Print 78 comment(s) - last by mindless1.. on Aug 20 at 8:28 PM

0-60 in 4 seconds, 250 mile range

CNET is reporting that the initial batch of 100 Tesla Roadsters has been sold out. According to Tesla CEO Martin Eberhard, 100 people each dropped down a $100,000 USD deposit. Some of the lucky future owners include Google co-founder Larry Page and eBay co-founder Jeff Skoll.

The Tesla Roadster is 100% electric, has a top speed of just over 130 MPH and can zip to 60 MPH in just 4 seconds. The 2,500 pound roadster can go 250 miles on a charge and costs about 1c per mile to operate based on current energy costs. The Tesla Roadster is powered by a 3-phase, 4-pole AC induction motor that routes power through a 2-speed semi-automatic transmission.

The roadster makes use of a proprietary lithium-ion battery back (6,381 cells) that has an estimated serviceable life of 100,000 miles. Once the 100,000 mark is reached, performance will gradually fall over time. And when you've reached your 250 mile operational range, you can pull into your garage and plug it in to the Electric Vehicle Service Equipment (EVSE), the Tesla Roadster's home-based charging system. The charger will top the battery pack off in just 3.5 hours.

And don't think that the Tesla Roadster is some barebones machine either. It comes standard with dual airbags, ABS, traction control, cruise control, A/C, heated seats, iPod connectivity, power windows, a partial leather interior and LED taillights. Factory options include GPS navigation, satellite radio, a body-colored hardtop and a full leather interior.

If the Tesla Roadster looks somewhat familiar to you, it's because the design and structure is loosely based on the featherweight Lotus Elise that has been wowing the automotive press and owners alike around the globe for the past ten years. It also is built on the same assembly line as the Elise. For a closer look at the Tesla Roadster, you can take a look at Wired’s test drive. You can catch a CNET video of the car in action here.

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RE: SIlly that...
By TomZ on 8/16/2006 4:46:18 PM , Rating: 3
Its silly that it took an outside car company to go at it right. Beautiful design, Performance of some supercars, good range. WTF where the big companies thinking with Hybrids and making everything ugly as sin

Well, did you notice the price, like US$100,000? If consumers were all willing (and able!) to pay $100K for their cars, then we could all have electric cars today. There is no technology in this car that is not available and already known to conventional automotive manufacturers like Toyota, GM, Honda, Ford, Volkswagen, etc.

Hybrids, on the other hand, can be produced at a cost that is just slightly higher than traditional cars. That is why the major manufacturers are focusing on this technology and what makes them commercially viable in high volumes, where pure electric cars are not, at least cars with specifications like the Tesla.

RE: SIlly that...
By bob661 on 8/16/2006 5:04:30 PM , Rating: 3
Well, did you notice the price, like US$100,000?
AND where are going to charge these cars on that trip with the wife out to Vegas? Oh that's right, you can't. AND where are the kids going to fit? I guess you can put them in the lack of trunk with the gym bag. This is basically an expensive commuter car. It's the tree hunggers Ferrari except even a Ferrari is more practical.

RE: SIlly that...
By jack2031 on 8/16/2006 6:13:39 PM , Rating: 2
This car isn't meant to replace minivans, it's meant for a specific niche of car customer and hands down, it is winning. Think about it...0-60 in 4 seconds, only 100,000 and you never pay for premium gas? Talk about a great deal.

As for longer trips, there is included accessories to let you charge from any 115V outlet.

Also, look for this company in a few years to sell their low-end consumer line car that WILL fit the needs of the family. It looks to be like a Camry sedan but with an electric engine.

RE: SIlly that...
By WxGuy192 on 8/17/2006 2:29:29 AM , Rating: 2
Think about it...0-60 in 4 seconds, only 100,000 and you never pay for premium gas?

Folks who buy >$100,00 cars don't usually have a problem spending money on gas. In fact, I haven't seen too many >$100,000 cars that are "daily-drivers", so I'm not sure how much gas people really spend on them anyway.

Your point is taken, but we've entered another realm of consumer. If you get this car for the 'fuel economy', then you're doing so to make a point, IMO. Don't get me wrong -- I'd grab one if I had $100,000 laying around.

RE: SIlly that...
By timmiser on 8/17/2006 3:19:18 AM , Rating: 2
But if they took the exotic performance sports car element out of the equation and got the price down to $50 G's for a more normal car with more normal performanc, then you'd be talking. I'd gladly pay $50 grand on a economy car that would NEVER require gasoline plus it is a pretty rare occasion to drive over 250 miles in a day.

A typical person pays about $2500 per year in gasoline today. 10 years of that and you are already saving $25,000 which would be the price difference to break even. (16,000 miles per year @ 20 MPG @ 3.13/gal = $2500 fuel costs per year)

RE: SIlly that...
By marvdmartian on 8/17/2006 9:17:29 AM , Rating: 2
I wonder.....did they use Sony laptop batteries to run this thing??? ;)

RE: SIlly that...
By bob661 on 8/17/2006 9:38:47 AM , Rating: 2
It looks to be like a Camry sedan but with an electric engine.
I wonder how much? I guess it doesn't really matter. I won't be buying one.

RE: SIlly that...
By bob661 on 8/17/2006 9:47:32 AM , Rating: 2
As for longer trips, there is included accessories to let you charge from any 115V outlet.
It's good that they have this feature but in reality who's going to let you use their electricity (for free) to charge this car back up? Anyone know of any charging stations between SoCal and Vegas? How about SoCal and Phoenix?

RE: SIlly that...
By rrsurfer1 on 8/17/2006 9:54:59 AM , Rating: 2
Considering that a charge should cost ~250 cents or $2.50 for a charge, you'd have to know some cheap people to not let you charge it.

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