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TEST DRIVE: Inhabitat Takes the Tesla Roadster for a Spin in Silicon Valley
The day was hot and the car was very, very fast. Electric cars have all of their power available to you at all times, so if you want to, say, take the car from 0-40 in two seconds, your lungs will simply wrap themselves around your spine and you’re off. Or say you wanted to take the car from 40-90. No problem. Done in another two seconds. Suffice it to say, this is a fun car to drive on the winding roads of the Los Altos Hills and Palo Alto. Caveat: Please note that driving a Tesla Roadster may result in involuntary hysterical laughter.
But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Before we even took the Tesla Roadster out for a drive (they gave us the optioned out car Tesla CEO Elon Musk drives when he’s in town), we were given a tour of the facilities. Tesla will soon be expanding operations to the former NUMMI plant in Fremont across the Bay, but for now, all powertrains are made at the Tesla headquarters before and after Lotus has their way with the car bodies. Tesla makes 9 powertrains per day in this facility. Each one includes 6831 battery cells, and each battery cell must be tested for quality. That’s and intensive job, but the work environment appeared pleasant enough. Tesla’s manufacturing floor is housed in an old HP facility, and the floors just could not be any whiter or shinier. The “factory” is as clean and quiet as the end product.
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