• Oct 29th 2009 at 8:03AM
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Simon Hackett and co-driver Emilis Prelgauskas with the record setting Roadster - click above for high-res image gallery

It's no secret that how you drive influences a vehicle's efficiency. Case in point: This week's Global Green Challenge in Australia where Simon Hackett shipped his 2008 Tesla Roadster down under and proceeded to set a new world record for a production battery-powered vehicle. Hackett and co-driver Emilis Prelgauskas managed to squeeze 313 miles out of the lithium ion battery pack of the Roadster.

As the drivers crossed the finish line, approximately three miles was left on the charge at the end of the run south from Alice Springs. That easily topped the 241-mile run by another Roadster earlier this year in the Rallye Monte Carlo d'Energies Alternatives and the 244 miles the car achieves on the EPA test cycle.

Of course, achieving those kinds of range numbers means completely forgoing the performance capabilities of the Roadster, just as it would in any other sports car. The 0-60 in 3.9 seconds and 244 mile range is an either/or choice, you sadly can't have both. Tesla's press release is after the jump.

[Source: Tesla]


Tesla Roadster travels 313 miles on a single charge in what appears to be new world record

Competing in Australia's Global Green Challenge, Customer Simon Hackett's red Roadster goes from Alice Springs to Coober Pedy with 3 miles left on the charge.

Coober Pedy, South Australia -- (Oct. 27, 2009) – Tesla Roadster owner Simon Hackett and co-driver Emilis Prelgauskas completed 313 miles (501 km) in a Tesla Roadster on a single charge – a distance that appears to set a new record for a production electric vehicle.

Hackett and Prelgauskas are driving Hackett's red 2008 Roadster as part of the 10th annual Global Green Challenge, one of the most high-profile rallies worldwide for alternative fuel cars. Hackett is providing updates in real time on his blog.

The pair drove from Alice Springs, in the Australian Northern Territory, to the finish marker at a point 183 km north of Coober Pedy, in South Australia. They had an estimated 3 miles left on the charge at the finish marker.

The previous distance record for an electric vehicle was set in April, when another Roadster was the only vehicle to complete the entire, 241-mile Rallye Monte Carlo d'Energies Alternatives. It had an estimated 38 miles left on the charge.

The Tesla Roadster is the first production automobile to use lithium-ion battery cells and the first production EV with a range greater than 200 miles (320 km) per charge. Tesla has delivered about 900 Roadsters to customers so far.

Hackett sent Tesla the following note before going to bed last night:

"Emilis and I have decades of experience flying gliders competitively and we applied the same energy conservation techniques to our driving, with significant results! The car had about 3 miles of range left when the drive was completed. We travelled 501km on a single charge. Let that sink in for a minute.

"The security seal was applied to the charge port door when we started the journey. As this is being done as part of the Global Green Challenge, we have a full set of official verifiers here who will attest to the results and to achieving the outcome. We were followed along the journey by our support crew and a documentary film crew - so we have it on film.

"It's late here and we have another 541k to drive (with an intermediate charge stop) tomorrow - and another two days of the event left after that. When we're done, we will have driven over 3000 km's in the Roadster over the course of only six days, from Darwin to Adelaide.

About Tesla

Tesla Motors' goal is to produce increasingly affordable cars to mainstream buyers – relentlessly driving down the cost of EVs. San Carlos, Calif.-based Tesla sells cars online and has delivered about 900 Roadsters to customers. Tesla operates galleries in California's Silicon Valley and Los Angeles; New York; Seattle; Boulder, Colorado; London and Munich.

Tesla achieved overall corporate profitability in July, thanks to strong demand for the Roadster. The all-electric sports car is faster than Porsche 911 or Audi R8 yet is six times as efficient as conventional sports cars. Tesla services cars in its galleries and through "house calls" so owners can enjoy hassle-free service without leaving their home or office.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Tesla is a battery pack on wheels. Lots of amp/hrs are available at that price. A mega amount of very expensive batteries to propel a very small car.
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's even more amazing that they have to use laptop batteries. Why don't we hear more about the large format battery BS?
      • 5 Years Ago
      which is the area code of Detroit-funny and interesting!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Gee, I went 304 miles (Really, breaking it in) on my 09 v8 M3, and It took 3 min. for a charge at the pump. BFD Telsa. I will stick to IC.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I can't wait until the day when we chuckle at this accomplishment like we now laugh about "a whopping 1 MEGAbyte of memory" in our 90's-era computers.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I want to know at what speed they did this at. The Tesla has a fixed gear single motor so at higher speeds there is no way this car would of been able to do 300 miles.
      • 5 Years Ago
      "where Simon Hackett shipped his 2008 Tesla Roadster down under"

      this is wrong. simon hacket is an australian, a bit of an electric car nut, and has owned this car in australia for a fair while, well before this event.

      • 5 Years Ago
      very cool.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Now they just need a 313 mile long extension cord and 8 hours to wait for a recharge...
      • 5 Years Ago
      The lead photo isn't good PR. Looks kinda bleak out there. Tell them next time to run out of juice close to a coffee shop or a juice bar at least.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Thats what inland Australia is like, not much to see see unlike you like lots of flat red dirt. And why I always chuckle when visitors ask about doing a drive to Alice Springs... better off flying there... then its another 4 hours trip to get to the Rock lol
      • 5 Years Ago
      "Cam someone tow me home now?"
      • 5 Years Ago
      And now, after 313, you call a tow truck and get your tesla towed to your home. How useful!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Gee, it's nice and warm in Aussie right now. Try that feat while driving through Canada in the winter and then we'll talk.
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