This post comes courtesy of former OC Metblogger Mike at Mike’s Daily Lockup. Enjoy!
Electric cars have come a long way, but one company still leads the pack when it comes to pure electric vehicles. That company is Tesla Motors.
Today, I had the opportunity to visit one of Tesla’s newest stores inNewport Beach. In a place like Orange County, where we don’t have to worry about 12 inches of snow, most of our worries are over traffic and where we left our sunglasses. Newport Beach is a great location for Tesla to have a store, right on the water, not far from Fashion Island, and close to the innovative companies headquartered nearby in Irvine. Tesla doesn’t call them dealerships, but uses the term stores, as they are more then just a place to purchase a car. They welcome the public to come and visit and to learn more about electric vehicles. Walking in to the store, you’re greeted by a clean and crisp showroom with the Tesla Roadster 2.5 and the Roadster Sport 2.5 presented in the middle. The maintenance bays are surrounded by glass and are visible from all angles (missing the noticeable stains of grease and oil that one would find in a high school auto shop). If you treat your roadster right the only time it will ever see these bays is for the once yearly check and every ten to replace the battery pack. In addition to the services at the dealer, for those of us who live busy lives, Tesla will come to you for servicing of your roadster and will work with your electric company to install a high-power wall charger (similar to a high power outlet for a dryer) for you to “top-off” your roadster with electricity.
Since one of my favorite shows is Top Gear, let’s talk numbers. The Tesla Roadster 2.5 and the Tesla Roadster Sport 2.5 both only have 12 moving parts. That’s right 12, that last line was not a typo (you can even fact check it here). I can say from a test drive that 12 moving parts was more then enough to fling my athletically-average American male body down the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH), slingshot it through Laguna Canyon, and then back up PCH, but more on that later. Both of the Roadsters are a marvel of modern engineering, but the third generation on display today is even better.
Right, so you want numbers, the motor kicks out the gasoline equivalent of 248 horsepower and 276 foot-pounds of torque, which powers the rear wheels via a single-speed direct-drive transmission. The Roadster Sport has 288 horsepower and 295 foot-pounds of torque. All of this equals a 0-60 time of 3.9 seconds in the Roadster and 3.7 seconds in the Roadster Sport. Trust me, it was more then enough to beat a gas-powered Lotus off the light near Fashion Island, but more on the test drive in a bit.