Tesla's head honcho confirms an all-new Roadster is on the agenda, but it's not a top priority right now.
Back in July 2015, a press release from Tesla detailing some updates for the Model S also contained a blurb about the next-gen Roadster being due in four years. While the original plan was to launch the all-new model in 2019, things might have changed since then taking into account Elon Musk now says a successor is ‘some years away,’ so it’s unlikely we will see it before the end of the decade. While that will come as a disappointment for some people, at least we have reconfirmation a new Roadster is in the works.
It doesn’t come as a big surprise the Roadster doesn’t rank high on Tesla’s priority list since the EV manufacturer has a lot on its plate right now. 2017 will be the year when production of the Model 3 will kick off, a compact sedan set to serve as foundation for a Model Y crossover that will slot underneath the Model X.
For the existing Roadster, which shares fewer than seven percent of its components with the Lotus Elise, Tesla has a 3.0 battery update available for $29,000. It brings an “R80” badge to denote the upgraded battery featuring a capacity of approximately 80 kWh. With the upgrade in place, the Roadster can do almost 340 miles (547 kilometers) between charges. Getting your name on the list requires putting down a $5,000 deposit and arming yourself with patience as Tesla can only upgrade 2-3 car per week because of the increased complexity.
Note: Next-gen Tesla Roadster speculative render pictured.