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Help - Need a Roadster 101 Course

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by bobinfla, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. bobinfla

    bobinfla S-Vin 4086 Rdstr-Vin 0019

    Jul 9, 2012
    Land O'Lakes
    Well my game plan has been to wait for the next generation roadster, figured I could wait and get 3 or 4 more years out of my Miata. But having driven the Model S for two months now (my wife's primary ride), I'm seriously questioning my ability to wait that long to have my own daily drive EV. I keep finding myself on the "Teslas for Sale" thread here and the Tesla Certified pre-owned page over there. Probably not a healthy sign.

    Options are: A) wait for the next "almost Roadster", which I guess is going to be 2+2 seating, so not really a roadster and which I hope will come with a retractable hardtop, but who knows, and would mean I have to wait an eternity. B) Look at the Detroit Electric version that's supposed to be produced starting this summer, but starting at $130 that's a pretty hefty pricetag. C) Go the used Roadster route, which is looking like the likely choice.

    So I have a few questions and would greatly appreciate anyone who can chip in and help steer me right:

    1. In simple words, what's the real difference between the 1.5, 2.0 and 2.5 (and the mysterious 2.25) roadsters? Were there cosmetic changes or actual performance changes? Were there battery/range changes between the versions?

    2. What is the deal with the tops? I know there is a removable hard top that doesn't fit inside the car, and I understand there is a foldup cloth top that can go in the trunk. Do all cars come with both or is it an either-or situation? I'm in Florida, so for 6 months there's no way I can expect to drive to work in the morning and not have a monsoon-like thunderstorm before I make it home 10 hours later. So having just a hard top that would then be off all day long would be a huge problem, so I'm really interested in in the top.

    Thanks in advance for any help
  2. djp

    djp Roadster 2.0 VIN939

    Aug 28, 2011
    Toronto, Canada
  3. markwj

    markwj Moderator, Asia Pacific

    Apr 10, 2011
    Hong Kong

    1.x vs 2.x - electronics (PEM, 12v battery arrangement, etc), styling. 1.x have gear lever and VDS display near door. 2.x have push button gear change and VDS display centre car. 2.x introduced a 'sport' variant with improved performance.

    2.0 vs 2.5 - just body and interior styling.


    Tesla offer soft and hard tops. 3rd party mesh top also available, and recently a 3rd party transparent hard top has become available.

    Soft top is ok for rain, and easy to put on/off. You can put this on/off for a few hours.
    Hard top is very solid, harder to put on/off, and reduces road/wind noise compared to soft top. This is more permanent - typically on for weeks / months at a time. Hard tops can be raw carbon fibre or body color.
    Mesh top offers no rain protection - just shade from the sun with an 'open top' feel.
    Transparent hard top is interesting - looks good, open top feel, but very new.

    The cars came with soft top as standard. Hard top was an optional extra.
  4. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

    Apr 2, 2010
    Ottawa, Canada
    There were other differences than styling between 2.0 and 2.5, such as improved seats, soundproofing, and PEM. But some of the later 2.0's have those upgrades too. 2.25 is a 2.0 that has been converted to 2.5 styling.
  5. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

    Aug 20, 2006
    Silicon Valley
    With regards to performance, the 1.5s were similar to the non-sport 2.0s and 2.5s.
    The Sport version (either 2.0 or 2.5) has a bit more low end torque, so can do 0-60 in 3.7 instead of 3.9
    The Sport version also has an adjustable suspension that lets you tune for more aggressive handling.

    They tried to make the cars more comfortable and refined over time. For instance, the last of the 2.5s were more quiet, had a bigger audio/nav screen, more comfortable seats, etc.
    Lots of little incremental improvements along the way.

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