Tesla CEO Elon Musk unveils a surprise new car: A new ridiculously fast Roadster

Key Points
  • Tesla unveiled its second generation Roadster in Los Angeles on Thursday
  • CEO Elon Musk said that the car will be incredibly fast for a production vehicle
Tesla just threw in a major surprise at the semi truck unveiling: a revamped Roadster
Tesla surprised everyone at the semi truck unveiling with a revamped Roadster

Tesla unveiled its next generation Roadster on Thursday.

In a shock unveiling reminiscent of a Steve Jobs "One more thing..." surprise, Tesla CEO Elon Musk revealed that the car will be incredibly fast for a production vehicle.

Tesla rolled out the car immediately after unveiling the Tesla Semi truck before a crowd in Los Angeles on Thursday night.


The new Roadster clearly takes aim at high end sports cars.

"The point of doing this is to give a hardcore smackdown to gasoline cars," Musk told a crowd in Los Angeles on Thursday.

He added that the Roadster "will be the fastest production car ever made, period," he said.

The base model will be able to travel from 0-60 miles per hour in 1.9 seconds, which would be a record. It will go 0-100 miles per hour in 4 seconds. It will have a 200 kilowatt hour battery pack and will be able to drive 620 miles on a single charge, Musk said.

Tesla Roadster
Courtesy: Tesla

That is the longest range of any electric vehicle ever, he said.

"It will do the quarter mile in 8.9 seconds," Musk said. "This will the first time that any production car has broken 9 seconds in the quarter mile."

The car will seat four people. Customers can reserve a model with a $50,000 deposit. Those who want to buy one of the 1,000 Founders Series Roadsters will have to shell out $250,000 upfront.

The car is the second version of the original Roadster, Tesla's first production car. The company made the Roadster from 2008 to 2012.

"People have asked us for a long time, 'when are you going to make a new Roadster?'" Musk said. "We are making it now."

The car is expected to be available in 2020.


Tesla is revealing both vehicles at a time when investors and analysts have expressed concerns about the company's ability to deliver on its production goals for its Model 3 sedan.

"Elon's showmanship remains intact, even as his customers' patience for Model 3 delivery wanes," said Karl Brauer, executive publisher of Kelley Blue Book and Autotrader. "The specs on the new semi truck and sports car would put both vehicles at the top of their segments...assuming they can be produced and sold as part of a sustainable business plan. So far that final element has eluded Tesla Motors, which makes it difficult to see these vehicles as more than "what if" concept cars."