Thanks to the generosity of Tesla Motors, I’m excited to say we had a chance to shakedown the new Roadster Sport 2.5 this week.
Boston traffic hindered us from performing a “proper” test, but we still got a decent impression of the car’s behavior and usage, which is a unique experience indeed.
The absence of a gear lever was a bit unnerving and the fixed-gear like operation of the throttle took some getting used to, but the car proved very exciting in the short time we had it.
As this is the “2.5″ version of the Roadster, some of the problems Jeremy Clarkson noted in his test several years ago have been dealt with. The car’s now much more reliable, a bit quicker on the charge, and has what I’d call a much prettier gauge module.
Of course it’s not perfect; things like tiny gaps between carpeting remind you that this is a “boutique” car, and the driving experience is so Mario Kart-esque you’re liable to start hucking turtle shells to make other motorists get out ‘the way.
But you’ll be willing to do whatever it takes to get a clear lane in this car. While the top speed is a punky 120something, the Tesla can blast from 0-60 in 3.7 seconds.
And since all you have to do is mash the pedal, even my grandmother could send a Ferrari F430 home crying… at least right up to the speed limit.
The cabin is snug to be sure, members of the Wal-Mart nation might want to allow some extra time for getting into the seat. But if you’re a “one-with-the-machine” kind of driver, you should find yourself right at home.
We had the opportunity to record some of our escapades in the car, and despite limited technological means it turned out alright. Click here to see our driving impressions or watch the video below.
After a long two months of great convertible weather passed, Nino finally relinquished dad’s FIAT Spider 2000.
While it still may not be perfect, it sure looks good.
We decided to immortalize it while we could, before some jackass in the Crosby’s parking lot opens the door of their QX56 too close and squashes it.
These photos were taken at Castle Hill in Ipswich, MA. If only my camera were a bit sharper…
The family’s beloved roadster, the 1979 FIAT Spider 2000 that raised me is finally getting the treatment it deserves- an almost full restoration back to its original glory with a working roof, heater, and an absence of rust.
Dad dropped it off at our mechanic’s, an animated Italian fellow named Nino DeMayo (for real) who happens to have worked on FIATs since the days when they were still sold new here in the U.S.
Spiders are his passion, and he’s progressing nicely on ours.
Bumpers have been removed (for now), and a lot of rust has been cut out already.
By the end of the month, we’re expecting a new roof, functional heater (did I already mention that?), working tail lights, a fresh coat of paint and who knows- maybe even an inspection sticker.
It doesn’t look… too bad… as is, but I’m pretty excited to see how it turns out. Stay posted.