We’ve known for a while now that Tesla’s new Roadster is not a “priority,” but CEO Elon Musk has now made it clear that it won’t come until 2021.

Once it will be here though, Musk claims it will break the overall Nürburgring record.

When first unveiling the vehicle, Tesla claimed a list of impressive specs for its new Roadster, including 0-60 mph in 1.9 seconds, 620 miles of range, and more.

The specs were enabled by a giant 200 kWh battery pack and a 3-electric motor drivetrain.

However, we now learn that this 3-electric motor powertrain, now known as the “Plaid powertrain,” is going to make it to the Model S first.

Musk said today that the Tesla Model S “Plaid” with new rear-facing seats is coming in October/November 2020.

The CEO added that the new Roadster and the Model X will get the “Plaid” powertrain later:

When unveiling it in 2017, Tesla said that the next-generation Roadster would be released in 2020, but the new timeline pushes the car to 2021.

Tesla’s CEO said that Tesla would learn from the deployment of the ‘Plaid Powertrain’ in the Model S for the use in the new Roadster later.

Musk recently tempered expectations of the timing of the release of the supercar, saying that it’s not a priority. However, he’s still hyping the specs.

The CEO “absolutely” believes that the new Roadster is going to beat the all-time Nürburgring record of “6:44” for a production car:

Other supercar makers even said that Tesla was raising the standards with the new Roadster.

That was even before Musk said that the electric supercar would have even greater performance with a “SpaceX package” that will include cold air thrusters.

The CEO said that these thrusters, which basically amount to small rocket engines, will “dramatically improve acceleration, top speed, braking, and cornering,” but he also said that it would “maybe even allow a Tesla to fly.”

Earlier this year, Musk told me that Tesla aims to make a Roadster “hover” test with SpaceX package late next year.

Electrek’s Take

We expected the new Roadster to slip into 2021 for a while now.

It’s not surprising, but it is frustrating since Tesla has been taking a lot of money for reservations and it used the new Roadster as a sale incentive in the referral program.

I think this is due to a change of plan.

Model S sales are down and introducing the ‘Plaid’ powertrain in the vehicle program first is going to boost sales – even though we are talking over a year from now.


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