Tesla has quietly increased the top speed of the Performance Model 3 in Australia to 261km/hr from 233 km/hr, and added a small amount onto its purchase price.
Along with the increase in top speed, the Performance Model 3 now sells at a starting price of $A93,900 instead of the previous $A92,900.
However, the increase in top speed is not due to more advanced hardware, but due to a software upgrade, says Tesla.
As CEO and co-founder Elon Musk discussed in the company’s Q3 earnings call in October, “we’re also expecting there’s going to be an over-the-air improvement that will improve the power of the Model S, X, and 3. That’s, by the way coming in a few weeks. Should be in the order of 5% power improvement due to improved firmware.”
The improvement in power has also now amounted to an improvement in top speed.
While it is the most expensive variant of the Tesla Model 3 that has been topping auto markets becoming the best seller in its segment or class in the US and Europe, the Performance has become the variant of choice according to an informal survey conducted by Australia Tesla Owners.
The latest upgrade has also improved the driving range of Tesla vehicles by around 6%, although the update is not shown on Tesla’s Australian website due to local regulations which require EVs to use the outdated an inaccurate NEDC rating.
Neither a price increase, nor an increase in top speed, has been applied to the Standard Range Plus or Long Range models.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.