2008 Tesla Roadster
Lot 61 | Monterey Jet Center Auction | Estimate $150,000 - $175,000
Chassis No. 5YJRE11B381000292
Unveiled in July 2006, Tesla's striking Roadster design represented not only the nascent company's first foray into car production, but also the start of a new chapter in the annals of personal transportation. Based on a lengthened Lotus Elise chassis and featuring a 185 kW three-phase, four-pole AC electric motor, it offered not only sub-four second 0-60 mph performance and a top speed of 125 mph, but also an impressive range of almost 250 miles. Significantly, the Roadster was the first all-electric, serial production car to gain US Highway approval and, in retrospect, is viewed as the genesis of a company which in 2021 produced almost one million cars.
This particular example was purchased new in Santa Rosa, California in 2009, generously specified with a detachable factory painted carbon fibre hardtop, optional electronics package, premium interior, forged wheels, and metallic paint, in addition to standard features such as ABS, Traction Control, Cruise Control and Air Conditioning; the included window sticker documents a sticker price of $106,900. Used only sparingly, the Tesla was sold to the Fleischman Collection in April 2010 by which time it had covered just 266 miles. It has seen regular but limited use during its dozen years in the collection, showing a mere 928 miles from new at the time of cataloging, and is supported by a digital file of service invoices documenting regular maintenance by Tesla Motors, as well as a clean CARFAX report.
As one of the initial batch of 500 first generation Roadsters produced between March 2008 and May 2009 - indeed, just the 292nd production Tesla ever made - this car boasts a singular appeal, not to mention significant future collector and investment potential. Supported by an enviable service history, most recently brought up to date in March 2022 by marque specialists Executive Motorwerkz of Lawndale, California, it is accompanied by its original hardtop, tools, and charging equipment.