Australian Airline Qantas has just released a video featuring one of their new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners and a Tesla Model X SUV. The electric model manages to tow the towering plane onto the tarmac at Melbourne Airport.
According to Qantas, this is the first such feat by an electric passenger vehicle.
This is the P100D version of the Tesla Model X that has been designated to accomplish the task, which is the most powerful in the range. It produces 503 horsepower and 487 lb-ft of torque.
By the way, its maximum towing capacity is officially 2,250 kg (4960 lb), just a few pounds less than the empty weight of the Boeing Dreamliner, which is 128,850 kg (284,000 lb). Goodbye the guarantee on this Tesla X …
Obviously, the principle of towing such an object is similar to the one that governs a train: it is a question of inertia. Once an object such as the Dreamliner is in motion, towing it is relatively easy, as long as the tires are well inflated and the tarmac is flat and smooth – a matter of minimizing friction.
We have seen in the past a Porsche Cayenne S Diesel successfully towing an Airbus A380. This Porsche had less torque available than the Model X.