Mythbusters Part 2: The Tesla Roadster is not a Converted Lotus Elise | Blog | Tesla Motors

2 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Mythbusters Part 2: The Tesla Roadster is not a Converted Lotus Elise | Blog | Tesla Motors

Mythbusters Part 2: The Tesla is not a Converted Lotus Elise

One of the common misconceptions about the Roadster is that it is an electrified Elise. This has been an problem to deal with the Tesla is vastly different an Elise and it is important that are aware of this. In fact, we counted how many parts the two shared and the total number was 7% by parts count.

If you were to it by parts value, the number be even smaller.

So you could say the Tesla is similar to a Lotus , except it has a totally different body panels, aluminum rear sub-frame, brakes, ABS HVAC and rear suspension. The also neglects to carry the gas tank, emissions equipment and If you were to try to convert an Elise to a and started throwing away that aren’t carried what you would basically be with a windshield, dashboard with airbags! ), front and a removable soft top.

For comparison, Lamborghini cars upwards of ten percent of their content with Audi I can only guess what the is between Ford cars and high end Aston Martin and brands.

At the same time, the is a great car in its own right for what it was to do. Several engineering breakthroughs Lotus first implemented in the in particular the use of aluminum extrusions in the that are bonded (as opposed to have since been by several carmakers and brands, Aston Martin and Jaguar I am not aware of any formal relationship Lotus and those two automakers.) It was the that this approach a lightweight, rigid chassis and the up-front tooling costs of are significantly cheaper than that led Tesla to connect Lotus about adopting a approach for the Roadster.

Early in Tesla’s history, the company had focused on developing battery technology, the time to think about how to approach a fully integrated EV car. As a there were potential to identifying an existing platform had already been tested for US regulations and which could most non-EV parts. As most things, however, the is in the details.

For starters, placing a pound battery in the midsection of the car everything about the behavior of the that were originally for the ICE powered Elise. In order to the added weight of the battery the aluminum tub chassis had to be redesigned to a specification, increasing strength and the battery pack as a stressed to increase rigidity.

Since we had decided to redesign the we also chose to redesign the rails so that they sit a few inches lower than in the Elise, greatly improving and egress. The chassis is produced for and does not start its life as an chassis.

To accommodate the battery motor and transmission, Tesla a new rear subframe. In order to the increased weight in the rear, new wishbones were designed. An effect of the new rear subframe and was a wheelbase about 2 inches than the Elise.

The added longer wheelbase, and desire for a type of driving feel for our required a redesign of the suspension to our ride and handling goals.

A area of development for an EV that is not obvious to the average person is the 12V (fans, headlights, AC, heaters, All of these things have over the last 100 years to run off the combustion engine. In an EV where is no ICE and the main battery is running at 400 volts, sourcing, designing and these systems is no small

GM recently told of unforeseen they ran into in the development of the related to 12V accessories that say has driven the likely cost of the car up $5K to Pretty much every car on the uses a heat exchanger to heat from engine to generate cabin heat. why the car has to warm up before it blows hot Every car on the market uses a driven compressor for the air conditioning.

gas car also uses a belt alternator to generate 12V DC to run all of the other None of these things for the Tesla Roadster or any other EV, so need to be designed specially for the I also left out power which normally rely on the from an ICE to generate boost (on an EV you an electrically driven vacuum

All along, Tesla was developing its own styling for the Roadster. Once every single panel on the was unique. The only exterior that are carryover are the rear-view which Tesla carried to avoid expensive development and testing costs.

The headlights and were designed to be unique to as well because they are so to the character of the car.

As for materials: panels (except for the bumpers) are entirely of carbon fiber to weight. By way of comparison, the next car that uses carbon for body panels is the Mercedes SLR, which will set you a cool $500,000.

So what remains as carryover Lotus? The most noticeable are the windshield and the dashboard, including the wheel. The fact that pieces are so visible to the driver, or gawker might partially the reason why people sometimes the cars are closer cousins they are. The reason we over these parts of the car was to the onerous development and safety associated with passenger and airbag testing of a new design.

had already successfully designed and the interior passenger compartment the Elise and carrying it over financial sense.

That part 2 of the Mythbusters series. I’d to hear your thoughts on myths to address in future

Tagged as:

Other articles of the category "Lotus":

Our partners
Follow us
Contact us
Our contacts

Born in the USSR


About this site

For all questions about advertising, please contact listed on the site.

Car Catalog with specifications, pictures, ratings, reviews and discusssions about cars