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Insane person places insane price on Tesla Roadster prototype

Jeff Glucker
Motor Authority


The first Tesla model that arrived to delight the eco-friendly was the Roadster. A cool looking all-electric sports car, it rode on the bones of the Lotus Elise. Tesla reportedly built more than 30 development cars for prototyping purposes. Plenty of those were surely crashed in the name of testing, but a few survived. One of the survivors has popped up on eBay, and it's seller thinks its worth a cool million bucks.

This is development car #32. It's now in the hands of a private seller and it shows just under 18,000 miles on its odometer. The seller believes that it's a piece of history (which it is), and that it's worth $1,000,000 today (which it is not). This is a game of guess what the car will be worth in the future, yet the seller thinks he or she can get that much for the car today.

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Taking a quick glance at other Roadsters for sale on eBay, you'll find them ranging in value between $40,000 and up to $80,000. Those certainly aren't rare prototype versions, but that doesn't mean that this car is worth $1MM. The seller is basing that value on the idea that vintage Ferraris sell for many millions, and that we don't even know what a prototype Ferrari would fetch on the open market.

The 11th Ferrari ever built is actually currently for sale, and the price is...well, you're going to have to ask the British Ferrari dealer Talacrest about that as it's not listed. Vintage Ferraris command huge sums of money because they're part of a legacy that's been built up for decades both on the racetrack and the road. Tesla isn't there yet. It's possible it could be in a few decades time, and we'll look back on the early models as valuable time capsules representing the proliferation of the all-electric vehicle.

That day, however, is not today. And this Tesla it not worth a million bucks today.

Maybe in 30 years.

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