THE car world is awash with discussion, speculation, and internet vitriol over Tesla’s recently revealed Roadster 2.0.
Tesla chief executive Elon Musk clearly revelled in the surprise reveal last week, making some bold claims in relation to the prototype’s performance capabilities.
Musk stated the Roadster 2.0 would launch from a standstill to 60mph (97km/h) in 1.9sec before pushing past 100mph (160km/h) in 4.2sec. The quarter mile will apparently disappear in 8.9sec.
We’ll be sure to put those claims to the test if we get the opportunity to inveigle ourselves into one on Australian soil.
While we will have to be patient for that opportunity, Tesla was offering ride-alongs in a prototype shortly after the vehicle was revealed to the world.
There was a catch though. Anyone wanting to hitch a ride had to pony up a significant chunk of cash – the equivalent of $A66,315.
The payments were taken as a deposit for the car, which the company states will cost $US265,380.
Videos of the Roadster 2.0 launching and accelerating using what Tesla has dubbed "Plaid Mode" have lit up social media, but those going for a ride paid a pretty penny for the privilege.
The truly dedicated Tesla enthusiast could secure a limited edition (just 1000 will be built) "Founders Series" Roadster, but a full deposit of $A331,750 is required. If the full allocation is sold, which is likely, it’s an injection of $US331 million into Tesla’s bank accounts. That’s more than the electric car manufacturer raised when it floated on the US stock exchange in 2010.
The deposits taken by Tesla for the Roadster are not counted as revenue until a car is delivered to the customer. However, the money is added to cash holdings, and labelled as liabilities on the balance sheet, according to Automotive News.
Essentially Tesla can use the money from the deposits as it chooses.
The first examples of the reborn Roadster aren’t expected to roll off a Tesla production line until 2020 at the earliest.