Our tech elite grew up with Star Trek, which is why a lot of our tech looks like props from that old TV show: the flip phone is like Capt. Kirk’s communicator, the laser pointer is a phaser, the tricorder is a reality.
Next year, when Tesla Motors releases the dual-motor, four-wheel-drive, semiautonomous version of its Model S, drivers will boldly go where no (electric) car has gone before: into Warp drive.
This video shows a test ride in which the zero-to-60 time comes to 3.6 seconds, 0.4 seconds longer than Tesla is promising for the car next year. Note how it’s framed by lighting reminiscent of the special effects that early Star Trek movies used to suggest faster-than-light travel:
Philip E. Ross is a senior editor at IEEE Spectrum. His interests include transportation, energy storage, AI, and the economic aspects of technology. He has a master's degree in international affairs from Columbia University and another, in journalism, from the University of Michigan.