Is Tesla's First Car The Best One To Buy Used?

Editorial

People may have forgotten about the Tesla Roadster, and we can kind of see why.

Tesla has come a long way since 2008. Not even a decade ago, it was just starting out with its first model, the Roadster. This car was pretty impressive, garnering attention from celebrities like George Clooney and Leonardo DiCaprio. Fast forward to today and Tesla has two models with a third on the way, and all of them are faster than the Roadster. The original Roadster produced 248 horsepower, which was later increased to 288. The little car could hit 60 mph in 3.9 seconds, or 3.7 with the more powerful motor.

This is a far cry from the most recent Model S P90D which can hit 60 mph in just 2.8 seconds with "ludicrous mode." The Model S and Model X have also improved greatly in build quality since the original Roadster. The Roadster received some upgrades during its life, but still felt kind of hand-built (in a bad way).

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So why do we think that the Roadster is worth buying? It is not the cheapest Tesla that you can currently buy. High mileage 2013 Model S sedans undercut the cheapest Roadsters by a few thousand dollars. Still, the cheapest Roadsters from 2008 are available for around $55,000. You may be getting a more practical car with the Model S, but the Roadster still has its benefits. You may want the more powerful Roadster, but even the original 2008 model can hit 60 mph in 3.9 seconds. That is even faster than the brand-new 718 Boxster S which takes 4 seconds with the PDK and Sport Chrono Package. Plus, the 718 Boxster S starts at $68,400 - and that is before you go crazy with options.

For less than the Porsche, you even find the newer Roadster with the more powerful motor and the 3.7 second 0-60 time. Unless you are blind, you may have noticed a lot more Teslas on the roads. However, not many of these are Roadsters. Only 2,450 examples were sold around the world. Unlike the Model S, the Roadster may be looked at as a future collectible. It was low volume, fun to drive, and the very first car from a now dominant car company. If you are looking to get into a Tesla, but can't afford the $70,000 base price of the current Model S or don't want to wait for the Model 3, the Roadster may be the car for you!

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