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Tesla Model S Plaid Convertible Is the Closest You’ll Ever Get to Owning a Roadster

There's wind in your hair, and then there's hurricane-force wind.
Tesla Model S Plaid convertible
Newport Convertible Engineering

It’s only just struck me that the options for electric convertibles are…slim. Your choices are either an old Tesla Roadster or a GMC Hummer EV, both of which cost well over $100,000 and can be hard to find. A Tesla Model S on the other hand is pretty ubiquitous by now, and paying to have one turned into a convertible is still probably cheaper than the alternatives.

Model S convertibles are now offered by Newport Convertible Engineering, which is known for its custom drop-tops and falcon-hunting cars. It made a Model 3 convertible years ago, which didn’t look great, but there weren’t exactly many other options. Now, it’ll do them for Tesla‘s higher-end sedan, including the 1,000-horsepower Plaid as seen in the case of the red car here. (Flashing light warning—the video seared my eyes.)

NCE told The Drive that conversion involves reinforcements along the rocker panels and interior, and that the soft top “is designed to match the maximum speed capabilities of the Tesla.” The conversion also evidently leaves the B-pillars and a span of roof connecting them intact, improving safety in case of a rollover. The back seat looks harder to get into, though, because of an extension on the C-pillar to support the roof frame.

As for cost, NCE tells us that conversion runs $50,000 and takes four months to complete. With the Model S appearing to bottom out at around $40,000 on the used market, you’re looking at more than $90,000 altogether. That’s still well shy of what you’ll pay for any other EV you can pop the top off of, though.

Plus, if you do it to a Plaid, you’ll be closer to a new Roadster than Tesla may ever get. Okay, I kid, but you’d better not expect it to hover.

Tesla Model S convertible
Tesla Model S convertible. Newport Convertible Engineering

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