Evasive Motorsports Tesla Model 3 is fastest EV at Pikes Peak

(June 29, 2022) A wet course and dense fog during the 4,724-foot climb to the finish line made the 100th running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb especially challenging for drivers on Sunday, June 26. Yet Japanese champion Daijiro Yoshihara was able to master the 156 turns on his way to the peak. He set a time of 11:06.205 in the Turn 14 Distribution / Yokohama Tire / ENEOS / Evasive Motorsports Tesla Model 3 Pikes Peak, which placed him ninth overall.

As the fastest EV, he was second in the Exhibition Class because PPIHC currently lacks dedicated classes for electric vehicles. Winner of the class was a production 2022 Porsche 911 Turbo S Lightweight.

This year’s event was only the second outing for the Tesla Model 3 prepared by Evasive Motorsports in Cerritos, CA. Despite its promising form in practice and qualifying, a mechanical issue prematurely curtailed its 2021 attempt. During the interim, the team worked hard to understand the car and fine-tune both its aerodynamic and cooling efficiency (see Tech Spec below), making few additions to the race-prepped chassis other than switching to Yokohama racing tires for 2022.

“It’s been an incredible week with no issues,” Dai Yoshihara said. “Practice and qualifying went great, which almost seemed too good to be true. And then coming into today [Sunday] the weather became a big factor with the rain and fog. However, we felt it could give us a real chance because our weakness is the power of the car but the Yokohama wet tires work really well. Effectively, the rain erased the advantage of the other cars and I think we got a really good result because of it, which I’m obviously delighted about.”

One of the biggest challenges for the Evasive Motorsports team had been battery cooling, which would enable the Tesla to run at full power for longer. With the improvements the team had made in terms of airflow into and around the car, and the arrival of colder, wet conditions, the Turn 14 Distribution / Yokohama Tire / ENEOS / Evasive Motorsports Tesla Model 3 Pikes Peak achieved what many people thought impossible a few years ago.