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The five Roadsters that competed in the 2010 e-maglia across the Alps won 1st, 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 11th among the 25 electric cars that competed. [1]
The five Roadsters that competed in the 2010 e-maglia across the Alps won 1st, 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 11th among the 25 electric cars that competed. [1]
Preface Note: We created this page back in 2006, when Tesla Motors was not paid much attention to. We paid attention to it, and give it quite a bit of coverage in our news. For a couple of years, this page is one of the first three that showed up in a Google search for "Tesla Motors". However, as the mainstream has taken notice and stepped up pay adequate attention, we have turned our attention to other, struggling technologies. So consider this more of an archive snapshot than an up-to-date view. -- Sterling D. Allan (July 18, 2013)


Tesla Motors, Inc. has developed the Tesla Roadster, a 100% electric vehicle named after Nikola Tesla; it has a 250+ mile range. It is not a hybrid. Focus on performance makes it an exceptionally quick car. Major VC backed, as well as backing from Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX ($40 million). Company debuted the car July 19, 2006 in Santa Monica. Tesla Motors, Inc. is a Silicon Valley automobile startup company focusing on the production of high performance, consumer-oriented electric vehicles. The firm was started in 2003 by engineers Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning in San Carlos, and has since grown to include several team members with extensive computer, electrical, and automotive engineering backgrounds from the region. Tesla has also managed to secure initial funding from prominent investors, such as PayPal co-founder Elon Musk, and Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page.

Tesla has a signifigant relationship with Lotus. A design contest was held for the final design of the Tesla Roadster, then codenamed "Dark Star", which Lotus won. Lotus will build the roadster, which is similar in size and appearance to their Elise. Tesla is currently working on a sedan, codenamed "White Star" which may be introduced as early as 2008.

Claims to be more than twice as efficient as any Hybrid on the road. They cost less per mile to drive, use less fuel per mile, and produce less pollution per mile. The Tesla Roadster produces one-tenth of the pollution and is six times as efficient as the best sports car. The Tesla Roadster needs only two gears because the motor delivers high torque over a much wider range of rpm's than any gasoline engine. No reverse gear is needed; the motor runs backwards for reversing.

Contents

Official Website

Latest Developments

May 21, 2010

  • EVs > Electric Cars > Tesla Motors >
    Toyota-Tesla Deal Adds Spark to Electric Car Industry - In a move that may provide a spark for the electric automobile industry, Toyota, the world's largest automaker, is teaming up Tesla Motors Inc, the makers of the only highway-legal all-electric car in the United States. The new partnership, including a $50 million investment from Toyata, will allow Tesla to advance its more affordable vehicles like the Model S sedan. (Associated Press; May 21, 2010)

Mar. 26, 2009

  • Tesla Model S Electric Sedan Breaks Cover - Tesla Motors, the electric-car maker, unveiled its Model S sedan on Thursday, expected to be delivered to customers in the third quarter of 2011, in three battery ranges: 160-mile, 230-mile and 300-mile. The based model is priced at $49,900 after federal tax credits. (NY Times; March 26, 2009)

Feb. 2009

  • Tesla Teases Us With a Shot of Its Sedan - Tesla says the Model S will go into production in 2011 and it is expected to cost less than $50,000 once you account for the $7,500 federal tax break on electric cars. That's less than half the price of the Roadster, which goes for $109,000. (Wired; Feb. 12, 2009)
  • Tesla to be Profitable by Mid Year - "Tesla is already in the fortunate position of being sold out until early November, something few automakers can claim, and will soon be sold out of all 2009 production. While we have had some cancellations due to buyers experiencing personal financial difficulties, new orders continue to flow in every week from the United States and Europe. We have now produced over 200 Roadsters for customers and there are more than 1,000 customers still awaiting delivery." (Tesla Blog; Feb 12, 2009)

Jan. 2009

Nov. 2008

  • Tesla Motors Receives $40 Million Financing Commitment - The financing will be used primarily to accelerate manufacturing of the Tesla Roadster, an all-electric, high performance sports car. In addition, the funds will be used to expand Tesla's electric powertrain supply business and continue future product development. (MarketWatch; VentureBeat; Nov. 3, 2008)

July 2008

  • Update on Production and Delivery of Cars to Customers - "Already 9 production Roadsters have arrived in California, another 3 arrive this weekend, and they will keep arriving at the rate of 4 per week (except for the scheduled factory shut down in the last two weeks of August). In fact, currently there are 27 Roadsters in various stages of assembly. In large measure we deliberately limit the production until we install our own born and bred final transmission by mid-September, at which time production will start to ramp up leading toward a monthly rate of over 100 cars in December." Ze'ev Drori President and CEO (Tesla Motors Blog; July 12, 2008)

June 2008

  • Model S Goes to the Bay Area - California is the right location for Tesla’s manufacturing facility; operational advantages close to management and engineering teams, proximity to important markets and Governor Schwarzenegger’s commitment to leading the nation and the world in addressing climate and energy concerns. (Video) (Tesla Blog; June 30, 2008)

March 2008

Sept. 2007

From Tesla Motors newsletter

  • The Tesla Roadster's range came in at 245 miles per charge, based on the EPA's combined city/highway testing cycle. The highway cycle was 235 and the city cycle was 255. (In EVs city mileage is generally higher thanks to regenerative braking.)
  • Tesla Motors CEO announced plans to start building the first Tesla Roadsters in January 2008. Nearly 600 customers have already reserved cars.

July, 2007

From Tesla Motors newsletter

  • Jay Leno recently joined Tesla Motors Chairman Elon Musk for a ride in the Tesla Roadster. Jay described the driving experience as “the first electric car that truly handles" and summed up the Tesla Roadster’s power delivery as “[having] instant torque. The faster you accelerate the faster you go".“The Most Fun You Can Have Without Fuel".
  • We have now accepted more than 560 reservations for the Tesla Roadster toward an anticipated first year production total of 800 cars.
  • GM Electric Vehicle Pioneer Alec Brooks Joins Tesla Motors Team

Sedan

  • Tesla electric sedan to join updated Roadster - Tesla Motors is working on a sedan. The new four-door model is tipped to share similar dimensions and performance with the BMW 5-Series. Two versions, with ranges of 200 and 300 miles. (AutoBlog; Nov. 24, 2006)

The Roadster

The Tesla Roadster is the first automobile to be produced by electric car firm Tesla Motors. The car was officially unveiled on July 20, 2006. Tesla claims prototypes have been able to accelerate from 0-60 mph (100 km/h) in about 4 seconds, and reach a top speed of 130 mph (210 km/h). Additionally, the car will be able to travel 250 miles (400 km) on a single charge of its lithium ion batteries with an equivalent gas mileage of 135 mpg (1.75 l/100 km). This value must be calculated using assumptions about electricity to gasoline equivalency since the car does not actually use gasoline.

The Roadster was developed in collaboration with Lotus, which supplied a subsequently-modified Lotus Elise chassis as the base for the new car. The design was also penned by Lotus' design studio. Besides the chassis, the Roadster appears to share a number of key components with the Elise, such as the suspension, and many interior pieces. The car will be assembled at the Lotus factory in Hethel, England.

According to the company:

  • The car can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in four seconds.
  • It plugs into the wall and is not a hybrid.
  • The battery gives it a range of 250 miles.
  • The sports car won't be cheap; but once the technology is established, it will lead to less-expensive cars for the ordinary driver.

According to other sources:

  • The Roadster's AC-induction electric motor can rotate at up to 13,500 rpm. [Detail from Wired]
  • At the heart of the electric motor is a high-efficiency rotor made with brazed copper -- which is more conductive than conventional aluminum rotors. [Detail from Wired]
  • The included home charger will give the Tesla a full charge in as few as 3.5 hours. [inline] (Photo: Tesla Motors)

Photos

Image:Tesla Roadster black profile01.jpg

  • Photos at Wired coverage July 21 (?), 2006
  • Photos at CNet coverage July 20, 2006.

Videos

Specifications

Standard Features

  • Twin airbag, seat belt retractors
  • 4 wheel ABS
  • Traction Control
  • Cruise Control
  • Central door locking
  • Alarm & Immobilizer
  • Homelink® device
  • Electric windows
  • Air conditioning
  • Heated Seats
  • Radio + 4 speaker audio kit with iPod interface
  • Half leather trim
  • Full carpet set
  • Passenger Footrest
  • Black soft top
  • Sun Visors
  • 7 spoke forged alloy wheels
  • Locking wheel lugs
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System
  • Tire Inflator
  • Cold weather ESS heater kit (sub zero charging)
  • Home based charging system (EVSE) with integral safety features
  • Unique headlamp assemblies using proprietary HID low-beam and halogen high-beam lamp units
  • LED taillights, rear and side marker lights
  • Incandescent front directional indicators and marker lights

Dimensions

  • Overall length: 155.4 inches / 3946 mm
  • Overall width: 73.7 inches / 1873 mm (incl. mirrors)
  • Overall height: 44.4 inches / 1127 mm (at curb weight)
  • Wheelbase: 92.6 inches / 2352 mm
  • Track - front: 57.6 inches / 1464 mm
  • Track - rear: 59.0 inches / 1499 mm
  • Curb Weight: Around 2500 pounds (subject to complete safety and durability testing) [2]

Motor

  • Type: 3-phase, 4-pole electric motor
  • Max net power: 185 kW (248 hp)
  • Max rpm: 13,500
  • Efficiency: 90% average, 80% at peak power

Transmission

  • Type: Two-speed sequential manual (reverse gear accomplished through reverse direction of motor)
Transmission
Gear Ratio Overall
First 4.20:1 14.3:1
Second 2.17:1 7.4:1
Final Drive 3.41:1
Reverse reverse direction of motor

Performance

  • 0-60 mph (0-100 km/h): approximately 4.0 s
  • Top speed: 130 mph (210 km/h)
  • Range: 250 miles (400 km)
  • MPG: Electrical equivalent of about 135 miles per gallon [3]

Safety

  • Are Lithium-Ion Electric Cars Safe? - The use of a type of battery with a history of overheating raises safety concerns. How Tesla Motors' Roadster addresses safety concerns, including cooling, disconnect, fuses, and casing. (MIT Technology Review; Aug. 3, 2006)

How it works

"The Tesla Roadster powertrain consists of four main parts: the battery pack (which we call Energy Storage System or ESS), motor, transmission, and the PEM (Power Electronics Module), none of which are “off-the-shelf‿ components. Rather, each includes innovations, both small and large, to support our mission of a high-performance car that’s gentle on the environment. Together, these four components form one of the most instrumented cars ever made."
More ...

Company

from http://www.teslamotors.com/company.html and http://www.teslamotors.com/press_releases.html

On July 1, 2002, we set out to create a better car for the world. Our vision was a car that was energy efficient but also good looking and fun to drive. We brought together a passionate team of engineers and designers from the technology and auto industries who are now hard at work on our ambitious goal.

Our cars consume very little energy and do not emit any pollutants. But unlike so many environmentally friendly cars that have come along before, our cars are beautifully styled, thoughtfully built, and designed to make driving fun. But great cars, and the companies that build them, are not made overnight; and so we are not yet ready to announce specifications or delivery dates. As soon as we can tell more about what we are doing, we will.

Tesla Motors was founded by Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning.

The company currently employs 70 people, including teams in California, the UK and Taiwan. The background and experience of Tesla's employees mirrors the vehicle itself, drawing from diverse expertise in the electronics, automotive and Internet industries.

Tesla Motors creates vehicles that conform to all U.S. safety, environmental and durability standards. Tesla's cars include modern safety equipment such as airbags, front crumple zones, side impact protection, 2-1/2 mph bumpers. Tesla will sell cars in the US only when they pass the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS).

Tesla will reveal further details of its business and its cars in early July, 2006.

Facility Photos

Tesla Motors, Inc. facility in San Carlos, CA.  Facility Photos by Randy Herrick.
Tesla Motors, Inc. facility in San Carlos, CA. Facility Photos by Randy Herrick.

Image:Tesla_Motors_facility_front_300.jpg

Image:Tesla Motors facility side 300.jpg

Videos

In the News

G
News
News of Tesla Motors
via Google News
Y
News
News of Tesla Motors
via Yahoo! News

- - - -

  • Tesla S p85 D autopilot test drive: 0-60 in 3.2 seconds - Tesla unveiling the new D model with dual motors on Oct. 9, 2014. "This is what it feels like to launch off of an aircraft carrier! The self driving autopilot feature was impressive!" (Free Energy Blog; October 11, 2014)
  • Storage > Capacitors / Batteries / Tesla Motors >
    Tesla CEO: Super-capacitors Trump Electric Car Batteries - Unlike batteries, supercapacitors do not lose the ability to store charge with age. Supercapacitors also have a much higher power density than batteries, and they can provide power far more quickly than existing battery technology. And they can supply up to 95% of the energy used to charge it on discharging. (AllCarsElectric; March 24, 2011)
  • Contests / EVs > Roadster >
    e-miglia rally through the Alps ends in Tesla-Tesla-Think finish - Five Tesla Roadsters recently competed in e-miglia, a 560 km Rally through Germany, Austria, and Italy. e-miglia was designed to raise awareness about EVs, as Targa Florio, the Mille Miglia or the Rally Monte Carlo did for gasoline-powered cars in the 20th century. Twenty-five EVs, capable of traveling 200 km per day, completed the route through the Alps. (Autoblog Green; Aug. 9, 2010)
  • EVs > Electric Cars > Tesla Motors >
    Toyota-Tesla Deal Adds Spark to Electric Car Industry - In a move that may provide a spark for the electric automobile industry, Toyota, the world's largest automaker, is teaming up Tesla Motors Inc, the makers of the only highway-legal all-electric car in the United States. The new partnership, including a $50 million investment from Toyata, will allow Tesla to advance its more affordable vehicles like the Model S sedan. (Associated Press; May 21, 2010)
  • EV record: Tesla Roadster travels 313 miles on a single charge - The Tesla Roadster has set a new distance record for a production electric vehicle, topping its own previous record of 241 miles on the course. The milestone took place during the 2009 Global Green Challenge in Australia where eco-friendly vehicles have been battling it out. (GizMag; Oct. 28, 2009)
  • Tesla Model S Electric Sedan Breaks Cover - Tesla Motors, the electric-car maker, unveiled its Model S sedan on Thursday, expected to be delivered to customers in the third quarter of 2011, in three battery ranges: 160-mile, 230-mile and 300-mile. The based model is priced at $49,900 after federal tax credits. (NY Times; March 26, 2009)
  • Electric Cars > Tesla Motors >
    Tesla to unveil electric 5-seat sedan next week - Tesla Motors announced it will unveil a five-seat sedan, to roll off assembly lines by 2011. The zero-emission "Model S" prototype with a lithium-ion battery pack will have a range of 225 miles (360 kilometers) per charge. The car has an anticipated base price of 57,400 dollars. (Yahoo News; March 19, 2009)
  • Awards >
    Innovators Under 35 - An annual event by Technology Review generates a list of top innovators under the age of 35, who's science and research they found to be most exciting. JB Straubel, CTO for Tesla Motors, became the top innovator for 2008. (Technology Review; Sept. Oct. 2008)
  • Electric Vehicles >
    Green-vehicle manufacturer Tesla falls on hard times - Tesla has delayed its S-model sedan, demoted its CEO, and closed its Michigan office. Founder Elon Musk is retaking the wheel as CEO, gearing up to make a "headcount reduction," and delaying the start of production of the Model S for "roughly six months to mid-2011, due to the current 'financiapocalypse' ." (BetaNews, InformationWeek; Oct. 17, 2008)
  • Tesla Roadster - A look under the hood of the electric sports car that is generating a buzz - This year, Tesla started delivering production vehicles, based on the test car shown here. The car sells for $109,000--but costs only a couple of cents per mile to power. (MIT Technology Review; Sept. - Oct. 2008)
  • The car isn't in mass production yet-Tesla is actually only putting out about one or two cars a week right now, but it will steadily increase production. By early next year, it hopes to be producing around 100 cars a month. (CNet; March 17, 2008). - Oct
  • Tesla Motors' Stealth Bloodbath - After raising over $100M, Tesla Motors Inc. has fired over thirty people -- nearly the entire team. Nagging transmission problems were partly to blame for the meltdown. (TeslaFounders; Jan. 10, 2008)
    • Redacted - "it was explained to me that Tesla and its financial backer(s) can spend far more than I can on a lawsuit…" (AutoBlogGreen; Jan. 18, 2008)
  • Tesla Electric Sports Car Plugged In - The California Air Resources Board and California Energy Commission has given Tesla Motors $561,000 for the development of a 16 kw public commercial charging station as part of almost $25 million worth of grants for the Alternative Fuel Incentive Program. (TreeHugger; May 27, 2007)
  • Tesla Motors To Open Five Dealer Outlets - Tesla Motors will open five customer service centers in conjunction with the public launch later this year of the Tesla Roadster, an all-electric sports car. More will follow, largely because the company will start producing a line of sedans in 2009. "To do 10,000 units for Whitestar (the codename for the sedan) we need to be in a lot more places." (TreeHugger; Mar. 16, 2007)
  • Tesla puts tech in economy cars - The folks over at Tesla Motors have set up a new venture named Tesla Energy. They will be selling batteries and related hardware to competing manufactures. (CNET; Jan. 24, 2007)
  • Tesla Sports Sedan in 2009? - Tesla Motors dropped hints about an electric sports sedan for the 2009 time frame that will boast the equivalent of 110 miles per gallon and use off-the-shelf lithium ion batteries. It will have room for five adults and a full-sized trunk, with 10,000-20,000 units per year sold for between $50,000 and $75,000. (The Energy Blog; January 18, 2007)
  • Tesla electric sedan to join updated Roadster - Tesla Motors is working on a sedan. The new four-door model is tipped to share similar dimensions and performance with the BMW 5-Series. Two versions, with ranges of 200 and 300 miles. (AutoBlog; Nov. 24, 2006)
  • Tesla Motors Honored with Breakthrough Award - For the first time, Popular Mechanics has awarded its annual top ten honor to an automobile, citing the Tesla Roadster, with its "6831-cell lithium-ion configuration that can propel the car 250 miles between charges". (PESN; Oct. 9, 2006)

Comments

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Contact

http://www.teslamotors.com/contact.html

Tesla Motors, Inc
1050 Bing Street
San Carlos, CA 94070
Phone: 650.413.4000; Fax: 650.413.4099
E-Mail: info@teslamotors.com


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