Tesla Motors Roadster Going Out With A Flourish

The Tesla Roadster is going out with a flourish. After selling more than 2100 of the $109,000 all-electric sports cars in 31 countries, Tesla is, at least for now, winding down its iconic mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive car that helped make green cars cool.

However, Tesla still has some Roadsters destined for Europe, Asia and Australia, and the California-based company recently announced that these last few cars will get a special “limited edition” treatment. And according to the company, they’ve saved the best for the very last. “These Roadsters,” said Tesla honcho Ricardo Reyes, “are our best ever.”

tesla-roadster

image via Tesla

The new updates include the choice of three “exclusive encore” colors — including black, gray and orange. Tesla also enhanced the front windscreen seals to make the cabin quieter, beefed up the air conditioning system and added Xenon headlamps for better night driving vision.

The company also added some improvements to help the sports car deal with cold weather and snowy conditions. The new edition Roadster now comes with a rear snow cover and and improved motor and inverter systems for better performance in snow and ice. Additionally, the company is including new mobile connectors for charging in Europe and Japan.

The bad news is that this edition, because it’s lacking two-stage passenger airbags, won’t be road legal in the States.

tesla-roadster-sport-interi

image via Tesla

Tesla, it is said, may have a new version of the Roadster ready by 2014.  For now though, as the first highway-capable all-electric vehicle in serial production available in the United States, the Roadster leaves quite a legacy. We’ve seen the vehicle win some green car races, lose others, be used as a fashion accessory and cross some great distances in the Australian outback.

It will be interesting to see how the Model S goes for Tesla, though with the departure of two executives and stock drop off as a result, things could be tough for the luxury EV pioneer as it tries to go more mainstream.

Steve Duda lives in West Seattle, WA with three dogs and a lot of outdoor gear. A part-time fly fishing fishing guide and full-time writer, Steve’s work has appeared in Rolling Stone, Seattle Weekly, American Angler, Fly Fish Journal, The Drake, Democracy Now! and many others.

  • Anonymous

    nThe Detroit News reports insurance premiums have declined 5 years in a row. I can’t remember a cycle like this ever. Of course, not everybody has had a decline, mine actually went up high but found u00a0″Clearance Auto” that I could easily reduce itn

  • Anonymous

    Great this has sure created a lot of green jobs in the US!!!! Oooops it not made in america and no parts come from amrica …never mind

    • Pete

      Tesla received federal loans to help it produce the Model S — made in Fremont, Calif.u00a0nhttp://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/business&id=8441528

      • Anonymous

        That’s great news that works out to $1.5 MILLION per job. Now that’su00a0 real changeu00a0

        • Pete Danko

          Not sure I understand how you figure that. If Tesla succeeds, the loan gets paid back (like the Chrysler loan, for instance). Thus the cost to taxpayers for the jobs is negligible (administrative costs). If the company doesn’t succeed, then there are no jobs. So it is a gamble, and so far it looks pretty good, though far from certain — the Model S is coming in on time and at the promised price, with deposits for the entire 2012 production already in hand. And the stock (it’s a publicly traded company, so we get a pretty good constant gauge of the market’s view of how it’s performing) is hanging in there. I think 2013 will be the really telling year for the company.

        • Dave829

          Theyu00a0 are madeu00a0 inu00a0 Californiau00a0 andu00a0 beingu00a0 exportedu00a0 aroundu00a0 theu00a0 world.u00a0 Dou00a0 youu00a0 haveu00a0 au00a0 betteru00a0 idea?u00a0u00a0

          • Anonymous

            Yea pay down the debt return the $600 Million to the treasury.

          • Pete

            $465 millionnhttps://lpo.energy.gov/?projects=tesla-motors

          • barry sorento

            ASSEMBLED in California, not made.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PCPQB5FFIO2DTA5RY7UCRTP5D4 Alligator Mouth

            Dude, they are assembled in the USA.u00a0 The body is produced in the UK by lotus.u00a0 The battery is made in Japan/China.u00a0 The inverter driver that runs motor is made by Simicron in Europe.

          • Pete

            That might have been true for the Roadster, but not so for the Model S. In reply to my inquiry, the company stated:n”Tesla will build almost all components of Model S, including the batterynand motor, and future vehicles at the Tesla Factory.”nnWhat does this mean, exactly? Again, according to thencompany: u201cTesla is building cars in the U.S. end to end — starting with thenmassive roll of aluminum, stamping it ourselves, molding our own plastics,napplying our own paint, building our own interiors, quality testing on our ownnindoor and outdoor tracks. Tesla is committed to vertical integration with anview toward job creation, cost-efficiency and quality of its vehicles. Teslansources as many parts as possible in the U.S. and on-shoring manufacturingnwhere possible. More than 50 percent of Teslau2019s Model S suppliers are locatednin the U.S.u201d(Pete Danko, EarthTechling)

          • Evan

            Pete-
            Could I possibly view Tesla’s reply to your inquiry?  I’m doing an undergraduate consulting project on Tesla and am interested in the information in your quote above.  Would you mind forwarding it to me at evantcav@bu.edu? Thanks

          • Pete Danko

            Evan, see my email reply to you. Cheers,
            Pete

      • barry sorento

        Vehicle is ASSEMBLED in Freemont, with foreign parts.nI’m going to start a new car company. I need 5 Billion dollars (what the hell, I might as well ask for all I can), I’ll have 50 people working in my office @ 100,000. each, I’ll have 20 people handling the advertising @ 75,000. each, I’ll have 40 design engineers working on the car @ 125,000. each, I’ll farm out the manufacturing of the parts once I come up with a plan, and I’ll have 20 illegal immigrants at the assembly plant putting the parts together. nWe plan to sellu00a01 million cars a year @ 50,000. each, less a 20,000. goverment tax credit, less 10,000 energy credit.nu00a0u00a0@c71ae02577574ae37d44c4d1d2a5416d:disqusu00a0I’ll have thousands of, oooops, hundreds of jobs to offer as long as I get government subsidy. I’ll probably go out of business in 2 years though.u00a0Every new vehicle made (if one is made) will contain a plaque on the dash advising the owner that it their vehicleu00a0has been manufactured at a cost of 1,000,000. each in tax payers money. nSpecial license plates will also be on eachu00a0vehicle, “vote Obama 2012, bend over for another 4 years”.u00a0u00a0u00a0

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dan-Hughes/100003268726139 Dan Hughes

    How ya doin how ya doin how ya doin does this sound familiar? it does to me like the adult children in th assisted living who can’t afford a hearing aid . Yea they can’t cook a microwave egg, but look at the brightside i went to PIR to see Killacycle running A123 power, Tesla Motors was there some slumming with me at PIR

    • barry sorento

      I’m going to start a new car company. I need 5 Billion dollars (what the hell, I might as well ask for all I can), I’ll have 50 people working in my office @ 100,000. each, I’ll have 20 people handling the advertising @ 75,000. each, I’ll have 40 design engineers working on the car @ 125,000. each, I’ll farm out the manufacturing of the parts once I come up with a plan, and I’ll have 20 illegal immigrants at the assembly plant putting the parts together. nWe plan to sellu00a01 million cars a year @ 50,000. each, less a 20,000. goverment tax credit, less 10,000 energy credit.nu00a0u00a0@c71ae02577574ae37d44c4d1d2a5416d:disqusu00a0I’ll have thousands of, oooops, hundreds of jobs to offer as long as I get government subsidy. I’ll probably go out of business in 2 years though.u00a0Every new vehicle made (if one is made) will contain a plaque on the dash advising the owner that it their vehicleu00a0has been manufactured at a cost of 1,000,000. each in tax payers money. nSpecial license plates will also be on eachu00a0vehicle, “vote Obama 2012, bend over for another 4 years”.u00a0u00a0u00a0

      • SorentoSorento

        Oooh, post this again. Barry Sorento loves seeing his clever words.  He spent a lot of time writing this. Oooh.  Barry Sorento Barry Sorento
        I’m going to start a new car company. I need 5 Billion dollars (what the hell, I might as well ask for all I can), I’ll have 50 people working in my office @ 100,000. each, I’ll have 20 people handling the advertising @ 75,000. each, I’ll have 40 design engineers working on the car @ 125,000. each, I’ll farm out the manufacturing of the parts once I come up with a plan, and I’ll have 20 illegal immigrants at the assembly plant putting the parts together. 
        We plan to sell 1 million cars a year @ 50,000. each, less a 20,000. goverment tax credit, less 10,000 energy credit.
           I’ll have thousands of, oooops, hundreds of jobs to offer as long as I get government subsidy. I’ll probably go out of business in 2 years though. Every new vehicle made (if one is made) will contain a plaque on the dash advising the owner that it their vehicle has been manufactured at a cost of 1,000,000. each in tax payers money. 
        Special license plates will also be on each vehicle, “vote Obama 2012, bend over for another 4 years”. 

  • barry sorento

    I’m going to start a new car company. I need 5 Billion dollars (what the hell, I might as well ask for all I can), I’ll have 50 people working in my office @ 100,000. each, I’ll have 20 people handling the advertising @ 75,000. each, I’ll have 40 design engineers working on the car @ 125,000. each, I’ll farm out the manufacturing of the parts once I come up with a plan, and I’ll have 20 illegal immigrants at the assembly plant putting the parts together. nWe plan to sellu00a01 million cars a year @ 50,000. each, less a 20,000. goverment tax credit, less 10,000 energy credit.nu00a0u00a0@c71ae02577574ae37d44c4d1d2a5416d:disqusu00a0I’ll have thousands of, oooops, hundreds of jobs to offer as long as I get government subsidy. I’ll probably go out of business in 2 years though.u00a0Every new vehicle made (if one is made) will contain a plaque on the dash advising the owner that it their vehicleu00a0has been manufactured at a cost of 1,000,000. each in tax payers money. nSpecial license plates will also be on eachu00a0vehicle, “vote Obama 2012, bend over for another 4 years”.u00a0u00a0u00a0

  • http://www.facebook.com/keith.b.rosenberg Keith B. Rosenberg

    A victim of reality. Only the richest could afford a car costing that much. Make an electric car for $5,000 and you might have something.