The first flying car you can buy might be a Tesla Roadster

Jet Sanchez
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Elon Musk has once again stirred excitement and scepticism with his latest X (formerly Twitter) proclamation: the forthcoming Tesla Roadster will be able to "fly."

While Musk's tweets are often a mix of audacious vision and provocative marketing, this claim has sparked renewed curiosity about Tesla's high-end sports car.

Details, however, remain sparse, leaving many to wonder if "flying" might simply denote unprecedented speed.

A long-awaited arrival

 2025 Tesla Roadster New Zealand

For those needing a refresher, the Tesla Roadster was first unveiled during the Semi and Roadster event in 2017.

Positioned as Tesla's flagship model, it serves as a modern successor to the original 2008 Roadster, which was based on the Lotus Elise platform and marked Tesla's ambitious entry into the electric vehicle (EV) market.

Initially expected to launch in 2020, the Roadster's release has been beset by delays, a hallmark of many Tesla projects.

Unmatched speed

Elon Musk Tesla Roadster flight

When first announced, the Roadster's claimed acceleration of 0-100 km/h in 1.9 seconds was jaw-dropping.

Fast forward to today, and this figure, while still impressive, has been matched or surpassed by rivals like the Lucid Air and the Aspark Owl, both achieving sub-2-second times.

In 2021, Musk upped the ante, suggesting that with a SpaceX option package, the Roadster could achieve an astonishing 1.1-second sprint to 100 km/h.

This package would incorporate approximately ten small rocket thrusters, arranged around the car to enhance acceleration and braking, fuelling speculation that the Roadster might indeed take flight—if only momentarily.

Production and pricing uncertainties

2025 Tesla Roadster New Zealand

Despite Musk's assurances that the Roadster will be officially unveiled later this year and enter production next year, Tesla's track record for meeting deadlines prompts caution.

Originally priced at US$200,000 (around NZ$326k), the Roadster's cost has since been removed from Tesla's website, hinting at a potential price increase.

As enthusiasts and sceptics alike await more concrete information, the promise of a 'flying' Roadster remains a tantalising prospect.

Whether Musk's vision will materialise or remain another chapter in his narrative of ambitious claims remains to be seen.

What is certain, however, is that the Tesla Roadster continues to capture the imagination, blending cutting-edge tech with the timeless dream of defying gravity.

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