The word “prototype” is used loosely here because while this early Tesla Roadster is indeed a “validation prototype”, it’s actually closer to a production version of the car than what most people think when they hear the word “prototype”.
Someone in California is currently trying to get $1 million for the Tesla Roadster #32 validation prototype. What do you think are his chances to actually get his asking price?
I don’t see it happening, but you never know. The owner wrote in the description of his Ebay listing:
“One of only approximately 33 prototypes made, some of which were destroyed for crash testing. Not originally sold to the public. Has early features like the gear shift knob not found on most other models. In fantastic condition with just over 18,000 miles. “
That’s almost 20 times what your average Roadster is going for and there are over 2,000 of those out there. Of course, there are now some early owners upgrading their car with the “Roadster 3.0” battery upgrade for ~340 miles of range. At $29,000 for the upgrade, those vehicles could technically sell for as much as $100,000.
If you really want to take into account the “validation prototype” aspect, the very same Roadster #32 was for sale for ~$65,000 just 4 years ago.
So here’s how he justifies the $1 million asking price now:
“A million dollar Tesla may be crazy today but with vintage Ferrari’s going for $15M+, imagine what the first Ferrari prototype models would go for. Take that 30 years into the future when most cars are electric and they’ll be able to trace their history back to Tesla, the company that is changing the industry, and this being a prototype of its first model. Historic and super sporty.”
He is clearly trying to present the opportunity as an investment, but cars rarely end up being good investments or investments at all really. Someone would need to attach great value to “validation prototype” aspect which is a flimsy proposition. Additionally, with over 2,000 “original Tesla Roadsters” produced, it will take some time for scarcity to help the price.
Anyway, what do you think of his logic? You think the Tesla Roadster will become a collection car in the future?
Pictures from the listing: