PRICE About $200,000 ENGINE Three-phase electric POWER 185kW and 14,000-rev limit TORQUE 380Nm from 0-5500 revs TRANSMISSION Single speed, rearwheel drive PERFORMANCE 0-100km/h in 3.9 seconds (claimed) TOP SPEED 200km/h (limited) RECHARGE TIME 3.5 hours BATTERY REPLACEMENT About $16,000 (not yet on sale in Australia) FUEL ECONOMY 0 litres/100km EMISSIONS 0 grams co2/km is tricky — much like that of a regular Lotus Elise, really.
However, the steering feels precise at high speeds around Queensland Raceway, though there is a fair bit of kickback over the bumps.
Though the outside is well made and the sports seats are leather, the spartan interior trim is dominated by hard plastic and cheaplooking instruments. Again, like a Lotus Elise.
Getting in and out is as difficult as it is in an Elise too, but in the cockpit it feels comfortable with generous leg and head room.
The rag top has to be removed by hand and stored in the surprisingly big boot.
Even with the top removed, there is little wind noise, so the lack of aural feedback is quite a surprise at high speed.
An interesting feature is a valet mode that restricts speed, acceleration and range while a valet is parking your car.
The Tesla Roadster may be a pin-up car, but is it also the green future of motoring?
There is no chance of that until the mains electricity used to charge its battery pack is also green, but it is a start and shows electric cars are more than just boring little boxes.