and new 'performance-focused' wheels all featuring.

Passive crash structures under that new metal and plastic work are joined by the usual array of active safety and automation systems, including a 360-degree camera system, 12 ultrasonic sensors and a front-facing radar that can see 160 metres ahead. Tesla's famous 'Autopilot' returns, giving the driver extensive help on the motorway, as well as allowing the car to park itself and to be 'summoned' from its parking spot.

It's understood that the updates shown in these images will be offered across the range. The most drastic of these are found inside the car, where the previous Model S' interior has been replaced wholesale with a much more modern design, including that radical cut-down steering wheel that looks closer to an airliner's control column than anything found in a car. The UK Department for Transport has confirmed that the depicted design would be road-legal in this country.

A horizontally mounted 17-inch infotainment screen sits in the middle of the dashboard, while a second rear screen sits on the back of the centre console to be used by rear-seat passengers. An on-board games system offers "gaming on par with today’s newest consoles," while a multi-device wireless charger features to keep multiple phones charged at once. The car also features a 22-speaker, 960W sound system.

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