One would never mistake a shiny new tech-filled Tesla Motors dealership for a used-car lot, but with several years worth of Teslas already on the road, that notion is about to get very real. Those retreads will be pretty rarified, though.

The California-based electric-vehicle maker is starting a buyback program in which owners of the company's first car, the Roadster, can trade it in for credit against the purchase of a Model S sedan, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

Tesla made about 2,500 Roadsters, with chassis bits provided by Lotus, between 2008 and 2011. The company estimates that it could sell Roadsters for anywhere from about $73,000 for a four-year-old model to about $93,000 for a 2010 model with low miles. Owners paid upwards of $109,000 when they were new.

Either way, owners would get a credit against the purchase of a Model S, which started production earlier this year. The newer cars sell for anywhere between about $50,000 and $100,0000, after federal tax credits.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 28 Comments
      Ben Doolittle
      • 2 Years Ago
      Keep 'em, future classics for sure.
        GoodCheer
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Ben Doolittle
        I have to agree. I just can't see 50 years from now that one of only 2500 Roadsters produced won't be a very desirable collectible. You already see some smashed up on eBay, so what's the remaining worldwide supply? And how does that supply compare to its significance to personal transportation?
          mcdull
          • 2 Years Ago
          @GoodCheer
          Even that is true, it's still the game for the rich. You have to factor in the now purchase price, the cost of additional garage space, maintanance and etc for next 20+ years. Also unlike fuel engine which can possibly run for a long life, lithium battery has shelf life that you might need to replace every 10 years or it's just showpiece.
      • 2 Years Ago
      How much will yo sell me a used Roadster for?
      Andrew Richard Rose
      • 2 Years Ago
      One of the last ten Tesla Roadsters was recently for sale in Germany for 175,000 euros !
        Peter
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Andrew Richard Rose
        Instant classic!
          Ashton
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Peter
          why is that line a classic? BTW, that is almost 229k (for us Americans)
          sirvixisvexed
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Peter
          He's saying the *car* is an instant classic
        knodoctor
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Andrew Richard Rose
        as they say, a (damned) fool and his money are soon parted. Or as I call it, the "separation theorem"...LOL
      askroon
      • 2 Years Ago
      I'm so tired of hearing the whole "$50,000 after tax credits" thing. Tell me the actual price I will pay at the dealership, please.
        paulwesterberg
        • 2 Years Ago
        @askroon
        You have a computer - you don't even need to visit a dealer - just design one online and select the package options you want and it will tally up the price for you: http://www.teslamotors.com/models/design Tesla has a waiting list of people who want their cars, not a bunch of dealers with new cars rusting on the lot so there is no price negotiation or haggling etc. The whole buying process is very transparent.
      Ashton
      • 2 Years Ago
      do yall think Tesla will stick with their proprietary plug now that the SAE has settled on their new J1772 combo plug? http://www.gizmag.com/sae-j1772-combo-plug-standard/24607/
        Letstakeawalk
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Ashton
        Tesla will be more than happy to sell their customers an adapter.
        Giza Plateau
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Ashton
        Yes. No one has implemented any yet and Elon Musk expressed his disapproval of the existing and coming plugs as reason for doing their own. And theirs is indeed much better. You can see it demonstrated here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sYzY5_RkT7w
          Roy_H
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Giza Plateau
          Thanks for the link. That really is slick. Once you understand how their system works, then you realize that it is far more convenient than the alternatives.
      knodoctor
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hold on to your Teslas. In a few years (or months?) they could become very collectible and dominate Orphan Car shows!
      raktmn
      • 2 Years Ago
      Will Tesla offer extended warranties on certified pre-owned Roadsters like other car makers? That would greatly increase their resale values, and help make the whole program even more successful.
      sirvixisvexed
      • 2 Years Ago
      Great time to throw in a refurbished battery and new battery warranty before reselling them, Tesla! Anything to keep them on the roads longer.
      American Refugee
      • 2 Years Ago
      One of my neighbors has a roadster that they park on the street, and every time I see it I think, man, in a few years I might actually be able to pick up a gently used one! Then I keep pedaling my bike.
      Bob
      • 2 Years Ago
      So by the time the dealer tries to jerk you around on the trade-in value you might get what, 50-60k for a 3 year old roadster that sold well over 100 grand new?
        Jeff N
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Bob
        Well, 60% of original value for a 3-year-old sports car is not bad at all. I think you'd find it to be in-line with the depreciation of gasoline sports cars. I just did a quick search on the depreciation of a 911 Cabriolet and the Tesla value was on par, if not slightly better, than the projected value of a used 911 Cab after 3 year on a percentage basis.
        methos1999
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Bob
        And this is different from all other car dealers how?
        Nick Allain
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Bob
        I take the opposite point of view on it - if you want a tesla roadster and you can guy one re-certified by tesla? AWESOME.
          otiswild
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Nick Allain
          Especially if they refresh weaker battery cells..
        raktmn
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Bob
        2009 Jaguar XKR, priced are around $105,000 when new with typical options. Asking price on cars.com now ranges from $45K to 65K. Trade-in is probably at least 10-15K less than those asking prices. The Roadster trade-in/resale looks pretty good compared to that. I'm sure there are examples that are both better and worse, but this just proves the old adage that buying a new car is not an "investment".
      Rick
      • 2 Years Ago
      Roadster looks an absolute classic appeals to me that would win me over to buying Tesla EVs if l had that sort of money to burn, but the S sedan is just one of those cars that just does not appeal to me in anyway what so ever apart from technically better which could have been fed into the roadster. If l owned a roadster l would hang onto it, its a fast appreciating future classic.
      Roy_H
      • 2 Years Ago
      The price quoted for a used Roadster seem unreasonably high to me. But I see that there are 4 low mileage 2008 Roadsters for sale on cars.com for $70k. Even the highest mileage cars listed have only 14k miles. I would think that a high mileage Roadster would be considerably less.
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