Watch the 'Tesla SpaceX Hypercar' with SpaceX boosters - it will blow your mind
Courtesy of Maximilian Schneider
Hi there Tesla lovers, Elon Musk fanboys, and hypercar enthusiasts, we come bearing exciting news for you. A designer has just implemented SpaceX rocket boosters to a Tesla Roadster concept car.
The Tesla SpaceX Model R Hypercar idea was made by Max Schneider, a young automotive designer who lives in Japan, and it has to be one of the most intriguing fan projects ever to bear the badge even though there is no clear indication of the Tesla Roadster's release date.
The concept vehicle provides an answer to the question of what would happen if Elon Musk's idea of rocket boosters were actually implemented, using the knowledge and brand recognition of SpaceX to produce an extravagant rocket-supported electric car with distinctive features and abilities.
The Model R produces 2,600 horsepower in total and reaches a top speed of 290 mph (467 kph) under short burst loads (2,950 horsepower and 326 mph (526 kph) for the more severe racing variant, respectively). It is propelled by ecologically friendly liquid hydrogen propellant.
The automobile has a high degree of changeable downforce due to its unique boosters above each axis that separately press down each wheel, allowing it to turn at up to 4G.
The street and race versions reach 62 mph in 1.9 seconds (100 kph).
Due to the car's extremely advanced packaging, its total weight, when filled with fluids, is approximately 4,784 pounds (2,170 kg). This is due to the interaction between the batteries, thrusters, and rocket propellant. The Model R's projected range is 317 miles with a maximum capacity of 115 kWh (510 kilometers). However, it is just a tenth of that distance in rocket mode.
Schneider, who has worked at Design Studios from Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, Mitsubishi, and Hiphi, answered our questions.
Interesting Engineering: You are a professional car designer. How did you decide to bring Tesla and SpaceX together for a hypercar?
I thought that it was a logical connection. Elon Musk owns both companies, and I’m sure there are technological synergies. Also, it is common for many car brands to have performance subbrands, and I thought it would be a lovely metamorphosis to add SpaceX's influence into the mix. It definitely helps that I’m a huge space fan and am always watching the live streams of the falcon rockets going up and down again.
IE: What is your main motivation for this project?
For a long time, I’ve been planning to do my own YouTube channel since I want to bring car design closer to people that are maybe interested in it but have no direct connection. I want to create small little projects that are also entertaining and, thus, sometimes also maybe a bit over the top or more on the visionary side. I think both Tesla and SpaceX have a great following of enthusiasts, me included, so it was only natural to start with a project like this. Creating it was great fun, and I learned quite a bit along the way!
IE: What do you think about Elon Musk, and did you get inspired by his vision for this project?
Contrary to many people's beliefs, I think that he is quite a self-reflective person, and obviously, he has a huge determination and drive, which is inspiring. I also like his taste in memes, which makes him quite “approachable” and human. Additionally, I definitely respect his attitude towards openly saying what is on his mind and being more direct in his statements. He clearly has the X-factor and isn't where he is just based on luck! Regarding the project, it definitely helped define the direction and vision based on what Elon had to say before the future of the Tesla Roadster and its functions. The Tesla SpaceX model R is basically the essence of the Roadster multiplied by a 100 with a large seasoning of SpaceX on top.
IE: How will this project continue?
I will keep developing small projects like this on my YouTube channel and try to broaden the horizon with every project I do. There are going to be all kinds of vehicles in every possible direction and imagination. However, if one specific project has a high incentive to be developed further, I will do so in a future episode. I want to keep it interesting for the viewer, so there will be a lot of variation.
IE: Can you share some technical details of the design
Sure. A bit more obvious are the central pieces of the car, namely the two rocket boosters on the back. They are liquid hydrogen-fuelled and take quite a bit of space, package-wise. That's why the Model R has only one centrally positioned seat. The car has a very long wheelbase to accommodate high-speed stability. Additional down-facing micro thrusters above each wheel can give independent downforce for cornering and braking at any speed. Every corner of the car is about speed, which is why no millimeter is wasted for comfort.
IE: Do you think it is doable?
Theoretically speaking, yes, I think the concept of the car is doable in a broader sense. Obviously, there would be slight issues getting road homologation, and in general, I think it wouldn't be a good idea to let a giant fire hazard onto the road. But it is a bit like Elon selling flamethrowers - they don't really make sense, they're a bit dangerous, you don't save the world with them by any means - but they're also really cool. The youtube channel is supposed to be a creative outlet with no boundaries, which is why a rocket car was a good choice to start the channel.
IE: Is there anything you want to add?
Firstly I'd like to apologize to all the engineers reading this and finding 1000 reasons why the idea is stupid and not working — I do always appreciate constructive criticism, though!
I also would like to thank all the people that continuously subscribe and comment on the video with all the kind words and support. It really means a lot to me and encourages me to create more content for everyone interested! There are a lot of cool projects done and in the pipeline coming soon on the channel.