Compared with the radical power delivery, there are fewer novelties with the Tesla Roadster’s ride and handling. In short, it behaves very much like an Elise carrying an additional 385kg.
While it is fair to say this certainly doesn’t benefit the magic Lotus blend of suppleness and agility, the end result is not the disaster you might expect. The Tesla will still canter around any given bend at considerable pace, with outright grip levels not far short of that produced by an Elise, and its behaviour is reasonably docile for a mid-engined car.
Where the Tesla struggles is through sudden direction changes, where the transferring weight is all too obvious. The additional mass is also evident through the steering, which is markedly heavier than in any Lotus product, and not just when parking.
As a consequence, the Tesla, while still brisk cross-country, demands a different, more measured driving style to that of the Elise. Where the Lotus can be worked through a corner, fluidly balancing grip with power, the Tesla benefits from a ‘slow in, fast out’ approach. Try too hard and it feels like you’re fighting the Tesla Roadster.
Weight also takes its toll on the Roadster’s ride, which, although not uncomfortable, has none of the suppleness of its Lotus relatives.