By November 17, 2017 Read More →

$250,000 Tesla Roadster upstages Tesla Semi unveiling

tesla roadster

The Tesla Roadster can go from 0 to 60 in 1.9 seconds and has a maximum speed of about 250 mph.  Tesla image.

Tesla Roadster has 620 mile range

On Tuesday evening just as Elon Musk wrapped up the Tesla Semi reveal, the Tesla Roadster wowed the crowd when it drove out of the big truck’s trailer, into the spotlight.

Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk said the second-generation $250,000 EV would be the fastest production car ever.

The cost of the car is expected to drop to $200,000 after the first 1,000 are produced.  Tesla says all costs will be paid up front.

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The Tesla Roadster has a removable glass roof, can seat four and will travel 620 miles on a single charge.  Musk said the range capability is a new record for an electric vehicle.

The car can go from 0 to 60 in 1.9 seconds and has a maximum speed of about 250 mph.

“You’ll be able to travel from LA to San Francisco, and back, at highway speed without recharging. The point of doing this is to just give a hardcore smackdown to gasoline cars. Driving a gasoline sports car is going to feel like a steam engine with a side of quiche,” Musk said.

While many car enthusiasts are agog over the Tesla Roadster, industry analysts are wondering how the company will launch this the sports car and the electric semi truck at a time when the Palo Alto-based company is struggling to produce its more affordable Model 3 sedan.

Some are concerned the sports car and newly unveiled semi truck will be expensive distractions for Tesla, which needs to set up a new production facility for the large trucks.

“The specs on the new semi truck and sports car would put both vehicles at the top of their segments…assuming they can be produced and sold as part of a sustainable business plan,” Karl Brauer, executive publisher of Kelley Blue Book and Autotrader, told Reuters.

“So far that final element has eluded Tesla Motors, which makes it difficult to see these vehicles as more than ‘what if’ concept cars,” he added.

The company is already spending about $1 billion per quarter as it sets up its Model 3 production facility.  Tesla is also considering building a factory in China to produce cars.

The Tesla Semi was unveiled on Thursday. So far, Walmart and J.B. Hunt have reserved a number of the electric big rigs. Tesla image.

According to Musk, the Tesla Semi can go up to 500 miles, at maximum weight at highway speed on a single charge, however, he did not give the size of the payload.

A 30 minutes charge will allow the truck to go 400 miles and Musk says Tesla will build a global, solar-powered network of “megachargers”.

He adds that the Tesla Semi will be 20 per cent cheaper to operate than a diesel truck.

The trucks will be produced with self-driving technology that will allow the trucks to travel in convoys.  One human driver will drive the lead truck in the convoy which will be connected electronically and will copy maneuvers made by the lead semi.

But, the autonomous semi faces an uncertain regulatory future after truckers lobbied that safety and millions of jobs could be at risk.

On Friday, Walmart announced it will order a total of 15 Tesla Semi trucks, five for the United States and 10 for Canada.

“We believe we can learn how this technology performs within our supply chain, as well as how it could help us meet some of our long-term sustainability goals, such as lowering emissions,” the retailer said in a statement.

US trucking company J.B. Hunt says it has reserved multiple Tesla Semis for use on the US West Coast.

Old Dominion Freight Line Inc told Reuters it will not sign on to reserve any of the Tesla big rigs.

“We met with Tesla and at this time we do not see a fit with their product and our fleet,” Dave Bates, senior vice president of operations, said in an email.


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