Australia's love affair with high-performance cars is legendary.
Even well-heeled, environmentally-conscious Australians would seem to be fond of a bit of hoonery too. No surprise then that the mega-quick P58D variant of the all-electric Tesla Model S is currently the US automaker's most popular product in Australia.
"We’ve got three major things that attract people to the brand: the performance, the tech and enviro-cred," Tesla Motors spokesperson Heath Walker said to TMR at the local launch of the dual-motor Model S range.
"But there’s always one primary reason, and the primary in this market is performance."
"P85D is by far and away the strongest share out of any of the models. Definitely, by a big gap.
"Then people tend to go middle-of-the-ground after that, so either 85 or 85D depending on their requirement for range."
While Walker wouldn't be drawn on specifics for model split percentages or indeed outright local sales numbers, the demand for the P85D remains strong.
Anecdotal evidence suggests upwards of 200 Tesla Model S cars have been delivered thus far.
However new variants introduced to the line-up may loosen the P85D's grip on sales.
A more affordable single-motor 70kWh option was added to the bottom of the range last month, complementing the existing dual-motor Model S 70D that's been available to order since April
At $100,100 before on-roads, the single-motor Model S 70 becomes the cheapest way to park a Tesla in your garage.
At the opposite end of the spectrum is the P90D, which was announced last month by Tesla CEO Elon Musk and can come with the aptly-named "ludicrous mode" - a drive mode capable of launching the Model S to 100km/h in three seconds flat.
Essentially a modified P85D, the P90D upgrade costs an extra $4100 on top of the P85D's $148,000 retail price.
Adding Ludicrous Mode requires further upgrades to battery hardware at a cost of $13,500, but it can also be applied to the P85D if you don't require the extra range offered by the P90D upgrade.
There's good news for current owners of P85D models too: both the 90kWh battery and Ludicrous Mode are retrofittable.
However, if you're ordering your car today you'll need to be prepared for a wait: Tesla only maintains a small demo fleet in Australia, and the gap between placing an order and the car's arrival on our shores is roughly four months.
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