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With the Roadster, Cybertruck, and Semi, Tesla has a growing group of important electric vehicles in queue and overdue.
STEPHEN EDELSTEIN SEPTEMBER 2, 2021
Tesla CEO Elon Musk on Wednesday confirmed delays for one of the company's most-anticipated new vehicles. The second-generation Tesla Roadster has been delayed to 2023, Musk confirmed via Twitter. It's also unlikely that we'll see Cybertruck production start on schedule.
Musk said chip shortages were the problem, claiming they were holding up the launch of new products.
The Roadster was originally revealed in November 2017 and due by 2020. At the time, Musk quoted impressive specifications, including 0-60 mph in 1.9 seconds, a 250-mph top speed, and 620 miles of range from a 250-kwh battery pack.
Tesla almost immediately began accepting $50,000 reservations for the standard Roadster, which has a $200,000 price tag. To get one of the first Founders Series models, customers have to put up that version's full $250,000 price.
However, Tesla's battery claims for both the Roadster and Semi (which was unveiled alongside the Roadster) puzzled analysts. As the Roadster's planned 2020 launch drew closer, Musk also admitted that engineering work wouldn't be finished in time, but doubled down on bold claims. Earlier this year he teased rocket tech for the Roadster and said that Tesla was "finishing engineeing" in 2021, followed by production in 2022.
The Roadster and Semi aren't the only products that have been on hold well beyond their original due dates. Tesla's order page and customer communications have indicated for a couple of months that first Cybertruck deliveries will happen in early 2022, not late 2021.
Musk had already hinted in July that the Model Y “obviously does take priority over the Cybertruck”—referring to the ramp at the company's Texas plant, where Model Y production will follow a new cast-body process.
At least the Roadster, Semi, and Cybertruck are still ostensibly in the queue for production. Earlier this year, Tesla abruptly cancelled the Model S Plaid+ ahead of its launch event. This range-topping model was supposed to combine the performance of the Model S Plaid with a 520-mile range.