The new Tesla electric car is hot! But, as the company website proudly claims, "it burns rubber, not gasoline!"
This is not just any old electric car. The Tesla electric car is a beauty and definitely one of a kind. It comes with a Lotus designed chassis and has better acceleration than a Lamborghini Murcielago.
The Tesla is more than twice as fuel efficient as the best hybrid car. It only costs about a penny a mile to drive, goes up to 250 miles on a single charge and all you have to do is plug it in every night like you do your cell phone or iPod.
Who said electric cars weren't fun?
Ever since the early days of automobiles over a hundred years ago, electric cars have always been considered to be dull and boring. Oh sure, an electric car was fine if you only had a short commute or had to shop at the local grocery and couldn't get there by foot or bicycle. But they were slow, ugly and hardly more than glorified golf carts.
But two Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning, have changed all that forever. They've designed an electric car that's exciting to drive and gorgeous to look at!
The Tesla Roadster is a 100% electric, two-seater convertible that goes from zero to 60 mph in about 4 seconds, with a top speed of around 130 mph. It also has no clutch and a wide, flat torque curve, which means no matter which of the two gears you're driving in or how fast you're going, acceleration is instantaneous.
Whether you're at a stoplight or on the interstate and want to pass the car in front of you, just step on the pedal and off you go like a shot.
The Toyota Prius, on the other hand, which is the best selling hybrid, takes over ten seconds to go from zero to 60. Of course, the Prius isn't a sports car, but this comparison will give you an idea of just how efficient and well engineered an electric car can be. For example, the Tesla electric motor has only one moving part, yet it still cranks out 248 hp.
The car's energy comes from 6,831 lithium ion batteries. These are the same batteries you use to charge your laptop or cell phone. It comes with a portable charging pack - in case you're traveling more than 125 miles from home - and the batteries only take about 3 1/2 hours to fully charge.
By the way, the batteries are recyclable and Tesla guarantees them for five years or 100,000 miles.
However, if you want the thrill of owning the new Tesla, it's going to cost you a 100 grand. But, if all goes according to plan, the price will come down as more cars are sold. They've already got a second more affordable sports sedan in the works.
In the past, electric cars were designed by people who believed you shouldn't be driving at all and, if you were, you should be punished. It's no wonder they never caught on. But the Tesla electric car promises a "sweet" future!