By on May 8, 2020

New Tesla Roadster

Tesla CEO Elon Musk appeared on the Joe Rogan Podcast this week, mentioning that the resurrected Roadster stands to see less love as the company turns its focus to other projects. Rogan, who already owns a Model S P100D and is an avid car collector, said he was interested in picking up the new Roadster once it becomes available. To that, Musk had some bad news. Higher-volume cars would have to come first.

“Roadster is kind of like dessert,” he said. “We gotta get the meat and potatoes and greens and stuff.”

The rest of the interview saw the two men discuss Musk’s opposition to unconstitutional lockdown orders resulting from the coronavirus pandemic, as well as humanity’s growing need for symbiosis with technology in order to ensure we’re not left behind as artificial intelligence begins to surpass us — boring stuff that has nothing to do with cars. 

Despite Tesla’s returning Roadster seeing frequent mention in 2017, we’ve been left with more questions than answers. Sales were initially expected to commence in 2020, with the car boasting the fastest acceleration you’re likely to find on solid ground. Base models were alleged to offer a 2.1-second launch to 100 km/h (62 mph), while thruster-equipped betters were said to do so in 1.9 seconds.

Oh, did we not mention the proposed SpaceX package that adds 10 cold gas thrusters that improve performance (everything from improving lateral G forces to helping straight-line acceleration and braking)? Well, that may be because it seems fantastical and the kind of thing that would be prohibitively difficult to implement on a street car. Likewise is the 620 miles worth of range the car is supposed to yield from a single charge of its 200 kWh battery. With promises like that, it’s no wonder the electric hot rod saw its launch delayed.

Musk even said the car may be able to hover off the ground, Back to the Future-styleand will definitely usher in the new three-motor drivetrain (the “Plaid Powertrain”) for use in future products.

While we never expected all of this to make it to production, we knew Tesla set some lofty goals for itself; it wouldn’t be surprising to see the model enter into a prolonged development phase. In 2019, Musk announced the next-generation Roadster would be delayed until 2021. The Model S Plaid will now lead with the new triple-motor drivetrain and will be added to the Roadster after launch.

But that date is looking almost as far into the future as when the car was initially announced in 2017. In addition to an improved Model S, Elon told Rogan he also wants to get the company’s Cybertruck out ahead of the Roadster. And he’s a fool for saying so, right?

Nah, not really. While the Roadster sounds like it’ll be the craziest thing on the market, we’re not positive it can deliver on all of its claims. Achieving a 600-mile range would be a colossal triumph in itself, but Musk is basically promising to build the world’s fastest car (with low-level flight capabilities) for the low price of $250,000.

Unfortunately for some, the buzz around Cybertruck is fresher and louder. It also happens to be in an emerging segment of vehicles (battery driven trucks) that several manufacturers have suddenly taken an interest in. It wouldn’t pay for Tesla to wait to deliver its pickup until after Ford, General Motors, Rivian, Lordstown Motors, and whoever else manages to beat it to the punch.

Other aspects impacting the timing of the Roadster launch, according to Musk, include increasing production volumes for the Model Y and completing a new Tesla factory in Germany. Current projections have that facility kicking off in the middle of next year, meaning the Roadster probably wouldn’t enter into production until late 2021.

New Tesla Roadster

[Images: Tesla Motors]

 

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31 Comments on “Tesla Roadster Delayed, Cybertruck Prioritized...”


  • avatar
    dividebytube

    >>boasting the fastest acceleration you’re likely to find on solid ground.

    for a production car

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “620 miles worth of range the car is supposed to yield from a single charge of its 200 kWh battery”

    Why would that be difficult? That’s only 3.1 miles/kWh, an efficiency which is lower than the Model S, 3, and Y already get. 620 miles should be easy on such a large battery.

    Not surprising about the delay. Low-volume products are especially vulnerable now.

    • 0 avatar
      Master Baiter

      I don’t see the point of a 200KHw battery in a sports car.

      What would make sense is a modular system where you could select from 50, 100 or 200KWh variants, depending on whether you want max. performance or more of a long-legged highway GT cruiser, or something in between.

    • 0 avatar
      Matt Posky

      I was referencing the unrealistic-sounding thruster package, not the battery. The only real issues I see with energy storage will be ensuring supply and tamping down weight so the pack doesn’t weight a literal ton.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        “and tamping down weight so the pack doesn’t weight a literal ton.”

        We should know a little more about the cells they’ll be using on battery investor day. They’ve made a lot of battery advances recently, with the tab-less patent just in the last few days, so it’s hard to say where they’ll be in terms of gravimetric density. All I’ve heard so far is 4000 cycles for durability. If they get the cells to 500 Wh/kg, that would get the weight to 880 lbs for the cells. But, I have no idea what they’ll weigh. I suppose a wild guess very wide range guess would be between 400 to 800 Wh/kg. Most manufacturers seem to have 500 Wh/kg in their sights, so they need to go beyond that to have a serious lead.

  • avatar
    Imagefont

    Well that makes perfect sense.
    /s

  • avatar
    ajla

    “humanity’s growing need for symbiosis with technology”

    Tesla-branded android girlfriends coming soon.

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    What does 1.9 seconds to 60 do to your internal organs, assuming you’re not a fighter pilot or astronaut?

    • 0 avatar
      dividebytube

      Top fuel dragster can do 0-60 in 0.8 seconds and the drivers manage to live (most of the time).
      https://autowise.com/7-vehicles-that-go-from-0-60-in-under-2-seconds/

      • 0 avatar
        ToolGuy

        From your link:
        “A Top Fuel dragster accelerates so quickly that it’s already passed 60 mph by the time the rear tires have crossed the start line (300 inches).”

        0-60 in 25 feet. Amazing.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      Compared to some amusement park rides, that’s slow.

    • 0 avatar
      Vulpine

      @Master Bater (sp intentional): Most people realize more G-forces than that simply riding on a typical roller coaster… not even one of the steel ones. That’s only 1.4Gs, according to an online calculator: https://www.smartconversion.com/unit_calculation/Acceleration_calculator.aspx The old Saturn V rocket boosters pushed maybe 5 Gs and jet fighter pilots often exceed 6 Gs.

      In other words, that 1.9 seconds 0 to 60 will do almost nothing to your internal organs as that is only barely higher than lying flat on your back in bed.

  • avatar
    Slawek

    Tesla 3 Long Range uses 310Wh/mile at 70mph. 200kWh battery would give 645 miles range. https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a30169467/tesla-model-3s-aero-wheel-covers-efficiency-test/

  • avatar
    redapple

    Elon’s baby momma is freakie deekie.

  • avatar
    EBFlex

    Nearly every time this fraud opens his mouth its nothing but lies.

    It’s also hysterical that he’s prioritizing the fake, vapor ware truck that will never see the light of day versus a roadster that has a slightly better chance of becoming a reality.

    This company has no chance.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      You’ve been saying the same wrong things about Musk and Tesla for 2+ years, while they keep delivering new products and expanding market share, rewarded with a (too high) stock price.

      You never once substantiate your claims about fraud and vaporware. But I do believe FSD is actually fraudulent vaporware.

      Other than FSD, Musk’s prediction rate is way better than yours.

      • 0 avatar
        Art Vandelay

        Soooo….He said at one point that he was going to build a car that could hover and had thrusters on it and start building it this year. Now I know the virus thing happened but I am inclined to think I would not be getting a hovering roadster with rockets on it this year with or without the virus. So yeah, I’m going to say the hovering rocket assisted roadster is vaporware.

        I believe the roadster will get built some day, but that day will be long after the delayed cybertruck and it will not have rockets nor will it hover. That is idiotic.

    • 0 avatar
      Imagefont

      Expect to get you Elio Motors three wheeled suicide wheelbarrow before the Cybertruck ever sees the light of day.

    • 0 avatar
      shipping96

      EBflex you mad bro? Get roasted by your Tesla short positions?

      Musk may be a loose cannon. He misses pretty much every deadline. But he eventually delivers on his promises. His batting average is way better than yours.

  • avatar
    shipping96

    EBflex you mad bro? Get roasted by your Tesla short positions?

    Musk may be a loose cannon. He misses pretty much every deadline. But he eventually delivers on his promises. His batting average is way better than yours.

  • avatar
    Garak

    It’ll be interesting to see how much of the cybertruck design remains in the final production model. Obviously all the sharp angles have to get blunted, you need mirrors and such, and the useless rear doors need to be redesigned.

  • avatar
    dwford

    And what of all the people that put down $50,000 deposits for the Roadster starting in 2017??

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