Running on a wet track, the Unplugged Performance Tesla Model 3 “Bionic Phoenix” managed to pull in a track time of 1.49:00 at the Buttonwillow Raceway Park, setting the pace for another record run that’s definitely in the books in the future for this vehicle
Get ready for an electrifying ride as we take a closer look at the Unplugged Performance Tesla Model 3 “Bionic Phoenix” tearing it up the track at the Buttonwillow Raceway Park. This sleek and powerful vehicle is breaking all boundaries and taking electric cars to new heights. From its stunning design to its impressive performance, this car has everything you need to make an impressive lap time. And thanks to an in-depth look at the Model 3 “Bionic Phoenix” by Unplugged Performance, we had the pleasure of seeing this vehicle in a shakedown that is used to dial in its performance aspects, ensuring that the car is ready for some lap time record-breaking runs in the future.
Reborn from the ashes of Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
The vehicle started off as a Tesla Model 3 race car that Unplugged Performance took to the 2020 Pikes Peak. Driven by Randy Pobst, the car was doing one hell of a run at what is by some, the toughest single hill climb course in the world. The Pikes Peak track measures 19.99 km (12.42 miles) and has over 156 turns, climbing 1,440m (4,720 ft) from the start at Mile 7 on Pikes Peak Highway to the finish at 4,302 m (14,115 ft), on grades averaging 7.2%. In turn, this really is The Race to the Clouds.
However, even though the track is now paved, there are no guide rails for most of this daunting track, and thanks to ever-changing conditions in the course of this track, Randy hit a wet and cold patch, bouncing his car and making him lose grip, ultimately ending his run in some rocks beside the road. Tough break for Randy, but the team did manage to patch up the car and finish the race. However, this was not the end of this Model 3 by any chance.
The resurrection of the Tesla Model 3 as the “Bionic Phoenix”
After the 2020 Pikes Peak International Hillclimb crash, Unplugged Performance decided to rebuild their Model 3 race car into a pure race machine, designed and engineered to showcase what an all-electric track beast can do. The result was the “Bionic Phoenix,” an all-carbon fiber body with a large wing that looks as if it came from another world.
When this vehicle was tested at TeslaCorsa 28, it posted a remarkable lap time of 1.49:00 even while running on a wet track – one of the fastest ever recorded at this track. As a comparison point, the current fastest lap time is 01.44:6 when running on the dry road – making this run even more extraordinary.
It will be interesting to see what kind of lap times can the Unplugged Performance Tesla Model 3 “Bionic Phoenix” post at both Buttonwillow, but also on other tracks that the race team from Unplugged Performance frequents for shakedowns like these. And who knows, maybe the race team puts this Model 3 back where it belongs later this year, at the 2023 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. In the meantime, take a look at the Model 3 “Bionic Phoenix” tearing it up at Buttonwillow Raceway Park in the media gallery below.