The New Tesla Roadster Aims To Upstage Top-Rated Supercars

Tesla Roadster

DEC 20 2017 BY EVANNEX 81


The Tesla Semi may revolutionize trucking, but more importantly, it makes a stylish hauler for the fastest production car ever built.

When Tesla rolled out the Model S P100 with Ludicrous Mode in 2015, its 0-60 time of 2.8 seconds made it the quickest sedan on the market. But there are still a couple of faster cars out there. Those who simply must have the fastest take a pass on the Tesla and pay much more to gain those all-important tenths of a second.

No longer. Tesla’s new Roadster, an all-wheel-drive EV that can reach 60 mph in a head-snapping 1.9 seconds, on the way to a top speed of over 250 mph, will soon make every one of the world’s famous supercars look like an overpriced Prius. And it will start at $200,000.

A recent article in Bloomberg delivers the eulogies. Ferrari’s latest and greatest, the LaFerrari, features a 6.3-liter V12 engine and an electric motor, delivers 949 horsepower and a 0-60 time of 2.6 seconds, and sports a $1.4-million price tag.

In other words, as Bloomberg puts it, “LaFerrari owners pay an extra $1.2 million dollars for the opportunity to be beaten by the new Roadster.”

The Wall Street Journal recently reviewed the brand-new 2018 Porsche 911 GT2, which gives you 0-60 in 2.7 seconds for $325,250, and asked a quick question:

“Is this the fastest street car ever?” A few hours later, the Roadster rolled out of its trailer and answered that query in the negative.

*This article comes to us courtesy of EVANNEX (which also makes aftermarket Tesla accessories). Authored by Charles Morris.

Tesla Roadster

The new Tesla Roadster on the night of its unveiling (Instagram: gabevega)

The $1.3-million McLaren P1 hits 60 in 2.7 seconds; the $847,000 Porsche 918 Spyder makes it in 2.6 seconds. In either case, an extra hundred grand or so can buy you a few more tenths, but not enough to beat the $200,000 Roadster. What about the new generation of ultra-exclusive “hypercars?” Aston Martin’s Valkyrie and Mercedes-AMG’s Project One each cost about $3 million, and each is slower than the Roadster.

Digital Trends memorialized a few more victims. The Dodge Challenger SRT Demon is powered by an 840-horsepower Hemi V8 and comes standard with only one seat. Its 0-60 time of 2.3 seconds and quarter-mile time of 9.65 seconds are not slow – unless you’re comparing them to the Roadster. The Ferrari 812 Superfast, McLaren 720S, and Lamborghini Aventador S all take about a second longer than the Tesla Roadster to reach 60 mph, and none can quite make it to 250 mph.

There’s nothing on 4 wheels that can beat the new Roadster on the drag strip, but there may be a supercar or two that can best its top speed. The Koenigsegg Agera RS, a Swedish supercar, has been clocked at 277 mph, and Texan carmaker Hennessey claims that its 1,600-horsepower Venom F5 can reach 301 mph.

The Bugatti Chiron is no sluggard – it edges out the Roadster with a stated top speed of 261 mph, although the Tesla has it beat in just about every other category (see chart below). Of course, those extra 11 mph don’t come cheap – the Chiron sells for $3 million. So, as InsideEVs points out, for the price of the Chiron, you could buy Roadsters for everyone in your family, and maybe new houses too.

Tesla Roadster

The Tesla Roadster and Bugatti Chiron go head-to-head (Source: InsideEVs via Imgur / NIGHTWOLF)

Silly toys for boys with more money than sense? Not entirely. As Bloomberg points out, the speed crown matters to automakers. One of the reasons automakers sponsor racing teams is to test new technology in the most demanding environments. Anti-lock brakes, turbochargers, and modern suspensions are just a few of the features that made their debut on the racetrack before finding highly practical applications in everyday vehicles.

Speedy sports models also serve as “halo cars,” which attract buyers to a brand. The punters come into the showroom to admire the latest Mustang or Corvette, and most leave in an SUV or a cheap sedan.

Tesla’s original Roadster, and later the Ludicrous Model S, have made important contributions as halo models for the entire EV industry. Pre-Tesla, most car buyers thought of EVs as pokey golf carts. Once people understand that an electric car can not only hold its own with the best gas-burning sports cars but in fact can leave every one of them in the dust, they begin to realize that an EV might serve them well as a daily driver (or as a city bus, a delivery truck or a semi-tractor).

Porsche, Rimac, and others are developing their own electric supercars, and the Roadster will now be the benchmark they’re trying to beat. This healthy competition is bound to accelerate the wider auto industry’s move to electrification – and that’s what Tesla is all about.


Written by: Charles Morris

*Editor’s Note: EVANNEX, which also sells aftermarket gear for Teslas, has kindly allowed us to share some of its content with our readers. Our thanks go out to EVANNEX, Check out the site here.

Categories: Tesla

Tags: ,

Leave a Reply

81 Comments on "The New Tesla Roadster Aims To Upstage Top-Rated Supercars"

newest oldest most voted

I was talking to a relative over T-giving who is actually a bit hostile towards EV’s, who brought up Tesla. (I know better than to bring up EV’s at holiday family gatherings…)

While he said his bit, his early teen son out of nowhere enthusiastically proclaimed “I want a Roadster!!” I had to choke down a laugh as his dad’s eyes narrowed in annoyance. The Roadster is working already before it is even built. It is shaping the next generation’s desires and expectations for what they want when they can drive.

LOL great story.

The kids get it. Luckily they are next in line and not their parents.

” (I know better than to bring up EV’s at holiday family gatherings…)”

I don’t even bother telling anyone I got my Model S. I was talking to an old work friend over the phone who is a car and motorcycle nut and I told him I got MS cuz I figured he’d be interested.

His response was:
“Oh so you’re driving a coal car.”

Just shoot me.

Isn’t it funny that most of the folks who use the term “coal car” as a derogatory term, are the exact same folks who are openly pro-coal? And that the only time they wring their hands over something using electricity from coal is just for EV’s? You don’t hear them talk about “coal refrigerators” or “coal computers”.

You would think they would be happy at the idea of cars that use coal as a source of even just a small portion of their energy. Instead they use it as a line of attack. There is just no making some people happy.

I have noticed this same irony. And it goes deeper than that too. I’ve noticed many of the people spreading lies about EVs and hybrids being bad for the environment, are in fact not environmentalists themselves. So if their sole reason for NOT buying an EV is because they believe it is bad for the environment, then why are they driving a dually pickup truck as their commuter vehicle instead of a small gas powered vehicle with high gas mileage, which should be better for the environment. Oh… Translation, they really don’t give a crap about the environment, they just need some justification to make our choice look silly.

Right, it’s just self-justification. If they did not feel, down deep, guilty about all the pollution their gasmobiles spew out, then they wouldn’t feel any need for self-justification.

By telling themselves that EVs are “really” just as polluting as gasmobiles, they can assuage their consciences. It’s a comforting lie, just like science deniers who deny that human activity is contributing significantly to global warming and the ongoing current mass extinction of animals and plants.

“Oh so you’re driving a coal car.”

The proper response to that, here in California, is “if you can show me where the coal fired electrical plant is here”…

One of the coal plants here in Michigan just made news by announcing their shutting down in 2025, and starting to build a new efficient nat-gas plant + renewables. That’s 7 years away, but I’ll take it. Anything to clean up the grid. We still have about 20 coal plants left in the state, but they should all be gone by 2030 if the Beyond Coal campaign works out.


For holiday family gatherings, everyone can have roadster in the family and still have money to invest in market.

Has there been any mention of Autopilot or any of those capabilities on the new roadster? I could see it being a no as it’s supposed to be a super car and therefore weight reduction where possible is important. The flip side being that Autopilot is one of Tesla’s differentiators and I would think they would want to offer the premium features in their most expensive car.

What weight does Tesla’s semi-self-driving systems add to its cars? (“Autopilot” itself is just software, weighing nothing, so I presume you are talking about more than just that.)

There are several hardware sensors, but I think those are all small and lightweight. I doubt Tesla is going to omit them from their new “supercar” just to save, what, a pound or two?

Of course one could argue that those who buy a supercar want it for the sheer joy of driving, so who wants it to be self-driving or even semi-self driving? But that’s a silly argument. Just because someone who buys a “supercar” would want to drive it himself some of the time, doesn’t mean he doesn’t want to have the option of letting the car drive itself when he’s tired, or he’s been drinking, or whatever.

There should be >100 lbs in cameras and brackets/wiring/processing unit I would think? I could be weigh off though! (heh see what I did there??/dad joke)

I just think it odd that there hasn’t really been any mention of it that I have seen, unless perhaps it is just assumed at this point?

I suppose bragging rights are one thing, but I’m a bit miffed that I could afford the original Roadster (and it was mostly a fun and educational 4 years), but I could never afford the new one.

Hopefully, since I like having an electric sporty convertible for the summertime, the Mazda Miata will eventually have an EV drivetrain.

Just to put things in to perspective the 1st Gen roadster came in at what $100k back in 2008? The 2nd Gen is expected to come in at $200k in 2020.

That’s a doubling of MSRP in 12 years which per the rule of 72 means that it’s only a 6% increase every year over those 12 years.

That seems extremely reasonable to me. I would suspect that most people who could afford a $100k car back in 2008 should be able to afford a $200k car in 2020 assuming their finances stayed relatively the same.

They may not want to (heck, I remembmer my grandparents complaining about how much things used to cost because it was only a nickel when they were a kid) but value wise they’re pretty comparable and with the 2nd gen Roadster if things actually materialize like they’ve been quoted you’re getting a heck of a lot more capable car for really the same amount of $!

Yes, but inflation has been sitting at historic lows, around 2%, for years.
So not quite the same as 100k Roadster.

Yea, the base $109K Roadster doesn’t quite add up to $200K by 2020. Even if you go with the $128,500 starting price of the Roadster Sport, according to the CPI calculator, it is about the same in 2020 future dollars as ~$165K.

With that said, I think you are getting much more than just $35K worth of upgrades between the Roadster Sport and the 2020 Roadster. If you look at it in terms of inflation, the upgrades definitely crush inflation. At 200K in 2020, the upgrades will be so cheap after inflation that it is hard to argue that it is a bad value compared to the original Roadster Sport.

For the features I want in a Sporty Convertible, the original Roadster was far closer, and in my opinion, the car had much more beautiful styling – but then it had those Sleek Lotus Lines. The new roadster looks to me like a cross between the “S” and “3” – not sporty at all, but to each his own.

I’ve heard nothing about the handling of the car – of course the original roadster wasn’t all that great until I changed the tires anyway (mostly due to the top heavy battery), and the ONLY feature I like about the new one is its 620 mile range.

But since I’m priced out of that market, hopefully someone will make a less powerful, more affordable one.

That “Detroit Electric” is quite a bit cheaper, (especially with no options), but it doesn’t even have the range of the original roadster, and it can’t be sold in the US anyway.


Someone does make a less powerful, more affordable electric sports car: The Tesla Model 3.


That’s a joke. I like the Model 3 from what I’ve seen of it (I like my ELR much better – no offense), but no way would I consider either car in the league of the original Roadster for ‘fun-ness’.

I at least figure you DRIVE some sort of car so that you can at least have some familiarity with them. Other ‘experts’ I’m not so certain.

Bill, it seems to me that you were less than impressed with your Tesla Roadster, based on other comments you have left, so I imagine that biases your view. But I’m also sure you have a reasonably good understanding of Tesla as a previous owner, which I have no claim to.
Forgetting all the inflation claims and what not, if the Roadster 2 gets into production then it is comparable to other vehicles it aims to compete with. The original Roadster was an example of what an EV could be, to prove that they don’t have to be golf carts, and I think everyone agrees that aim was achieved. Now the new Roadster is competing with the opposition, and there are many vehicles it is competing with. Some will be cheaper, but most/many will be dearer, so $200k has to be viewed in that context.

There is always the 2018 fortwo Electric Drive Cabrio

“Hopefully, since I like having an electric sporty convertible for the summertime, the Mazda Miata will eventually have an EV drivetrain.”

Right about the same time Trump tweets are boring and he learns to levitate…

IMHO, autopilot hardware would add little significant weight and considerable actual safety, so …….

When it comes to supercars its not just about the numbers. Otherwise, most would buy a Corvette that outperforms many supercars. If I’ve been dreaming about a hand built Ferrari or Porsche where I can pick the types of leather, wood, custom colors, etc… a Tesla is not a replacement. Also driving up in a $1 million car versus a $250k makes a statement even sitting still. If you have the money you’re not discount shopping.

Agreed. Rolex v Sekonda.

So have a custom interior installed. The $750,000 dollar difference between a the Roadster and a million dollar car you mentioned should certainly be enough to trim the inside in 24K gold if you just wanted to make a statement about excess spending just for spending’s sake.

LOL! Even with the added weight it would likely STILL beat many of those other cars in acceleration!

Just the inside? Inside and out.

I understand what you are saying and that some people may think that way. But myself, if the roadster were available for purchase (it isn’t yet) and I saw somebody drive up in a brand new multi-million dollar super car, I would simply think they are a fool who has more money than brains. To be honest, I think that now too. There comes a point where the price of a car exceeds the production cost by an order of magnitude, and that’s just silly because you are paying for a brand name, not a product.

“…I would simply think they are a fool who has more money than brains.”

Personally I have the same reaction, but clearly those who display conspicuous consumption don’t care if some people react that way. Also quite clearly conspicuous consumption does usually improve someone’s social standing and the ability to attract potential mates.

Humans are not rational animals.

Don’t think you’ll find fine wood and leather in a Ferrari, and they are not really comfortable. If you want fine wood and leather splurge on an Italian sofa.

Wood isn’t “comfortable”?!?! Nobody is asking you to sit on the interior wood trim!

Both leather and wood interior trim choices are available from Ferarri’s “Tailor Made” shop (link below, with many photos).

And speaking as someone with a woodworking hobby, if I was rich enough to afford a supercar I certainly would want it to have some wood trim in the interior!

Here you go 🙂

Forget the liquid vs. paste wax argument. Enter the teak oil vs. tung oil argument.

It admittedly looks great but seeing as it’s not even close to being released I don’t see exactly how it just shut down
the worlds baddest supercars.

Any word on how long you can actually press the new Roadster until it enters reduced power mode? I didn’t think so, but when has actual facts ever stopped these guys from putting out the usual BS.

What reduced power mode?

Well, they drove it for hours, shutting down every other super-car that exists.
Is that not enough for you?
I mean others do concepts that just rotate around sitting on a platform, not give people test rides.

At the release event, they hot-lapped the demo cars doing full throttle repeated 0-70’s and 0-80’s one rider after another every few minutes for a couple of hours.

The NIO EP9 EV supercar broke the production record at Nurburgring and didn’t have to go into any reduced power mode. It has the proper racing battery management system that the Tesla Model S which is a family sedan doesn’t.

I’m sure that part of the $200,000 price tag will include a proper racing battery management system and motor cooling to allow it to perform like the NIO EP9.

I see that the usual serial anti-Tesla trolls flew and DJ are busy casting FUD and shade on Tesla.

You guys must be pretty bitter people!

You must be a F’ing idiot to think that. I mean seriously…

You should know, after all you look in the mirror everyday.

Yes, you very clearly are bitter and jealous over Tesla’s growing success, and perhaps see it as a personal threat to your income. Why else would you keep up your campaign of serial Tesla hater posts?

The last person that bit me remarked that I tasted bitter…

Must be all those jalapeno burgers…

With a side of Tesla infused Nuremberg (Onion) Rings.

May the Tesla Roadster 2.0, hold the production (triple digit numbers) N.R. EV lap record, at least above the Porsche Mission E.

I’m not bitter at all. I just don’t blindly believe everything Tesla shows is the second coming of Christ. People buy cars at different price points for many different reasons.

Psst, Evannex. People actually use cars on “race tracks”.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

The next person you see driving a Ferrari or Lambo G on the streets, ask them if they ever took it on the oval track.

I asked 5 of them and none ever have. Small sample but I think it’s a good representation.

Psssst pjwood1, very few Ferrari owners drive on race tracks.

Are timed events not in a straight line out of the definition of supercar, then?

Got it.

You seem to have jumped to the conclusion, before any evidence is in, that the Roadster Gen II won’t be able to perform for an extended period in a road race or track race.

Some comments posted here give me hope that you’re going to be surprised. 🙂

Comparing shipping cars with a future car, nor with any lap time data, seems nonsensical.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Sh1t man, some cars win “Awards” when they haven’t hit the streets!

0-400kph-0, That’s the benchmark for a supercar,
36.44 seconds is the mark to beat

The “benchmark”” for a supercar is whatever the manufacturer deems it to be. The Bugatti Chiron’s forte is straight line speed. The Acure NSX’s is how good it is in the twisties.

The news here is simple: The electric drive train is superior to the internal combustion drive train, in all aspects except one. ICs are noisier.

People with money buy brand name recognition and exclusivity, and, often form over function. In a humorous sort of way, overpricing is a way of creating exclusive items only the Rich can afford, even when, in the case of automobiles, they are not necessarily better performing products.

You forgot the well known fact that you can drive ICEs harder for longer than you currently can EVs.

When all you’re doing is trying to impress your date or friend on the occasional 0-60 run it’s not a problem but on an actual race course it is. I do believe that’s something they’ll solve but when is the actual question.

Pretty much EVERY production car fails with prolonged hard driving on a racing track, with expensive consequences. I’ve seen Bugattis and Ferraris blow heads and cooling systems within a few laps. People buy them thinking they are racing cars, they are not! Passenger ICE cars also fail with such driving. As a mechanic I see ICE vehicles seldom pass 400000km mark before engine uneconomical to continue repairing. Some do, most don’t. ICE Sports cars are worse. EVs are showing they last longer. From what I see the racing track argument is FUD for all vehicles, the specs get attention which drives sales of other vehicles. Tesla is doing what pretty much every manufacturer does, yet people are calling them out for it. Double standards all the way.

Race on Sunday, sell on Monday. Racing sells cars. Of course the family sedan won’t hold up in a race but people like to buy cars that look like winners and some of that race technology (like seat belts) does make it into the family sedan.

It gets so tiresome thanks for putting that crying baby to bed. Though it will get up and cry again.

Oh bullsh*t! You’re merely latching on to the older Tesla Model S theme and running with it! With proper cooling, electric motors and battery packs survive entire races in both fully electric and hybrid race cars. I haven’t seen anyone attempt to take a P100D around the Nurburgring yet and I’m pretty sure the NIO EP9 didn’t overheat in its record run around the ring.

True dat, about the cool NIO EP9, and the record lap at the “Nurburgring”!

After Tesla lets someone drive the prototype Roadster Gen II on the Nürburgring “Green Hell” race track, DJ will have to find something else to whine about. But don’t worry, it won’t take him long. 🙄

It’s not just about going 0 to 60. You also have to be good at going around corners and going long distances at high speeds without breaking down. Tesla is going to have to start winning road course races against gas cars before people will really start taking Tesla performance seriously.

If you’re referring to ALL people, yeah. But, 0-60 in 1.9 seconds and the quarter mile in less than 9, will garner sufficient attention in its own right.

You’re joking right?

“Tesla is going to have to start winning road course races against gas cars before people will really start taking Tesla performance seriously.”

Do we really need to point out that millions of people watching Tesla drag race videos quite clearly show you’re wrong?

Are you actually trying to convince us that Tesla’s 0-60 performance times have not convinced some people — a lot of people — to buy the Model S and the Model X?

Amazing as it may seem, Texas FFE, not everyone is as biased against Tesla as you are!

Why would ANYONE pay $1 million for a CAR?

That’s why god made airplanes. For 1 million, an airplane will smoke any of those cars including the Tesla, and do it all the time, legally, and in a straight line.

Plus beat the traffic. To each his(her) own.

So many people here just don’t get it. It’s not about raw performance. It’s about prestige, exclusivity, looks (sorry but Teslas are just not that good looking), something that’s built by hand, etc. It’s exactly the same reason people pay ridiculous prices for a Rolex when a cheap Casio is a much better watch in every practical sense.

I’d be interested to hear what you think IS a good looking sports if you’re thinking the Roadster isn’t! Sounds like your characterization of what is actually a sports car is pretty exclusive.

New username troll posting anti-Tesla FUD, probably an existing username shill, shorter, or hater posting under a new username.

Lots of that going on here.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Let’s all change our names!

Change to what?



That would be fun, but the moderators frown on people posting under multiple screen names in the same discussion thread.

Otherwise I’d be happy to post the following:

* * * * *

DJ (Improved Version)

WOW! It’s so great that Tesla has the best looking cars in the world, and that the new Roadster is going to blow away all the competition, not only on the roads but also on race tracks! I’m just ecstatic that Tesla has solved the overheating problem, and can run at top speed for extended periods even under racing conditions!

Go Tesla!

“…Teslas are just not that good looking”

You are of course entitled to your opinion, but you are not entitled to state it as if it’s fact.

I personally think the original Tesla Model S (nosecone and all) looks better than any other car on the road. Period.

I do like the look of that old “S” from the front, with the “catfish” grille.

I don’t care for that new ‘chicken lips’ thing at all. But, to each his own.

Owner of Bugatti Chiron should pray god in every red traffic light that a Roadster should not stop next to him/her.

If a Roadster does, then it will leave the Chiron, way behind at the light turning green and a driver of some other slower car on the way will just laugh and feel happy that he did not waste $3 million at the Chiron nonsense gas guzzler.

“THE NEW TESLA ROADSTER JUST SHUT DOWN THE WORLD’S BADDEST SUPERCARS” Really? I guess I missed the news that all the Ferraris and Lamborghinis and Alfa Romeos and Bugattis in the world stopped running. /snark Hey, it’s great that Tesla’s prototype shows it will be the fastest production car in the world, bar none. But the mere existence of a prototype Tesla Roadster Mark II is not going to put a single on of those specialty high-end sports car makers out of business. We can hope that some or all of the gasmobile “supercar” makers will eventually start making EV sports cars of their own. And yes,it’s reasonable to expect that some of those specialty auto makers will eventually, over the next decade or two, fail to survive the EV revolution, just as some of the more mainstream auto makers will. But I’d like to make a plea for the end to all this hype. Selling cars isn’t like professional sports, where at the end of every year one team is called the champion and everybody else is labeled a “loser”. Even when Tesla does put its new Roadster into production, we can be sure that Ferrari and Lamborghini and… Read more »

I want to see the Roadster & the Zombie 222 Mustang race.


Where did I put my British to American dictionary? 🙂