If you really want a Tesla Roadster but don't have an extra $111,005 lying around, never fear—you can lease one for just $1,658 a month!
What's more, this could be the first time a car maker has used a planned production hiatus to push sales.
Tesla announced Thursday that it would offer the option to lease the Roadster and Roadster Sport on a three-year, 30,000 mile contract, with $12,453 due at signing. Tesla is the only manufacturer selling an all-electric car in the U.S. The Roadster can travel about 236 miles per charge.
The company stated in a press release that the car's electric motor offers savings on fuel and maintenance—compared to a gas powered car, drivers can save $131 a month, which makes that $1,658 monthly payment totally worth it, right?
There are currently about 900 Roadsters on the highways, and the decision to offer a lease option is likely an attempt to get more on the road, and quick—Tesla is ceasing production of the Roadster in 2011 to focus on its sedan, the Model S (which will be available in 2012). A next-gen Roadster isn't planned until 2013, so unless you rush out to lease one now, you've got a few years to save your pennies.
Or, depending upon the fate of the company itself, you could find yourself behind the wheel of a collector's item.