Lotus Helps Create 135 MPH Electric Tesla Roadster

The carbon-fiber-bodied Tesla Roadster is fitted with a lithium-ion battery pack and a 185kW (248 horsepower) electric motor driving the rear wheels through a clutchless two-speed automatic transmission.

Published: 22-Jul-2006

SAN CARLOS, Calif. — In a unique partnership with Lotus Cars, a Silicon Valley startup firm called Tesla Motors hopes to rock the automotive world with a pure-electric, high-performance two-seater called simply the Roadster.

Tesla officially lifted the veil of semi-secrecy surrounding the car on Thursday, although it had been leaking details to selected media outlets for months. The principals come from a variety of high-tech backgrounds. Among the investors are Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.

The carbon-fiber-bodied Tesla Roadster was designed by and jointly developed with Lotus. Final assembly will be at the Lotus facility in Hethel, England, although Tesla said it will maintain an R&D center at its headquarters here in Northern California.

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