Tesla Motors' Roadster has
been in development for quite some time now, but it appears that there is
finally light at the end of the tunnel for the project team.
Malcolm Powell, Tesla Motors' Vice President of Vehicle
Integration, announced yesterday that The Tesla Roadster has passed all Federal Motor Vehicle
Safety Standards (FMVSS) and is legal for sale in all 50 states.
"Thanks to great design, structural analysis, build
quality and well run test management, we have successfully completed the entire
suite of dynamic impact testing to meet both FMVSS and, as importantly, our own
very strenuous internal performance targets," said Powell. "This is a
great achievement for Tesla; it takes us another (major) step closer to our
final goal and is another demonstration that EVs are as real as any other
vehicle on the road."
The Tesla Roadster performed admirably in front, rear and
side crash tests. "I always find it interesting when people say, 'Isn't it
dangerous carrying all those batteries around?' Well I don’t know about you,
but I’d rather carry a load of relatively inert battery cells than 10 gallons
of highly volatile, flammable liquid," added Powell. "I will not comment on
how other companies design their vehicles but at Tesla, we have paid great
attention to the integrity of the design for crash management."
In addition, the vehicle passed basic rear view mirror,
lighting and windshield defogging/defrosting tests.
Production of the $100,000 roadster will begin on March 17
although the first models to roll off the assembly line will come equipped with
Tesla claims that the temporary transmissions are of a
design that has been road tested more than 100,000 miles, so owners shouldn't
be too concerned about reliability or safety. Performance, however, does take a
nose dive -- the first production models will only accelerate 0-60 in 5.7
seconds instead of 4 seconds as previously promised.
The temporary transmissions will be replaced with
production-level hardware at Tesla Motors’ expense when it is available.
The Tesla Roadster is loosely based on the
aluminum-intensive Lotus Elise and features an electric motor powered by 6,381
lithium-ion cells. The projected range for the two-seater is just
over 200 miles.
quote: 5.7s is slow? Maybe on a racetrack. My car is rated around 8s and it's plenty zippy for me.
quote: Now, save your dripping, sarcastic, opinionated, close minded idiocy for politics. Would you like some milk and cookies to go with that?
quote: The Boxster is a piece of crap for people who want to say "I own a Porsche". It's the new Mustang for wealthy, middle aged women.
quote: From what I've been reading there's probably going to be plenty of new battery breakthroughs on the way.
quote: Welcome to the 21st century. This is the way it's going to be. No more loud, inefficient, gas guzzling cars burning fuel and making the oil sheiks in the Middle East as rich as God. We're going to have super efficient, quiet, ultra smooth, high torque/high horsepower electric cars. If you want to hear the sounds of internal combustion engines for nostalgia sake, you can get an .mp3 soundtrack of the old Ferraris and Porsches from "the old days of gasoline cars" and play it in your electric car. :)
quote: Tesla holds the promise of putting the Ferrari in the dust. So, that is likely to catch more 'rich and famous' glamour.
quote: Besides, a Tesla is way cheaper than a Ferrari!
quote: In any case, if we're arguing over how well the Tesla will do-- they sold out their initial production run almost before they announced it.
quote: Combustion engines sound so rough and inefficient, electric is elegant and modern.
quote: The maxim in battery design is, "High Speed, Long Range, Low Cost: Choose any two." I think they chose High Speed and (relatively) long range for the speeds, and forgot about cost. Now, if you drive this more slowly, then you would get better range.
quote: Power draw from the batteries is the same at 40mph than it is at 100mph...
quote: I can only dream of the day I take one out on the Autocross course vs. high-powered, gas burning Porsche's, Corvettes, Camaro's, BMW's, Miatas, WRX/STI's, EVO's etc. and spank them with an electric :)
quote: As for another poster claiming electric propulsion to be inherently inferior to an internal combustion engine - just check out the electric planes and helis at your local park! Electric power offers a degree of control not possible with IC.
quote: (sorry but $100K for a sports car that barely keeps up with a $50K Corvette
quote: sorry but $100K for a sports car that barely keeps up with a $50K Corvette?
quote: People buying $100K two-seaters are looking for exclusivity and bragging rights, not a chance to drag race a Corvette
quote: wow, that is a lot of money for a car that can only go 200 miles per charge - guess it will be for looks rather than actual use
quote: In addition, the vehicle passed basic rear view mirror, lighting and windshield defogging/defrosting tests.
quote: Not if they live in California. Don't they already have energy issues?