Can You Spot What’s Different on This Tesla Roadster Prototype?
Elon Musk had some interesting things to say about the Roadster, tooby Kirby Garlitos, on
Tesla’s annual shareholder’s meeting had its share of surprises, but one of the biggest highlights from the event was the unveiling of a new prototype for the upcoming Tesla Roadster. The prototype was spotted at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California, sitting alongside a Model 3, Model S, Model X, and a Tesla Semi prototype. Curiously, the Roadster was the only model that was cordoned off, suggesting that Tesla wasn’t keen on the idea of letting people get an up-close look at it.
Physically, there doesn’t appear to be too much of a difference between this particular prototype and the one that Tesla unveiled at its annual Tesla Summit late last year. It retains the same sleek and somewhat understated design that the other prototypes had. Eagle-eyed observers will note, though, that the new prototype has funky-looking windscreen wipers, something that the past versions did not have. Regardless, the clean, less-is-more design language that Tesla has used on the Model S, Model X, and Model 3 is evident on the new Roadster. The only significant difference is that this new prototype is dressed in white, which probably contributes to the more pronounced emphasis on the car’s body lines.
Based on our intel, the real big news about the next-gen Roadster is its performance abilities. Without diving into details, Musk revealed that the sports coupé will have a “SpaceX option package” that will enhance its supercar performance abilities to “even higher levels.”
Given that the Roadster is already being tipped as a supercar slayer in “Plaid Mode” form — it’s rumored to have the chops to sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 1.9 seconds, hit a quarter-mile in 8.9 seconds, carry a top speed of more than 250 mph, and feature a 200 kWh battery with 620 miles of range — there’s no telling what Musk meant when he referenced his other venture, SpaceX, as a potential option package for the Roadster. A sly cross-promotion, perhaps?
In any case, there’s a lot to be excited about as far as the second-generation Tesla Roadster is concerned. Just don’t get caught up in Musk’s usual over-the-top rhetoric and simply wait for the final product to arrive. There’s no definitive timetable on that — there’s nothing definitive when it comes to Tesla’s schedule — but for now, cross your fingers that the automaker lives up to its schedule and starts production in 2020.
Read our complete specualtive review for the upcoming 2020 Tesla Roadster
Read our full review of the 2015 Tesla Roadster 3.0