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Warp Drive: Brabus-Tuned Tesla Roadster From The Essen Motor Show

Posted in Alt Fuels, Bizarre, Car Accessories, Car Tech, Custom, Design, Electric Cars, Exotic Cars, Expensive Cars, Fast Cars, Materials, Press Release, Roadster, Tesla by Vito Rispo | November 13th, 2008 | 2 Responses |

Ultra high-performance aftermarket tuning company Brabus took some time off from tweaking the innards of Mercedes and Maybach cars. They got together with Tesla and produced a decked out Tesla Roadster for the 2008 Essen Motor Show.

Apparently, Brabus doesn’t know how to tweak an electric motor so they just pimped out everything else. There’s a high-quality matte white paintjob and a futuristic lighting package installed under all the new carbon fiber bits and a series of daytime running lights installed in the grille. The sides of the Roadster have entrance lights that can be activated with the key fob or by pulling on a door handle. There’s carbon-fiber everywhere, carbon-fiber air inlets, carbon-fiber rear wing and carbon-fiber rear diffuser. All good stuff.

But the wildest part by far is the ‘space sound generator‘. Check it out along with some more pictures and the press release:

In case you didn’t know, electric cars like the Tesla Roadster are near silent, their electric motor doesn’t have the little explosions going on inside like an internal combustion engine does. So Brabus did what a few hybrid and EV makers have been thinking about doing for a while now, they manufactured a sound. The space sound generator allows the driver of the Brabus tuned Roadster to choose from four different simulated engine sounds: a typical V8 combustion engine, a racecar engine, and two “futuristic soundscapes” Brabus calls “Beam” and “Warp”. That’s right, warp drive. The volume of the sound actually depends on the power output of the electric motor, which means it’ll be louder if you’re going faster, mimicking how the real sound would behave.

Also worth noting, the rims and tires are a custom-tailored combination designed to improve handling. The wheels are Brabus Monoblock S light-alloy, 18 inches in the front, 19 inches in the back; both with Pirelli P Zero Nero high-performance tires fitted on them. Brabus totally did up the interior too. The company has a special in-house upholstery shop that handcrafts custom interiors. The Roadster got a combination of perforated lightweight leather and Alcantara (Ultrasuede) with white seams to match the exterior color. Even the floor is upholstered with lightweight leather. Hott.

Press Release:

The Very First Tuned Electric Car Comes From BRABUS:
BRABUS Customization Program for the Tesla Roadster

The first tuned electric car comes from BRABUS: The first project of the future cooperation between Tesla Motors, Inc. and the new BRABUS business division Zero Emission celebrates its world debut at the 2008 Essen Motor Show. BRABUS presents an exclusive customization program for the Tesla Roadster, the world’s first electrically powered production sports car.

The new BRABUS logo with added lightning bolt is the trademark of BRABUS Zero Emission vehicles.

To give the sports car a more exciting sound the BRABUS electronics specialists have developed a ‘space sound generator.’ The occupants on-board the Tesla Roadsters can choose from several simulated engine sounds including that of a typical V8 combustion engine, a racecar engine and two futuristic soundscapes named ‘Beam’ and ‘Warp.’ The volume of the sound is dependent on the momentary power output of the electric motor.

A custom-tailored BRABUS tire/wheel combination further improves handling characteristics. The two-seater is refined with weight-optimized BRABUS Monoblock S light-alloy wheels in size 7Jx18 in front and in size 8.5Jx19 in back. BRABUS technology partner Pirelli provides the corresponding P Zero Nero high-performance tires in size 215/35 ZR 18 in front and in size 255/30 ZR 19 on the rear axle. These tires were developed to deliver minimum rolling resistance.

The two-seater also receives an even more striking exterior at BRABUS. The customization measures include a special high-quality ‘matte white’ paintjob. To give the mid-engine sports car an even more enticing face the BRABUS designers treat the front apron to a lightweight carbon-fiber front lip and daytime running lights integrated into the front grille. Matte-white surrounds for the headlamps add interesting detail to the overall effect.

The sides of the Tesla are upgraded with BRABUS entrance lights shaped like futuristic space lights. They are activated with the keyless fob or by pulling on a door handle. BRABUS carbon-fiber air inlets add even more sporty flair. Immediately apparent in the rear are the BRABUS rear wing and the BRABUS rear diffuser, both made from light yet extremely strong carbon fiber. The round taillights are accentuated further by matte-white applications.

The BRABUS customization program for the Tesla Roadster also includes exclusive interior options. The range of products starts with scuff plates with illuminated BRABUS logo. They are integrated into the top of the rocker panels.

The company-own BRABUS upholstery shop masterfully handcrafts exquisite custom interiors for the Tesla. The designers chose a combination of especially soft yet durable BRABUS perforated lightweight leather and Alcantara. The cockpit features white seams to reflect the exterior color. The vehicle floor is also upholstered with lightweight leather for added exclusivity.

The goal of the BRABUS customization concept for the Tesla Roadster is to define a potential limited edition as well as an individual tuning program for the Tesla driver.

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2 Responses

  1. mena says:

    The end times are near when Brabus, most known for their HORSEPOWER upgrades for Mercedes Benz, turns to cosmetic upgrades on an electric car. I guess judging a book by its cover will become the norm in the near to far future.

  2. Jamie says:

    I’m sure people will think the ability to have customisable piped sounds is just a frill – but in fact it’s very useful and should probably be made mandatory.

    In China there are electric scooters now everywhere, as in some towns the petrol ones have been outlawed. (As have plastic bags – you know the Chinese are really doing some smart things these days.)

    As a result there’s been a surprising number of pedestrian accidents; these things have zero engine noise. (In fact you can’t actually tell it’s turned on until you twist the throttle and it moves – I got shocked the first time I rode one.)

    A scooter is one thing; it’s low mass, they have a top speed of 40 – 60 kph depending on model and rider and the front is soft plastic or fibreglass.

    But an entire electric car is another thing. Accidents with electric scooters would become fatalities with electric cars.

    I hope they look into this soon.