Perhaps people have forgotten that the Tesla Roadster is what started it all.
The innovative electric supercar stunned the auto world all the way back in 2008 and remained in production into 2012. The car, which used the body of a Lotus Elise and Tesla’s own electric drivetrain, carried a $109,000 base price and could accelerate from 0-60 in under 4 seconds. Tesla produced about 2,400 copies of the car before discontinuing it to focus efforts on the Model S sedan.
The Model S, of course, became wildly popular and quickly erased memories of the Roadster. Then the Model X hype was followed by a massive number of pre-orders for the Model 3, and the Roadster suddenly felt like ancient history.
Maybe that’s why no one has reacted to news that the Roadster is making a comeback.
A Tesla representative has (basically) confirmed that a new Roadster will hit the streets.
While giving a presentation at an electronics trade fair in Gothenburg, Sweden, Tesla’s Peter Bardenfleth-Hansen commented,
… I’d probably tell you that we will manufacture it again. It will look a little different, a little faster and a little bigger.
The company hasn’t released any additional information, aside from last summer when CEO Elon Musk said a new Roadster would be an all-new car and exceptionally fast. So fast, in fact, that he has reserved a special category of speed for it: Maximum Plaid. (Musk is obviously a fan of the Mel Brooks comedy “Space Balls.”)
Tesla’s current top-speed technology is Ludicrous Mode, which can send the Model S P90D to 60 miles per hour from a complete stop in 2.8 seconds. Beating that speed will put the new Roadster in the company of Bugatti and the Porsche 918 Spyder.
This is exciting news for electric car enthusiasts, or at least we would assume so. For some reason there’s not a lot of buzz online right now about the upcoming car. Why not? Perhaps it’s because Tesla has positioned itself as a maker of high-end luxury passenger vehicles, and people have forgotten about its heritage.
As soon as Tesla releases images of the new car, and teases us with performance numbers, we can be sure this apathy toward the new Roadster will be replaced with the same level of awe and excitement that captured our collective attention back in 2008.
Expect the new Roadster sometime before 2020.
Would you prefer your Tesla as a roadster, sedan, or SUV?