Elon Musk takes on 'Top Gear' in Tesla vs Porsche 'fake figures' controversy

Katie Archer
Contributor
(Getty)

Tesla boss Elon Musk has weighed in on the row over Top Gear’s fudged figures in a speed test against a Porsche - while the show has offered a head-scratching explanation of why they did it.

Eagle-eyed viewers of a video published on the BBC driving show’s website of a face-off between a Tesla Model S Performance and a Porsche Taycan Turbo S thought something about the test’s figures didn’t quite add up.

Read more: Jeremy Clarkson hits back at makeover request

A video of a drag race between the two cars threw up suspicions about what the real results had been, with car site DragTimes wondering whether the figures had been faked.

Musk tweeted his response that he agreed with DragTimes, later clarifying to someone who tweeted to ask about his response: “Sorry, Drag Times is correct, Top Gear is wrong.”

He later tweeted: "Putting Model S in range mode is the opposite of launch mode, as it minimizes performance in favor of range."

Meanwhile, Top Gear editors posted an update on their website giving an explanation of the test figures.

It read: “There have been some questions about the performance figures we posted in our recent Porsche Taycan vs Tesla Model S video. Time for some clarification.

“First things first, we ran the drag race five times and the Porsche won every time by a small but increasing margin with each subsequent race.”

Read more: Freddie Flintoff ‘absolutely fine’ after high-speed crash

There followed a breakdown of the times and then: “These were numbers we recorded in a Model S on a previous occasion. We ran them because these are the best figures we’ve achieved in a Model S to date so we know that’s what the car is capable of.

“And just to be clear, the Tesla was in Ludicrous+ mode, the battery was pre-conditioned and both cars had around 85 per cent charge before the first run.”