It’s been a heady few months for Elon Musk – not least of all because the Tesla chief has been under renewed attack from investors who have made an $11 billion bet his company will fail.
So what better way to kick off the latest shareholder meeting than by going back to where it all started – the Tesla Roadster.
Musk chose the occasion on Tuesday (US time) to unveil a sleek white version of the company’s first electric car, assumed to be a third prototype of the next generation Roadster, after the red and silver versions that were unveiled last year alongside the Tesla Semi.
At the November unveiling, Musk said the purpose of the next-generation Roadster – which promises to be the fastest production car ever built – was to deliver a “hardcore smackdown” to petrol fuelled, internal combustion engine cars.
Presumably, it will do this via a top speed of over 400km/h, a 0-100km/h time of just 1.9 seconds, and a 200kWh battery that enables nearly 1000km of range in a single charge.
Starting price is reported to be at around $US200,000, which is considered to be quite reasonable, in terms of prestige supercars.
Of course, all of the other Tesla models were on display at the shareholder meeting, too – including the mass market Model 3, the Models S and X, and the Tesla Semi.
But our Twitter feed suggests it was the white next-gem Roadster – unveiled as the Semi was parking, according to reports – that got the most attention.
— Dennis Pascual (@dennis_p) June 5, 2018
Tesla is aiming to have the new Roadsters on roads by 2020, and has been taking reservations for the $US200,000 base version for a cool $50,000 deposit.
When the electric supercar will reach Australian shores is anyone’s guess, but it seems likely local internet entrepreneur and Tesla tragic Simon Hackett could be the first Australian driver to get one, just as he was the first time around.
Hackett, as we reported here, was among the first to place an order for the new Roadster, which he told RE was about “putting a stake in the heart” of any remaining anti-EV-only-internal-combustion-can-be-great sentiment.
“By releasing a vehicle clearly designed to outdo every single primary metric by which a supercar is judged, they are creating a new example of the future supremacy of electric driven transport over burning fossil fuels,” Hackett said.
“They are doing that by making the fastest road car ever made, by any (and all metrics). And – compared to its target market (Ferrari, Porsche, Bugatti, Koenigsegg et al) – it’s dramatically better value for money in doing so.
“I’m buying one because I want to visibly continue to support the innovation that drives change in sustainable transport. The same reason Formula E exists. The same reason the original Roadster existed – to be a signpost for, and a catalyst of, the future.”