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Auto News: Supercars, Robo-Taxis and Electricity

Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk said the second-generation Tesla Roadster supercar was designed to give a “hardcore smack-down” to traditional gasoline-powered vehicles. Musk said the $200,000-plus Roadster is the fastest production car ever made. The electric automaker claims it can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 1.9 seconds, leaving the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon’s current record of 2.3 seconds in its dust. The new Roadster is the first Tesla to mature into a second generation. Expected in 2020, Musk said it will have a 620-mile electric range and a 250-mph top speed.

Still looking to bounce back from the emissions scandal that cost the company billions, Volkswagen has kicked off a new electrification campaign with a $40 billion investment over the next five years. Most of the money will be used to develop electrified and hybrid variants of the vehicles in its lineup, the company said. The rest would be used to build self-driving car technologies. The German automaker has promised 80 electric vehicles by 2025 and hybrid or electric versions of all 300 of its vehicles by 2030.

Volvo Cars has agreed to sell Uber thousands of self-driving sport-utility vehicles that will become the ride-sharing company’s first fleet of robo-taxis. The automaker has agreed to a nonexclusive three-year deal to supply Uber with 24,000 XC90s from 2019 to 2021. The crossovers will be loaded with self-driving technologies, safety features and redundant systems that kick in if a mechanism fails.

Are you more interested in electric cars than you were five years ago? Share your thoughts on this subject in the comments section.

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