The Coronavirus (COVID-19) has had a lasting and unchanging impact on just about every possible aspect of life, including automobile production. COVID-19’s reach even included innovative billionaire business magnate, entrepreneur and engineer, Elon Musk and his Tesla production plans.
Of course, the pandemic did not prevent the release of Tesla’s Pandemic Special Convertible, though Musk revealed in an interview with Joe Rogan that other production plans were altered to accommodate the crisis.
Elon Musk meets new challenges in Tesla production plans
A recent interview with Elon Musk on The Joe Rogan Experience provides electric auto enthusiasts interested in future Tesla products with some insight into how Tesla plans to meet the challenges posed by government-imposed limitations due to COVID-19.
The lengthy podcast left few stones unturned, finally turning to Tesla production around two hours into the interview with Joe asking when he could get his hands on the new Roadster.
Musk stumbles a bit responding to his question, because COVID-19 has thrown Tesla for a loop, setting back production plans. There is cause for concern as analysts have speculated about Tesla’s capacity to survive COVID-19.
Elon Musk said the Cybertruck will come before Roadster
In speaking about Tesla’s production plan, Musk mentions Model-Y production, developmental work on voltage packages and Shanghai factory expansion as priorities, and then he drops another surprise.
Tesla will lead with Cybertruck before producing the new Roadster, which is disappointing to those eager for the Roadster, but a logical step as Musk positions to insert Tesla into the small truck market.
Musk looks at Roadster like “dessert,” noting that other more foundational models take priority. Because of some enhanced developments of packages included in Roadster like a tri-motor powertrain and a lot of advanced technology that he terms as “unfair.”
Other Tesla production secrets are out in the open
Unplugged Performance, APEX is taking over various design features for Tesla’s Model S contributing a number of enhancements, including a wider base, wider tires, advanced suspension, addition of carbon fiber, and jazzier interior design choices. The end result will be greater luxury and performance.
Elon Musk remained evasive about performance testing at Germany’s Nürburgring, noting that Tesla would save the data for the unveiling. With reports by ExtremeTech indicating that a modified Model S lapped the Nürburgring this week in 7 minutes, 23 seconds, one has to wonder what is coming with the Roadster. There were some hints into what we might expect “speed wise” as the interview continues.
Elon Musk revealed software improvements to the Ludicrous Mode, which currently performs a zero-to-sixty acceleration in 1.9 seconds. The software improvements include a “cheetah stance,” rocking the car back like a sprinter ready to accelerate, which shaves off 1/10 of a second of Tesla’s zero-to-sixty time.
The intention of Tesla is to shave another half-second from Roadster’s time using engineering borrowed from the rocket world.
Dent-proof body design on Cybertruck
While Musk explained what was behind the failed bullet-proof glass breakage test on the Cybertruck, he provided insight into an additional design feature, which include a dent-proof outer-body design.
There were a few Tesla features and plans not discussed, like prepaid self-driving features, but all-in-all, some pretty cool planned enhancements and technologies were brought out into the open during Musk’s chat with Joe Rogan.
Tesla’s future production plans are encouraging in spite of the pandemic
Though the COVID-19 pandemic has delayed production goals, it appears that Tesla is not on the economic chopping block as predicted. Major takeaways from the interview included Model Y production and expansion of the Shanghai plant as priorities, indicating that plans are to step-up Tesla’s production rather than back it down.
The roadster is taking a back-seat to Cybertruck, which will have some pretty awesome features of its own. However, given the production and design secrets Musk brought out into the open, Roadster will be worth the wait.