The first-generation Tesla Roadster enjoyed great success on the market with more than 2,400 units sold in 31 countries through September 2012. The final 15 units were sold as a special Final Edition , giving the Tesla Roadster’s initial run a suitable sendoff.
For the second generation, Tesla is promising even greater things. In an interview with AutoCar, Tesla boss, George Blankenship, said that the next Roadster will be something never seen before and will "push the envelope beyond what anybody else is doing."
According to Blankenship, the next Roadster will be considerably improved when compared to the first generation. The first Roadster went from 0 to 60 mph in under 4 seconds and offered a range of 200 miles, but the next model is promised to do even better than the 300-mile range that the Model S sedan offers.
The next Roadster will arrive in about five years, after the Model X SUV arrives in 2014 or 2015 and a 3-series-sized four-door in 2015 or 2016. We think it is safe to expect the new Roadster sometime in 2016 or 2017.
Click past the jump to read more on the Tesla Roadster.
Not long ago, it was hard to use the term "sporty" in the same sentence with the word “electric.” That being said, as the technology progressed, green cars have started to grow faster and stronger, being able to compete against any famous sports car that can be found on today’s roads.
Tesla had a major role in permanently changing our perception of electric cars. Its sporty model - the Roadster – was launched in 2006 and was based on the similarly sporty Lotus Elise. Though, despite sharing the same platform with the Elise, the Roadster was a totally different breed of car.
This green monster is powered by a 248 hp (185 kW) electric motor fed by a 53-kilowatt-hour battery that offers an autonomy of up to 200 miles. However, going green and sporty doesn’t come cheap, as the Tesla Roadster has a starting price of $109,000.
Hit the jump for more details on the Tesla Roadster.
We always see new little wrinkles in automotive dealerships to try and make the car-buying experience seem less stressful and forced. Two key examples are the “No-Haggle” promise offered by now-defunct Saturn and the “Sign-and-Drive” deals offered by several manufacturers now, but started by VW . These are less about making the process easier for the consumer and more about increasing the dealer’s profits while displaying the illusion of an easy-going sales force, which is an oxymoron for any commissioned sales job.
Tesla appears to be going into a realm where car buying is a simple and stress-free environment. How they are achieving this is by beginning with the elimination of the traditional dealership and replacing it with smaller stores in local malls. The second step is to eliminate all commissions and pay the employees a salary. The third step is to not require car sales experience as a prerequisite for hiring, which eliminates the high-pressure “Sell now or sell never” mentality. To get a good picture of what to expect, walk into an Apple store in a local mall and see how laid back it is. You can walk in and play with all of the gadgets without a single sales person bothering you until you ask.
You may be wondering about the floor models and demo models. Keep in mind that all Teslas are built to order, so stores only need a handful of models on the floor and a few test vehicles in the mall’s parking lot. The biggest focus of these stores is to simply educate the customer about Tesla models, and what better place to get plenty of people to educate than a traffic-heavy mall?
Our hats go off to Tesla in its new approach to vehicle sales, but we have a sneaking suspicion that we will see Tesla dealerships and commission-based sales in the near future. Especially if sales start taking off and more models have to be kept on hand for the I-want-it-now customer. So we’ll see exactly how long Tesla can hang onto this low-pressure buying experience before converting into your typical high-pressure dealership.
The new Launch Bonus Pack includes a collection of ten cars previously available only to those Forza 4 players who had either pre-ordered from specific retail outlets, or picked up the game during its first run via the "Ship Bonus Car Pack." The new Launch Bonus Pack is available for Xbox Live and can be yours for 560 Microsoft Points.
Tesla is wrapping up their Lotus-based Roadster in 2011 and making way for their new Roadster - completely Tesla from the ground up - in 2014. But before that happens, Tesla will be reeling in the last bit of cash on their current model with one last Final Edition, limited to five models. These units will only be sold on the North American market, but Tesla has promised that similar editions will also be offered for the European and Asian markets, making room for 15 final units in this current model’s future.
The Tesla Roadster Final Edition is finished in a special Sporting Atomic Red paint and then combined with a duo of dark silver stripes on its hood and rear clamshell. The look is finished off with an exclusive set of anthracite aluminum wheels.
However, the exterior changes are the only changes that will be made to the model. Expect to find the same electric motor under the hood; a 3-phase, 4-pole induction motor producing a maximum net power of 248 HP. The car will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and can travel more than 200 miles per charge.
The gloom and doom that fans felt when Tesla announced it was ending production of the Roadster electric car will end up being short-lived.
According to reports, Tesla’s flagship model will be returning to our lives in 2014, albeit in a slightly different guise. Unlike the first incarnation of the Roadster, which used a body supplied from Lotus and was limited to only 2,500 units, the new Roadster will be built from the ground up by Tesla themselves. This set-up is similar to the company’s second model, the Model S, which had Tesla’s fingerprints all over it from the very beginning.
No word yet on what the parameters for the 2014 Roadster is going to be but it appears that it would carry a tweaked version of theModel S platform or the "third generation platform" as some folks within the Tesla circle have called it.
Tesla CEO Elan Musk has said that this new ’mass-market’ platform will be the jumping board for all of the company’s cars in the next four to five years and it appears that we already have an answer as to what model will spearhead that transition.
So rest easy, all you "Tes-lovers". It appears that the Roadster’s demise was greatly exaggerated. It’ll only take a hiatus before it returns to our lives in 2014.
Tesla Motors’ portfolio of vehicles is slowly growing, which is welcome news for a company that only a few years ago, was struggling to make a profit. In a recent meeting to discuss the company’s quarterly earnings, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that the company is preparing to unveil its very first sport utility electric vehicle by the end of this year.
The SUV, which is being touted as the ’Model X’, will share the same powertrain and technology as the other electric cars the company has in its line-up, saving precious time and resources in the development of the SUV along the way.
“The plan is to have an unveiling of the Model X prototype in the mid-December time frame,” Musk said. “So far it’s looking good, I don’t think anything will cause an issue.”
Another factor that expedited the development of the Model X came from the $210 million Tesla was able to raise a few months ago, enough funding to keep the project moving along.
As for the Model X, the vehicle is set to become Tesla’s third electric model following in the reins of the Roadster and the Model S . Full details surrounding the Model X have yet to be revealed, but that hasn’t stopped Tesla from looking at building 15,000 Model X units every year as soon as production begins in 2013.
*Photo features the Tesla Roadster and the Tesla Model S
Microsoft isn’t letting up on what they are calling the most cutting-edge racing game in history in their Forza Motorsport series and they are bringing it back into the headlines with a Ferrari 458 Italia gracing the official cover and the list of goodies players will get if they preorder their copy.
The fourth installment of Forza is scheduled to hit shelves in the Fall 2011 and the new support for Kinect, as well as the classic controls, will be up and ready to thrill gamers. If Fall 2011 is too long to wait, fans of the game will be happy to know that U.S. retailers will be allowing them to pre-order Forza for $59.99.
Pre-ordering the game wouldn’t exactly be all that necessary if doing so didn’t open up the doors to a bunch of extra goodies. When you pre-order Forza Motorsport at any retail location, the game will come with an exclusive in-game car pack that includes a 1965 Ford Mustang GT Coupe, a 2011 Koenigsegg Agera , a 1997 Lexus SC300 , a 2011 RUF RGT-8 , and a 2011 Tesla Roadster Sport . Players can race, tune, paint, and share their creations with their friends, but the pack will only be available in the first production run of “Forza Motorsport 4” game discs.
That’s not all, either. If gamers preorder their game at certain retailers, other fun prizes will be included in their pack. Hit the jump to check out the list of retailers and their extra goodies.
Not one to back away from the bombardment of complaints they’ve received over the years, the producers of Top Gear have returned fire at Tesla over the latter’s surprising lawsuit against the popular British show.
Tesla is suing Top Gear for libel and malicious falsehood over a review of the Tesla Roadster that happened a little over two years ago. For their part, Top Gear is not one to lay down without a fight, or in this case, a response to Tesla’s claims. So the show’s executive producer, Andy Wilman, went on the offensive and released a letter explaining their side of the story.
It’s not the first time that Top Gear has been in hot water, but there seems to be a certain sense of seriousness with this particular lawsuit and we won’t be surprised if the British show sees this case all the way through the courts, as opposed to their usual routine of witty banter on one of their episodes.
To read about Andy Wilman’s response to Tesla’s claims, proceed after the jump.
For all the fun and hilarity Top Gear has given us for the better part of a decade, the show has also been a lightning rod of controversy as evidenced by the countless number of complaints and law suits the show – and BBC as a network – has received from just about everybody it has ‘offended’ since the show became a worldwide phenomenon.
Apparently, one of the recipient’s of Top Gear’s sometimes brash and swaggering wrath has decided to bite back.
Two years ago, the British show caused quite a stir on one of their shows for their sharp and pointed criticisms of the Tesla Roadster . Understandably so, it didn’t sit well with the folks over at Tesla Motors and after a few back and forth barbs with the British show, the California-based automaker decided to turn the other cheek – with the strong arm of a lawsuit.
According to Tesla, Top Gear’s whole review of the Roadster was predicated on their pre-existing grounds that electric cars don’t work – if you watch the video, you’re going to notice James May tease a future segment later on in the episode, debunking the notion of electric cars being the future of the auto industry – and in turn, giving viewers a distorted image of the Roadster as a completely unreliable and irrelevant car.
Tesla’s VP of Communications, Ricardo Reyes, elaborated on the issue through the company’s blog site. In it, he wrote that “the show’s script, written before the cars were tested, has host Jeremy Clarkson concluding the segment by saying, "in the real world, it doesn’t seem to work."
Top Gear has ruffled a lot of feathers on its show, but Tesla seems to be taking this very seriously. Whether BBC decides to engage in a sartorial volley with the American automaker is totally in their character, but in this instance, it looks like they may have to play nice and put on a serious look before facing an automaker that’s throwing libel charges at them.
Or, they could just avoid all the hoopla and just stop rebroadcasting the episode in question and set the record straight about the car. But knowing Top Gear and BBC, what are the chances of that happening?
Check out the controversial Top Gear segment after the jump.