Yes, You Want This Car – Tesla Roadster

A few reasons:

1. The Tesla Roadster does 0-100 km/h in 4 seconds
2. It has a limited top speed of 220 km/h
3. It does an effective 50 km per litre
4. The Tesla Motor company is owned by Elon Musk, a South African.
5. Like all things you want, you can’t afford it. It will be launching later this year and costs a $100,000 US.
6. Surprise: It’s an electric car. Zero emissions.

The only drawback is that it only does about 400 km per charge and takes 3.5 hours to fully recharge. What’s revolutionary about the Tesla Roadster is that a bunch of Geek Rebels (mostly software engineers) in Silicon Valley decided they would build a really cool car. Forget fuel cells, hydrogen, hybrids etc… The most advanced battery technology available today has been entirely driven by laptop and cellphone sales.

Essentially, they rigged together a bunch of Li-Ion laptop batteries and created a supercar. These guys are awesome!

The supercar is of course a fantastic way to build a name. They do intend to release a 4-door sedan in 2010 that will cost about $30,000. Still a bit outside of my budget, but maybe they’d sell the drivetrain to Bajaj and I could get an upgrade for my scooter.   

Update: The electric drivetrain (including ‘engine’ etc) only has 17 moving parts, compared to more than 200 parts in a typical 4-cylinder drivetrain. No oil, no petrol filter, no air filter, no oil filter, no fanbelt. This thing is cheap to maintain! It’s also manufactured by Lotus, so no rickety backyard manufacturing.

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