Electric automobiles are good for the environment, but in the popular imagination they have earned a doubtful reputation. In the UK, the Sinclair C5 became something of a media joke: it was a battery-assisted tricycle steered by a handlebar under the driver's knees. It had a top speed of 15 miles per hour, even though modified versions achieved 150 miles per hour and an acceleration of 0-670 mph in 5 seconds. This means that the automobile market share for electric cars has always been very small. Today, however, the Tesla Roadster, a worthy addition to a supercar gallery puts electric cars firmly on the map when it comes to high-performance vehicles with superb appearance.
In the Roadster, performance is even more exciting than petrol-powered cars, because unlike internal combustion engines, an electric motor reaches 100% torque from 0 rpm. A petrol engine has very little torque at low revs, and it reaches peak torque only in a narrow rpm range. This is what the gear-box is for... With the Roadster, acceleration is great, and there is no clutch pedal. Revs can reach 14,000 rpm, with a peak of 215 kW (288 HP) at 5133 rpm. The Tesla Roadster offers supercar sensations with its acceleration, which is faster than nearly any car in its price class and is twice as energy efficient as leading hybrids. It is the only highway-capable electric vehicle for sale in Europe or North America. The Roadster does not need regular oil changes or exhaust system work. These spider roadsters have no spark plugs, pistons, hoses, belts or clutches to replace. Tesla recommends a standard service and diagnostic inspection once a year – and Tesla can perform this service at customers’ homes or offices.
Today, Tesla have taken their Roadster a step further, in an agreement with pioneering luxury Swiss watchmaker TAG Heuer. On March 18, the two companies will be announcing cooperation in a worldwide partnership, in the year in which the iconic Swiss watch brand celebrates its 150th anniversary.
The 2010 TAG Heuer Tesla Roadster will be on display at the Geneva Motor Show. This one-of-a-kind collector's car includes a unique interior by Tesla Chief Designer Franz von Holzhausen, incorporating TAG Heuer avant-garde design elements and a specially designed center console due to host TAG Heuer’s cutting edge concept watch to be revealed in Basel on March 18th.
This car also features a TAG Heuer Meridiist mobile phone as well as a one-fifth second Heuer Limited Edition Stopwatch. This Swiss-made timepiece with mechanical movement pays tribute to the 1860 founding of the company and evoques the legendary revival of the brand's vintage stopwatches.
The car's exterior color scheme is Foucault Field Gray, embodying the innovative spirit of both companies. The design was inspired by the new TAG Heuer concept watch, a technical milestone in mechanical movements, which brings technologically advanced art to life through motion.
The 2010 TAG Heuer Tesla Roadster will remain at the Tesla booth during the public show days, March 4-14 at the Palexpo-Geneva conference center. The car will then be driven to Baselworld, the world's largest watch exhibition, held in Basel March 18-28.
Since its founding in an artisan's workshop in the Swiss Jura, TAG Heuer has become one of the world's best-known luxury brands -- maker of avant-garde watches, eyewear and premium mobile phones for refined consumers around the globe.
TAG Heuer, a star brand from the luxury group and worldwide leader Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy (LVMH), also has deep roots in the automotive sector.
Company founder Edouard Heuer received in 1911 the patent for The Time of Trip, the first car dashboard chronograph, followed in 1933 by the Autavia -- the first dashboard timekeeper for both automobiles and aviation. The benchmark in cutting-edge chronographs and timekeeping technology since 1860, TAG Heuer is the watch brand that can claim the longest and strongest association with motor sports and dream cars. Both watches and chronographs are inspired and driven by motor sports, from Formula One to GT cars.
"TAG Heuer has a rich history and expertise with the world's most prestigious racing teams -- but this is the first ever partnership we've forged with an electric sports car company," said Jean-Christophe Babin, President and CEO of TAG Heuer. "We believe that high-performance drivers are increasingly searching for products that are efficient, socially responsible and stylish. TAG Heuer and Tesla are two of the few companies arleady achieving these ideals today."
Tesla Motors began developing an electric sports car in 2004 and remains the only automaker selling highway-capable electric cars. The Tesla Roadster accelerates faster than nearly any other supercar yet it is twice as energy efficient as a Toyota Prius -- the only car that delivers supercar performance guilt-free, with zero tailpipe emissions and a carbon footprint dramatically lower than any comparable sports car.
The Tesla Roadster is quickly becoming the must-have car among Hollywood celebrities, European royalty and socially responsible trendsetters worldwide. Tesla has delivered more than 1,000 cars to consumers in 21 countries. "Engineers at both TAG Heuer and Tesla understand intuitively that technology -- whether worn on your wrist or driven on the road -- can help us live better while we tread more lightly on this planet," said Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
Tesla is the world’s only automaker selling highway-capable electric automobiles . Tesla sells cars online and operates showrooms and galleries in London, Munich, Monaco, California’s Silicon Valley and Los Angeles, Colorado, New York, Seattle, Chicago and South Florida. You can buy the Tesla Roadster online at teslamotors.com for about €84,000 excluding VAT.
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