Tesla Roadster road-trip map from Los Angeles to Detroit, Dec 2009-Jan 2010Enlarge Photo
As we've noted elsewhere, we write a lot about Tesla. We certainly give them more ink...errr, electrons?...than their share of the sports car market, since they're just delivered their 900th Roadster. Not that they're not wildly fun to drive, mind you.
But despite early engineering difficulties and management turmoil, the feisty electric-car startup keeps on running like the Energizer Bunny. Their latest stunt is an all-electric, 16-employee, 2,700-mile road trip from Los Angeles to the Detroit Auto Show.
As with any PR exercise these days, participants will be photographing and blogging about the experience on Facebook, Twitter, and so forth. The goal is to demonstrate that the 2010 Tesla Roadster is tough and durable, and that "range anxiety is for the weak."
Ummm, yeah. OK. Right.
Tesla Roadster on teacups at William Ashley in TorontoEnlarge Photo
The company plans to show off the Roadster's "road trip ability" and "safety through any and all weather conditions," including jaunts through St. Louis and Chicago. As the map of their trip shows, though, much of the route is through more temperate southern states.
That route also has the advantage of avoiding the highest part of the Rocky Mountains. Had they started at their headquarters just south of San Francisco and gone east on I-80, they would have hit heavy snows and had to climb from sea level to 8,640 feet en route.
To be fair, the company does point out that the Roadster is "the world's only sports car that does not lose efficiency at altitude, making it uniquely appropriate for Colorado, Bavaria and other Alpine destinations."
We're curious about how well the Roadster's lithium-ion battery pack would be at delivering power following an overnight cold soak in Detroit's sub-zero wind chill. But we suspect the road-trip car will spend its overnight recharges in heated garages.
Oh yeah, the carbon fiber body panels don't rust either. (And when's the last time you saw a rusty Ferrari?)
If you're planning to buy your very own 2009 Tesla Roadster, remember: Until December 31, you can get a $42,000 Colorado tax credit for that purchase. Act fast.
Gratuitous Contest Plug: High Gear Media has partnered with Tesla Motors on a new writing contest where YOU can win a tour and road test of the 2010 Tesla Roadster Sport. You can submit as many articles as you like and enter multiple times. Enter now!