Engineering Explained Explores New Tesla Roadsters Insane Performance – Video


7,376 lb-ft (10,000 Nm) of torque? This means nothing.

The race for the quickest production car in the world has gone crazy in the last couple of months. First we saw the Dodge Demon and Tesla Model S P100DL, then came the Hennessey Venom F5, and finally the second generation Tesla Roadster. With all these ridiculously fast cars in mind, we can’t stop wondering – what is really possible and where’s the acceleration limit for a production car?

When we ask ourselves such philosophical questions, we always look at the Engineering Explained YouTube channel for help. And, thankfully, there’s a new video, which sheds some light on how fast the new Tesla Roadster is really going to be.

New Tesla Roadster

And what about the Roadsters claimed 7,376 pound-feet (10,000 Newton-meters) of torque? According to the video, it basically means nothing until we know how much horsepower the car makes. It’s going to have a lot of torque, it’s going to be quick – we all know that, but this number is nothing to get super excited about until it’s actually put into context.

Tesla also says the new Roadster is going to be the fastest production car in the world. It’s a bold statement that depends on so many factors. The bottom line, according to Engineering Explained, is that tires need to get better. Ultimately, acceleration comes down to tires technology – as it improves, we’ll see 0-60 mph (0-96 kph) times go down, but if it remains the same we won’t see much improvement, no matter how much power you throw at a vehicle.

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Source: Engineering Explained

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41 Comments on "Engineering Explained Explores New Tesla Roadsters Insane Performance – Video"

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The Tesla Roadster will be built on a new skateboard platform (with the 200 kWh battery pack) in 2020.

Will Tesla use that same skateboard platform (with the 200 kWh battery pack) for other more practical Tesla EV models?

Imagine a second generation Tesla Model S with a 200 kWh battery pack in 2022.

I’m almost willing to bet that they have that new Solid State Glass Battery that John B Goodenough ~((Inventor of the Lithium battery))~ Has been Developing and is very close with Tesla. It’s been said to pack 3 to 5 times more Punch than the Lithium Ion…I wouldn’t put it past them to put a few of the Glass Solid State Batteries together for Experimental Use ..The Glass Solid state is said to debut in cars around 2020 which is about the same timing ..

So as a gut check, the nio ep9 which has 1MW of power and 4600ft lbs of torque at the wheels with single speed gearing has a slower 0-60mph than this roadster and lower top end… So either the roadster has some even more absurd power like 2MW or they figured out how to do a multispeed EV gearbox that shifts into 2nd gear after the 1/4 mile. Knowing tesla they would call it hyperdrive instead of overdrive.

Power and torque are not the limiters. Maximum traction and mass of the car are the limiting variables.
Traction, given street tires, only depends on wheel size and mass. Mass has a lower bound set by battery size and plausible specific energy

If you want a 0-60 of 1.9s and a top speed of over 250mph all with one single gear, you’ll either need really powerful motors with low gearing, an insane field weakening range, or two gears.

If the P100D was geared to reach 250mph, it would take 3.5s to 60, instead of 2.2.

Other ways to achieve it would be higher torque to get maximum power at lower rpm or higher maximum rpm.

It all depends on the weight. To hit 1.9 on street tires, you’d have to be insanely light – implausibly so with the claimed size of the battery.

And yet they have prototypes that do it anyways. Inconceivable, eh?

You actually believe the prototypes had 200 kWh batteries in them?

Wait, of course YOU do.

A P100DL S can do 0-60 in 2.3 seconds. A modified P100DL drivetrain could easily do 1.9 seconds in a much lighter Roadster.

LOL!! The old pics or it didn’t happen meme!!

Yea, and I bet those sheep on the side of the road were only sheered on one side, and on the other side they still have their curls.

Are you under the mistaken believe that Tesla CAN’T build a 200 kWh battery? And that Tesla doesn’t have access to test cells that are more powerful that what they currently put into their production cars?

So sorry your willful blindness leads you to conspiracy nuttery around every corner. Maybe you should build your own rocket to fly into space just to check and see if the world is really flat, and that there isn’t a conspiracy by Elon to lie about the earth being round.

Downforce, or gravity X mass, increases traction or friction. So, there’s some offsetting gain that factors against the inertial loss of adding weight.

A long time ago, Insideevs featured an article about a go-kart that had fans through its floor, pointing up. That’s downforce, in the same way a traveling F1 car can run upside down, before reaching top speed. I don’t think Telsa are doing anythink funky, here, but point is it isn’t all about “light”.

Because it is AWD the tire traction is less critical than suggested here.

Two speed gearbox seems reasonable to get acceleration plus high top end but there will likely be three or four motors located close to the wheel(s) each drives so multiple gearboxes?

The use of a 200+ kwh battery is interesting because the mass will reduce acceleration.

Cars like this have nothing to do with creating a more sustainable world.

Please make a good, compact and light economy car instead!

Hand of God Pushing Tesla Roadster Toy Car! How fast do you want to go, today?

Thew Roadster is God’s Hot Wheel.

Or so it says in the Book of Elon.

Splitting hair! This car costs a fraction of what other cars cost and does almost the same thing if not more. It will also drive by itself. That is the punch line. I hope that the boys at Tesla do not try to waste to much time trying to get as close as possible to breaking some Newton Laws of Motion. I prefer they get this level 5 working well first. We need to get rid of oil as fast as possible. I wish they can help us do that in 2.05 seconds. Or days, or weeks or even YEARS but let us put that as our target. See you in 2 years Saudi.

It’s quite disappointing to see an article here based on nothing but armchair engineers stating opinions as facts, and dismissing Tesla’s claims based on jumped-to conclusions rather than actual evidence.

They say there’s no way Tesla can overcome the limits of tire traction, to deliver 0-60 in 1.9 seconds?

Ridiculous. Maybe Tesla will put wide drag racer slicks on the rear wheels. Maybe Tesla will do what one Formula 1 race car did, and put powerful fans on the bottom of the car to create suction (and thus downforce) to increase traction. Maybe Tesla has come up with something new.

The point is that these armchair engineers don’t know what Tesla has done with the Roadster Mark II. To declare tire traction to be the limiting force is at best stating opinion as fact, and at worst is both myopic and flat wrong.

These engineers should try thinking outside the box; Tesla certainly has!

If you knew anything about racing at all you would realise that he has a point.

It doesn’t matter if a car is powered by electricity, gasoline or a fusion reactor. You can have a very light car with all the power in the world. At the end of the day the most important thing to go fast is tires. Even modified cars with ridiculous amounts of power can’t hit 0-60 in 1.9 seconds simply because they can’t put that power to ground.

Now I’m not saying it’s impossible maybe the Roadster 2.0 will ship with barely street legal racing tires and Tesla will come up with some mind blowing launch control system that can actually maximise power to the ground?

All he is saying is there is a lot more then simply having an electric AWD powertrain with lots of power to hit 0-60 in 1.9 seconds.

He may have a point but he has no facts.

Too many wannabe Youtube posters making empty useless videos about Tesla just to get hits.

Insideevs should not be posting them here.

Yet fanboys equally without any facts post Elon Musk propaganda as if it were written in stone. It’s perfectly possible that Elon Musk is simply talking BS. We don’t know until it has been verified by a 3rd party.

You can watch video after video from third parties of their test rides on youtube.

You losers just simply can’t accept the reality that Tesla builds amazing things that other car companies can’t or won’t.

As usual when someone says something you don’t like, but you have nothing to counter with, you attack the man instead of grappling with the arguments. His basic physics is correct. And he pointed out the limitations of the method he used to arrive at the 2.05 seconds limit.

It’s really sad to see someone who pretends to have the mindset of an engineer behave like this.


One commenter took an old car and got 0-60 in 1.8 seconds.

So this guy is saying that for $250,000 the car can’t go a bit slower?

Besides, all wheel drive helps with traction.

Must have been a slow news week for this guy.

The 1.9 seconds is for the base model….only $200,000. The $250,000 model will be faster.

Tesla Roadsters always increase in price from the time they are announced to the time the general public actually buys one. My “$89,000 Roadster” had a list price of $109,000 with zero options, which is the way I bought it, other than a separate transaction for a $750 converter J1772 cable.

Yes, I could have saved myself headaches by buying a $75 Chassis mount 32 ampere J1772 jack, but I wanted to keep the car pristine original. Turned out to be the right thing to do since I got more than the $750 expense of the adapter back on Resale, and wouldn’t have gotten nearly what I got for the car had the original TSL-01 connector been missing.

“With street legal tires”

With specialty gear you can go much faster. Top Fuel dragsters do it well under one second but they are not street legal.

The prototype was doing a pretty good impression of sub-2 seconds. Perhaps they were using gigantic, hidden magnets? LOL.

A 3500 lb car with unlimited traction needs about 750 hp to do sub-2. A Model 3 motor does >250 hp. The Roadster has 3 motors, so that’s 750 hp even if they’re boring little Model 3 units.

Roadster traction isn’t unlimited, of course, but it should be enough. Why?

1.9 seconds with rollout is about 2.2 total. That’s an average acceleration of 40 ft/sec^2 and a distance covered of 0.5*40*2.2*2.2 = 96.8 feet. Motor Trend recorded a 2014 Corvette stopping from 60-0 in 90 feet:

If today’s tires have enough traction to stop from 60 in 90 feet then 2020 tires should have enough to get to 60 in 96.8 feet. Amiright?

He lost credibility when he started talking Tesla current stationary battery weight (which use completely different battery cells than any Tesla car) to try and guestimate what completely different cutting edge cells would weigh.

There’s no significant weight difference between the two.

Source? We don’t even know what shape the cells are for the Roadster battery pack, much less their power density. But you ASSume you know they weight the same per kW they store?

You’ve just lost your credibility too.

Because they use pretty much the same structure and materials only in slightly different proportions.

Haha! You are funny, maybe involuntarily. The power pack uses Tesla’s best cells, the 2170s. Get a clue why don’t you!

With what chemistry and anode material? Are you suggesting that every battery Tesla tests with are identical to the ones they are currently building at the Gigafactory, just because they might share the same 21mm by 70mm format?

Now you are just being silly. 2170 is just a size. Not the actual battery specifications.

So was the prototype at the launch event doing 0-60 in 1.9sec? That was the impression i had looking at the later videos people posted.
I’ll never afford one, so it is a moot point for me, and really 1.9 – 2.5 who really cares? It’s still insanely quick!

The white zombie Datsun EV can do 0-60 in 1.8 seconds…
The Street Legal (ICE) Alpha Omega Nissan R 35 GTR can do 0–60 in 1.49 seconds…

Another overlooked aspect is that we know this thing will come with sticky street tires…Imagine if they put on LRR tires? Perhaps the range could be 700, 750 or even 800 miles of range…While most would never drive that far in a day, it allows one to drive 300-400 miles one day and back home a different day without needing to ever worry about charging…We’ve heard the story before when an EV shows up late to a gathering and demands everyone clear out the driveway so the EV can park in or in front of the garage to charge

Why are you guys even speculating when I’m sure your credentials don’t even come close to matching Musk or his engineers. You simply don’t know enough to make an objection. No? Then go build something prove me wrong.

“Ultimately, acceleration comes down to tires technology”

So… dragster times where cars accelerate under to 60mph under 2 seconds… that’s just bulls*** then?

Because there’s already EVs out there than can beat the so-far-mythical Tesla Roadster. They’re just custom-built.

Apparently you are a bit hard of hearing. As he explained, road legal tires, not power, are what limits acceleration times. He pointed out top fuel dragsters do the sprint in 0.8 seconds. They couldn’t however so that on road legal tires, regardless how powerful the engine.

As I’ve pointed out before, it would in fact be considerably better if they gave it only half as much battery!

How many gears needed for 250+ MPH, 3?