Duke Energy is introducing its customers to electric vehicles with a $120,000 pocket rocket that shoots from zero to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds.
Duke leased its Tesla Roadster Sport about a month ago and will show it off to the public at community events, conferences and so on. The sleek sports car is at the luxe end of EV production that will include the Chevy Volt, to be released in October, followed by the Nissan Leaf rollout early next year.
Mike Rowand, Duke’s technology strategy director, guided the silver Tesla onto Interstate 240 this afternoon – then, ever so briefly, floored it. The car instantly leapt to full torque with a not-quite-silent whine, pressing a passenger’s back into the black leather seat.
“You come away with a Tesla smile” with that kind of acceleration, Rowand said. Regenerative braking quickly slowed the car, capturing the energy normally lost in braking and storing it in the lithium-ion batteries.