Tesla CEO and co-founder Elon Musk has implicitly confirmed that the top acceleration of the upcoming Roadster’s rocket thruster option will be 0-60mph (96.5km/hr) in 1.1 seconds.
It will be safe, he added, but perhaps not if you have a heart condition.
It will even be able to fly, albeit very briefly, said Musk on Friday via Twitter (Australia time).
This will actually be able to fly very briefly. I always laughed at flying cars & now making one. Fate 🖤 irony haha.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 21, 2021
The 2022 Roadster is the second incarnation of what was Tesla’s first electric vehicle to market in 2008, but is a vastly different beast to the original Lotus-based sportscar.
While the 2008 Roadster was a groundbreaking leap into electric mobility, and had similar specs with comparable specs to consumer-oriented combustion sportscars of the time, the new Roadster takes the notion of sportscar to whole a new level.
In 2018, Musk tweeted that those who buy the new Roadster, which is priced at $A326,000 for the limited edition Founder Series, would be available with a “SpaceX” option that consists of 10 rocket thrusters.
“New Tesla Roadster will exceed all gas sports cars in every way…” said Musk in an ensuing thread.
SpaceX option package for new Tesla Roadster will include ~10 small rocket thrusters arranged seamlessly around car. These rocket engines dramatically improve acceleration, top speed, braking & cornering. Maybe they will even allow a Tesla to fly …
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 9, 2018
Even without the rocket thrusters, the Roadster in its base configuration promises acceleration from 1-100km/hr in 2.1 seconds (0-60mph in 1.9 seconds), a specification which is only met by one other vehicle on the planet – the 2021 Koenigsegg Gemera according to Motor1.
Just how this insane incredible acceleration is to experience was shared in a video by Tesla in 2018.
But word is that with the rocket thruster enabled, the acceleration will be beyond insane, and ludicrous, and even plaid, referencing the upcoming tri-motor Model S that will now be unveiled on June 3, 2021.
No official figures on the rocket thruster acceleration appear to have been released by Tesla, although it had been theorised that it might approach 1 second.
What this would look like was shared in a 2020 computer-generated video by @pslavi_3d_vfx:
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In a tweet today Musk responded to a question on Twitter about if the 1.1 second time were true, to which he replied in the affirmative.
And perhaps even Musk is out of extreme superlatives, replying that it would be “very intense”.
He added that slamming the foot down in the Roadster with SpaceX add-on would, “Probably not wise for those with a medical condition – same as a hardcore roller coaster.”
Yes, with the SpaceX rocket thruster option package. It will be safe, but very intense. Probably not wise for those with a medical condition – same as a hardcore roller coaster.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 20, 2021
One can’t help wonder how much fuel – something Musk is passionate about reducing the use of, at least in the road transport industry – and rubber would be burned by vehicles using the SpaceX option.
For those wondering if the Model S Plaid will also get the insane SpaceX rocket thruster treatment, we are sorry to say that no, this will not be an option:
Oh sorry, yes, Roadster will have thrusters, not Plaid. Plaid is indeed close to the theoretical maximum of a roadworthy car without special devices.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 20, 2021
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.