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Tesla Roadster runs for 241 miles in Monte Carlo e-rally

On a single charge of the battery, too

'Leccy Tech As an answer to those who say e-cars will never take off because their range is limited, this isn't at all bad. A Tesla Roadster managed to cover 241 miles on a single charge while taking part in the Rallye Monte Carlo d'Energies Alternatives.

Organised by the Automobile Club of Monaco, the annual rally is open to cars powered by just about any 'alternative' fuel source, such as LPG, ethanol or even petrol-powered hybrid drives.

The rally course runs 390km (241 miles) from the town of Valance in France to the Principality of Monaco and covers a mixture of trunk roads, motorways and single-carriageway roads that wind through the mountains.

This year's all-electric entrants included a Ruf-modified Porsche 911 and a handful of Mitsubishi iMiEVs but it was the Tesla that stole the e-car laurels by managing to get cross the finishing line with an indicated 61km (38 miles) of juice left in the battery pack.

That would give the Roadster a theoretical maximum touring range of nearly 280 miles – 36 miles more than Tesla itself reckons the car will cover on a charge.

If the numbers stand up to official scrutiny, Tesla will hold the world record for the longest distance travelled by a production electric car on a single charge.

Of course, it should be pointed out that the Tesla was driven by a company staffer doubtless practised in eking out every last mile from a charge, and that the speeds averaged on the run were hardly blistering – 90kph (56mph) on the motorways, 60kph (37mph) on trunk roads and 30kph (19) in the mountain roads. Tesla reckon the average speed for the entire journey was 45kph (28mph).

After a day spent proving the Tesla's economy and range, the car was handed over to former F1 driver Heinz-Harald Frentzen who took it for a thrash around one of the Monte Carlo Rally's special night stages. Nobody is saying what sort of range Frentzen got from the car. ®

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