Thursday, June 4, 2009

2013 Tesla Roadster To Pack Four Seats And All Wheel Drive, Aiming At 911 Carrera Turbo


TESLA MOTORS CEO Elon Musk has revealed that his company’s plans for the next generation Tesla Roadster includes a 2+2 seating configuration, available in both rear- and all-wheel-drive models, aimed at the Porsche 911 Carrera Turbo.

In a recent talk with Green Car Advisor, Musk said that while the company hasn’t yet begun work on the next Roadster, tentatively scheduled for 2013, he is exploring the idea of a larger body with a small back seat, because he also owns a Carrera Turbo and it offers two back seats for his children.

Musk said that if not for those back seats, the Roadster would be the only car he’d need.

Musk said that the new Roadster would be available in hardtop and convertible models, and would likely ride on the larger Model S platform to accommodate the additional seats.

Whether Musk is targeting the Carrera Turbo purely because of its rear seats and overall shape, or if there’s also a performance-oriented goal there as well, was unclear.

Whether we’ll see this new Roadster – or even the current model – in Australia remains to be seen, but short of private importers, it would seem unlikely.

Daimler – parent company of Mercedes-Benz – recently purchased a 10 percent stake in Tesla to accelerate development of its own all-electric vehicles.

While that new Daimler involvement could feasibly lead to a Mercedes-Benz-lead Tesla distribution in Australia, it’s more likely only the jointly-developed Mercedes-Benz or Smart-branded electric vehicles will appear in Aussie showrooms.