Elon Musk has tweeted that his electric car company, Tesla, is shelving development of its Model S Plaid Plus, the most high-end offering in its flagship Model S line.
The Model S Plaid Plus—which had yet to debut—was publicized during Tesla’s Battery Day event last summer. It was marketed as a speed demon with a 1,100-horsepower engine, a 500-mile range, a top speed of 200 miles per hour, and the ability to accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in less than two seconds.
But according to Musk, such a vehicle is simply not necessary “as Plaid is just so good.”
In terms of specs, there seems to be truth to that: The humble Model S Plaid—which is still in the works—is not far off with 1,020 horsepower, a 390-mile range, a top speed of 200 miles per hour, and the ability to accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in under two seconds. It’s also $30,000 cheaper than the Plaid Plus’s former price tag of $150,000.
But despite Musk’s fanfaronade, the signs aren’t looking great for Tesla. The company was hit by the massive computer chip shortage earlier this year, which was a “huge problem” as Musk told investors. Two weeks ago, it upped the prices for some vehicles in its Model 3 and Model Y lines, with Musk citing “major supply chain price pressure industrywide . . . raw materials especially.” Notably, costs for lithium and cobalt, both key ingredients for electric car batteries, have skyrocketed recently.
Tesla has also been lagging when it comes to rolling out new cars, with delays in the Model S and Model X redesigns. And now it’s axing its most premium redesign entirely. As Barron’s points out, it’s unclear how many Plaid Plus cars had been preordered, or whether those buyers will downshift to the regular Plaid offering.
Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Its stock dipped 1.5% midday Monday following the news.
Plaid is set to debut this week on June 10, which was pushed back a week from June 3 to allow for further tweaks. Its moniker is an homage to the 1987 film Spaceballs, a Star Wars parody directed by Mel Brooks. In Star Wars, spaceships traveling through hyperspace faster than the speed of light are treated to a visual of stars turning to long streaks in the sky. However in Spaceballs, those stars instead become plaid.