Every time automakers try to close the distance between their electric models and those of Tesla, the latter responds by launching new and more exclusive models. With its excellent battery technology and electric systems, Tesla seems untouchable at the top of the electric vehicles segment. The automaker is also building a multi-billion dollar battery factory which hints of a better future meaning other automakers need to work extra hard to come close to its “green” automobiles.
The Tesla aims to increase its sales to a half a million units annually by 2020. To achieve this, the automaker is looking to diversify its fleet. The 2020 Tesla Roadster is one of the vehicles meant to achieve this objective. Others are 2016 Tesla Model X (a mid-sized SUV), 2017 Tesla Model 3 (a small sedan) and a compact SUV yet to be named. Read along to find out what the second-generation Tesla Roadster promises to deliver:
2020 Tesla Roadster Exterior
Unlike the first generation Roadster which was based on the Lotus Elise platform, the 2020 Roadster will be designed from scratch. According to the automaker, the model will be based on the “Gen 3” platform which underpins the new Model 3. Tesla has not released any photo or rendering of this vehicle. Nonetheless, our engineers and designers have come up with the following rendering based on the available information:
At the front, the vehicle will likely adopt the Model S cues. It is likely to feature a chromed grille flanked by sharp headlights. Its hood will also be similar to the Model S complete with two ridges running from its headlights to the windshield. At the rear, the vehicle will sport creases below its shoulder line. The rear bumper will be mounted slightly higher for a slightly raised ground clearance level. The rear will also feature 2 bulges that pop up to act as the rear seatbacks and headrests.
All this is pure rendering based on the current design language of the automaker. This could change by the time the model hits the streets since 4 years is a long time in the automobile industry considering the dynamic change in technology the sector experiences. The upcoming Model 3 will give us more insight as to what the Roadster will look like.
2020 Tesla Roadster Interior
Though we don’t know how the cabin of the 202 Tesla Roadster will look like, we are sure it will be luxurious and adequately equipped technology-wise. Going by the first generation of the Roadster, expect an excellent interior design complete with premium Nappa leather on seats, door panels and on the dash. Aluminum, polished zinc and carbon-fiber will also make their way into its cabin.
Expect a huge screen mounted on the center console. The screen will be used to control an advanced infotainment system with Bluetooth connectivity, Smartphone integration, Wi-Fi connectivity and satellite navigation among others.
The 2020 Tesla Roadster will also improve on the Model S autonomous features. Features on the current Model S include radar and sonar systems which enable the vehicle to drive itself when switched to the ‘autopilot’ mode. We expect Tesla to advance this technology to enable the car to do much more than Model S currently does.
Engine Specs and Performance
No one knows what power-train Tesla will use under the hood of the 2020 Roadster. However, Tesla announced that the Roadster will go beyond the Model S in terms of acceleration and top speed. Tesla said that the Roadster would get the “maximum plaid” mode which supersedes the “Ludicrous” mode featured on the Model S. With the Ludicrous mode, the model S runs from standstill to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds. Since the “maximum plaid” mode supersedes Ludicrous mode, it is safe to assume that the next-gen Roadster will hit 0-60 mph in less than 2.5 seconds.
At this speed, no electric model will be close to it. In fact, the Roadster will be among the fastest cars in the world. It will be at the same level with the likes of gasoline-sipping Porsche 918 Spyder which bolts to 60 mph from standstill in 2.4 seconds.
To achieve this objective, Tesla needs a very powerful motor and battery pack. Currently, the 90 kWh battery pack that powers the P90D is the only likely option. Most likely, the Roadster will feature an electric motor per axle. Lest I forget, the automaker is also looking to increase the Roadster’s range to 400 miles. Tesla has an excellent battery research and development team so I am sure they are working something out for the Roadster if they haven’t already.
Price and release date
It is way too early to start talking about the Roadster’s price. What is sure though is that the model will be more expensive than the Model S. Considering the model S has a starting price of around $125,000, I won’t be surprised if the Roadster attracts a price tag of over $ 150,000.
As for the release date, the model might arrive sometimes in 2019. However, going by the history of Tesla of delaying things, the model could even arrive later in 2020.
At this level, you might be tempted to think that Tesla, the market leader in electric and hybrid drive-trains will be alone at the top but no, Detroit Electric is not far behind with their 2016 Detroit Electric SP:01. Audi, the German automaker is also close behind with their Audi R8 E-Tron. By 2020, a couple of other automakers will also have launched their own electric sports cars like Porsche Mission E Concept .