This footage we took Thursday night, at Tesla’s raucous premiere event for the Model X—an all-electric luxury crossover vehicle with room for seven, trick ‘falcon’ (gullwing-like) doors, and a spacious front trunk—shows this upcoming model in action, on a closed circuit within the Tesla and SpaceX compound, where a Tesla driver was taking groups of these VIPs for short rides in the Model X prototype.
While the course is very small, our clip shows the Model X responding well when taking a tight corner then negotiating the cones of a small slalom course. The speeds were definitely cautious, but it was just enough to show the slightest bit of body motion that looks comparable to what we’d see from a BMW X5 or Audi Q7.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk wowed the audience with claims that the Model X will have a 0-60 mph time of just 4.4 seconds—faster than a Porsche 911—plus a turning radius comparable to that of a Mini Cooper. And its dual-motor all-wheel drive system should offer all-weather traction without the usual loss in efficiency that comes with mechanical linkages.
From the front trunk ('frunk') that stuck closed during the presentation, to a taillight out on this vehicle, and a somewhat cobbled interior, the Model X is clearly still in prototype form.
But take a close look. This—and other footage from the Model X opening night—is probably all you’re going to see of this exciting upcoming model for months.