CEO Martin Eberhard is an electrical engineer, so he's qualified to describe the 284-horsepower 3-phase, 4-pole AC induction motor that will power the revolutionary Tesla Roadster
. Eberhard's most recent blog covers the development of the motor, starting with Nikola Tesla's
original patents from 1888. As you'll discover in this information-packed story, the key to making the Roadster capable of 4-second 0-60 runs is developing a proprietary method of manufacturing copper rotors. Most AC induction motors, especially those in appliances, have aluminum rotors to save production costs. Even those made from copper, Eberhard found, would be too inefficient for the Roadster, so he hired engineers to develop a new motor and manufacturing process. The motors, as well as the battery packs that power the motor, will be built in Taiwan.
Source: Martin Eberhard/Tesla Motors]