Unplugged Performance and Dark Helmet shatter Buttonwillow Raceway’s EV lap record [Video]

Unplugged Performance took their modified Tesla Model S Plaid known as Dark Helmet to Buttonwillow Raceway this past weekend, and shattered the EV lap record.

Not only did they beat their own EV lap record, the record time put the electric sedan ahead of purpose-built performance cars like a McLaren Senna, Ferrari 488, and the Porsche GT3RS and GT2RS.

The Unplugged team headed to Buttonwillow for the Global Time Attack Finals with Dark Helmet in the same configuration that was used during this year’s Pikes Peak run. The Model S Plaid was modified using all but two of their products that anyone can buy off their shelves, the only exceptions to that being the lower diffusers and rear wing.

Even with a stripped out interior Dark Helmet still weighed in at a hefty 4,898lbs, but that didn’t slow it down.

With Craig Coker behind the wheel the modified Plaid completed a lap around the 3.1 mile (4.98km) track in 1:43.2, easily breaking their previous EV lap record of 1:47.8.

Putting that time into perspective, the Model S Plaid is now the fourth fastest car of any type around Buttonwillow, beating out the likes of a McLaren 600LT and 720S, and even modified Porsche GT3 and Corvette Grand Sport.

Only the FXMD FX 750, a modified Acura NSX (1:37.55), a modified Nissan GT-R (1:39.11), and a McLaren Senna (1:41.69) have been able to achieve faster times around Buttonwillow.

Making this time even more impressive is that the Model S Plaid weighs as much as 1,500lbs more than some of these cars.

Here is the full list of modifications to Dark Helmet, followed by a video of the record setting run.

  • Stock Power, Stock Tesla Track Mode Software, 4,898lbs with driver
  • UP Full Suspension: UP x Ohlins TTX 4 Way Coilovers, UP billet adjustable front upper control arms, all 5 UP rear billet arms, UP adjustable rear sway bar
  • UP Full carbon ceramic front & rear brake package with UP race competition pads & UP brake lines
  • UP S-APEX carbon widebody
  • UP Long Tail Trunk Spoiler
  • UP-03 Race Wheels PPIHC 2022 Spec 19×13 with 330/710-19 Yokohama A005 Slicks
  • UP Lexan Rear Windshield and Side Windows
  • UP Racing Lower Diffusers and BFW
  • UP Pikes Peak Roll Cage



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