Tesla is believed to be working on a new Roadster for an expected launch in 2019. In continuation of Tesla referencing the movie ‘Spaceballs’ for its performance modes, like ‘Ludicrous mode’, CEO Elon Musk said that the automaker is reserving the ‘Maximum Plaid’ mode for the next generation Tesla Roadster.
We haven’t heard much about this new version of Tesla’s first vehicle since Musk’s comment, but last week a company representative revealed a few more information, although vague, about the upcoming sports car.
While giving a presentation at an electronics trade fair in Gothenburg, Sweden, Tesla’s Nordic Countries Manager Peter Bardenfleth-Hansen commented (via IDG in Swedish):
“We would have loved to build more, but if no one other than you would be listening right now, then I’d probably tell you that we will manufacture it again. It will look a little different, a little faster and a little bigger”.
When Tesla first built the Roadster, it was based on Lotus gliders and therefore not really built from the ground up as an electric vehicle or by Tesla.
The next generation Roadster is expected to be built on Tesla’s third-generation platform, like the Model 3.
I wouldn’t expect to hear much more about the Roadster for a while as Tesla is putting all its efforts and resources toward bringing the Model 3 to market on time and in volumes.
Independently, the company is also working on a retrofit for current Roadster owners. The upgrade is called ‘Roadster 3,0’ and features a new battery pack with LG cells, a new aero kit designed to reduce drag, and new tires with lower rolling resistance.
The upgrade was promised to Roadster owners long ago as a token of appreciation for having supported Tesla in its early days, but as of now, it doesn’t look like anyone received the retrofit and only the battery pack was made available for reservation on Tesla’s website.
The new 70 kWh pack will be hand-built at low volume and Tesla doesn’t aim to make a profit on the upgrade, which will cost $29,000 including labor. The automaker manufactured about 2,500 roadster through its production run between 2008 and 2012.
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