In a discussion on Twitter, Musk talks about the acceleration of the second generation Tesla Roadster, which can achieve a zero to 60 time of under two seconds. He then expresses that they could reduce that time further if they installed rockets onto the vehicle, possibly even allowing momentary flight.
“Not saying the next gen Roadster special upgrade package *will* definitely enable it to fly short hops, but maybe …
Certainly possible. Just a question of safety. Rocket tech applied to a car opens up revolutionary possibilities.”
The rocket wouldn’t be a traditional format. Instead of burning fuel, the system would replace the rear seats for a tank of (extremely) compressed air. When activated, the air would be expelled out of 10 thrusters positioned around the vehicle. The proposed format would add over an entire G of force to the vehicle, since rockets do not rely on tire grip for acceleration. When combined with the wheel-based acceleration, they estimate a new 0-60 time of only 1.1 second.
In all fairness, Musk later explains that there’s little to no way this would be legally allowed on public roads. But considering he’s the head of SpaceX as well, we can hardly blame him for considering it.