While artificial agents (AA) such as Artificial Intelligence are being extensively developed, a popular belief that AA will someday surpass human intelligence is growing. The present research examined whether this common belief translates into negative psychological and behavioral consequences when individuals assess that an AA performs better than them on cognitive and intellectual tasks. In two studies, participants were led to believe that an AA performed better or less well than them on a cognitive inhibition task (Study 1) and on an intelligence task (Study 2). Results indicated that being outperformed by an AA increased subsequent participants’ performance as long as they did not experience psychological discomfort towards the AA and self-threat. Psychological implications in terms of motivation and potential threat as well as the prerequisite for the future interactions of humans with AAs are further discussed.