F1 Car vs Tesla Cybertruck Drag Race, Who Wins?

Alex Gassman

by Alex Gassman

F1 car vs cybertruck drag race

The production version of the Tesla Cybertruck has just been unveiled by Elon Musk and the performance figures, like most of the other Tesla EVs, are staggering. But how does the new car compare to a Formula 1 car in a Drag Race? Let’s find out.

Cybertruck or Cyberbeast

The Tesla Cybertruck has been hotly anticipated since it was first shown to the world in 2019. Its slab-sided, futuristic stainless steel body captured the automotive world’s attention. It redefined the age-old pickup truck concept and supposedly gaining 2-million pre-orders in the process.

Back in 2019 Musk promised a few variations of the Cybertruck, each with different levels of spice. Now, as of the truck’s unveiling at a Tesla gigafactory in Austin yesterday, we know a little more about the different versions.

The base model will be the single-motor Cybertruck. Then there’ll be the mid range dual-motor version with 600bhp. And the spiciest of them all will be the tri-motor 845bhp Cyberbeast.

F1 car straight-line performance

Modern Formula 1 cars have close to 1000bhp, weigh about 1760lbs (800kg) and are RWD only. Whilst Formula 1 cars are known as being the best in the world for cornering performance thanks to their incredible downforce, they’re less well know for their speed off the line.

Putting all that power to the ground isn’t easy. F1 cars don’t have a clutch pedal, instead there’s a couple of clutch levers on the back of the wheel the driver has to pull at just the right time. It’s a pretty convoluted procedure to just get the thing off the line in the first place.

So whilst the high power and light weight suggests they should be quick off the line, in the real-world the Cybertruck might just have a chance. Let’s look at the numbers.

0-60 times

Elon Musk has claimed a 0-60mph time of 2.6 seconds for the tri-motor 845bhp Cyberbeast version of the Cybertruck. For a vehicle that weighs 6,800lbs (3085kg), that’s an incredible time. It shows just what the Tesla engineers can do with instant-torque electric motors and a super smart all-wheel-drive system.

There’s no official 0-60 time for Formula 1 cars and the only time they ever do a full-bore launch is at the start of a Grand Prix.

In the video below the F1 car gets a great launch and hits 100kph (62mph) in 2.70 seconds. That’s with warm slick tyres and a clean track surface.

The drag race

So lets put our two contenders on the hypothetical drag strip.

The lights go green and both the Cyberbeast and F1 car get a great launch. The truck’s instant torque from its three electric motors and AWD system means it will deliver all of its 845bhp straight to the tarmac without any wheelspin, and will slingshot off the line.

The F1 car will struggle for traction, especially if its rear slicks aren’t at optimal temperature. That means the Cyberbeast will pip the F1 car to 60mph, but by less than one tenth of a second.

So what happens next? Once the F1 car gets traction and can unleash all of its horsepower, then its straight line performance really ramps up. 100-200kph (62mph – 120mph) in a Formula 1 car takes 2 seconds. That’s unmatched by almost any road car. And it’s also unmatched by the Cybertruck.

So this is where the F1 car claws back the ground it lost at the start of the race. Based on Carwow’s video above of an F1 car racing a couple of other EVs, it would take 9.5 seconds for the Formula 1 car to complete the quarter mile.

The Cyberbeast? Tesla claim that will do the ¼ mile in under 11 seconds. Previous stats suggested it would be 10.8 seconds, so just over a second slower than an F1 car.

The result

Based on the stats of the Cyberbeast version of the new Tesla truck, as its stands it couldn’t quite hold its own in a drag race against a Formula 1 car. 

But I’m sure Elon will get bored and there’ll be an extra spicy Plaid version of the truck a few years down the line, and who knows what that will be capable of. He’s already beaten a 911 in a drag race with the truck, towing another 911.

Alex Gassman

I‘m Alex. I write F1 and motorsport travel guides based on my experience as racing driver and full-time motorsport nerd. I’ve traveled the world watching F1 and other racing series.

I started oversteer48 with the aim of helping other motorsport fans who are planning on watching some racing themselves.

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