When it debuted, the Roadster was a pretty ground-breaking vehicle. The base model, the first of four that were produced, featured a range of 244 miles on a full charge and an electric motor that was good for 248 hp and 200 pound-feet of torque. The chassis and body were based on a Lotus Elise/Exige architecture -- Lotus provided the motorless "gliders" for Tesla.
The debut base model and the upgraded Roadster 1.5, the first of which rolled out in 2008, could make the sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.6 seconds and had a top speed of 125 mph. The base model started at $109,000, an attractive purchase for reasonably well-funded fans of electric cars. Roadster 2.0, the second version of the model, dialed up the power to 248 hp and 280 pound-feet of torque while keeping the range at 244 miles.
The big leap with the first-gen Roadster came with Roadster 2.5 and 2.5 Sport, which served up 288 hp along with a top torque output of 295 pound-feet in the Sport model. These later variants also featured slightly revised styling front and back. By this time the Roadster featured a single-speed BorgWarner transmission, in contrast to the two-speed transmission of the debut model. Zero-to-60-mph sprints were down to 3.7 seconds, but the price was up to $128,500 for the top 2.5 Sport, which offered improved noise insulation, new seats and a larger 7-inch optional touchscreen infotainment system.
Four versions of just the first-generation Roadster makes it sound like there were a lot of these cars out there, but production for all versions combined topped out at around 2,450. The Roadster may have been offered in a lot of flavors over half a decade, but it was a very exclusive car even by the metric of the Model S.