“This is the base model,” Musk says.
In a surprise reveal, Tesla CEO Elon Musk pull the wraps off of the second-generation Roadster, bring back a nameplate that launched the company back in 2008, and has been missing from its lineup since 2012. But where the original Roadster was a tweaked Lotus Elise, this thing is all-new from the ground-up, and boy do we know it.
Flanked by two Tesla Semis at the launch, the new Roadster looked resplendent in its metallic red paint, and was impressive even before the numbers were revealed. The car can hit 100km/h from rest in just 2-seconds, capable of completing the “quarter mile” (you know it’s an American company) in 8.9-seconds, which is the first time a production car has cracked the 9-second mark on the dragstrip. Power will come from a 200kWh battery pack that is capable of over 1,000km on a single charge, which is impressive within itself.
Compared to the outgoing model, the new Tesla Roadster offers greater practicality and flexibility, as it’ll hit the market as a 2+2 sports car, though we reckon those rear seats will be for occasional use only. When it hits the roads in 2020, Musk says that it “will be the fastest production car ever made, period.”
As is typical of Tesla, the Roadster is open for reservations with a mammoth US$50,000 (or $66,040) deposit, though a full US$250,000 ($330,025) will be commanded should you want to secure one of 1,000 ‘Founders Series’ models. What’s surprising for us is that the Semi and the Roadster are being unveiled at a time when Tesla is under fire for reneging on its promises, as the company doesn’t yet appear to be out of production “hell” as far as the Model 3 is concerned, and continued quality control bugs plague the Model X range as well.
This may just be a case of typical Musk showmanship, but we have to say that as far as ideas go, the Tesla Roadster is one pretty little thing. Fingers crossed it’ll get to market, and toes crossed that we’ll get to sample it soon.