The Plus model exists only on the Tesla Model S P85+ and is the former top model of Tesla. It was built from 2012 to November 2014. The so-called “Performance Plus Package” could be ordered for 6500 USD with the P85.
In the Plus version the car was only built with a rear engine, but the performance figures are still impressive today. Besides 21-inch tires the car was delivered with 265 tires on the rear axle. This corresponds to 2 cm more tire width at the rear than at the front. 19-inch rims are also possible on the P85+.
The vehicle was advertised by Tesla at that time with the following criteria:
“Performance Plus adds value to an already impressive handling vehicle by stiffening the suspension, tuning dampers and increasing lateral stiffness without sacrificing ride quality.
The Tesla P85+ is thus designed entirely for vehicle handling. Tests and comments on the internet confirm that the difference to the P85 is really very noticeable. Of course, everyone has to decide for themselves what suits them best. Therefore, a test drive is essential.
The following official marketing descriptions of Tesla are from a quote of user p551Wien on the German TFF forum:
Performance Plus Package
We are delighted to offer an additional Performance upgrade for Model S. This option further enhances vehicle suspension and driving dynamics.
This option will be available soon. The availability of a retrofit for vehicles that have already been configured and booked is pending. Details to follow.
Performance Plus, Pricing: to be announced shortly
The Performance Plus suspension tune was developed with the driver in mind. Re-tuned dampers add a very comfortable, yet firm ride that help to transform the Model S into a driver’s car. The dampers work with an updated rear suspension, which boasts an array of new bushings that increase the lateral stiffness and help to spice up the back of the car without compromising comfort. And the steering response comes as a direct effect of the dampers and bushings, reducing the delay between the driver input and the vehicle response. This brings you more in tune to your Tesla, and the road beneath it. To tie your Model S Performance Plus to the road, the 21” wheels are wrapped in larger Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 tires on the rear, which helps the driver unleash what the Model S Performance Plus is truly capable of; precision handling that allows the driver to maintain a desired trajectory without any correction.
Below is a list of upgraded components and how they help to create the Model S Performance Plus:
Stabilizer bars – In a typical “performance car”, large stabilizer bars can corrupt the steering and degrade the ride; but not in Model S Performance Plus. Thanks to our low center of gravity, we have increased the stabilizer bar size front and rear without the negative side effects, allowing greater body control and more predictable handling.
Damping – Tesla’s philosophy on damping is to maintain good handling behavior with good control, while also adhering to a supple ride. The damping characteristics available on the Performance Plus help to bring feedback from the road to the driver to enhance your driving experience, but still manages to encompass road undulations with ease.
Bushings – Tesla focused their attention on increasing lateral stiffness at the rear suspension to improve steering and overall vehicle response. This has been achieved by new and improved compliance characteristics throughout the suspension, thus allowing the springs and dampers to work more efficiently.
Tires – Performance Plus sports new Michelin Pilot Sport 2 tires on a wider rear wheel, which allows its higher performance threshold to take advantage of the improved lateral stiffness of the car.
Conclusion for the Tesla P85+ model:
Whether a used P85+ is worthwhile instead of an S85 or P85 is something everyone has to decide for themselves. However, anyone who values vehicle handling should definitely take a look. The P85+ model was also available with Autopilot. These vehicles are even considered a rarity, as they are quite rare. A disadvantage can be the one-sided wear of the tires, since front and rear cannot be swapped.