Friday, February 13, 2009

Tesla Model S

Tesla is the maker of the Roadster. The electric sports car that is wicked fast, 0 to 60 MPH in 3.9 seconds for the standard Roadster and 3.7s with the Sport model. However, at $109,000+ price tag, not too many people I know (OK none) are likely to be buying one anytime soon.

Tesla has long publicized their plan to start with a ~$100,000 car, then add a ~$60,000 car, and finally a ~$30,000 electric. With each vehicle being "no compromise" compared to gas cars in its class. The Roadster with its 125MPH top speed and over 200 miles of range delivers. And now the Model S, the ~$60,000 car, 4 door sedan is one step closer to being a reality in 2011.

$60k is still a lot to spend on a car. It opens the market up to many more people and I hope is a sign that Tesla can make it as a company and eventually deliver that ~$30,000 car that can have a mass impact on how we fuel our driving.

From Elon Musk's blog:

Unveiling the Model S and DOE funding!

On March 26th, at the Tesla design studio located within the SpaceX rocket factory, we will unveil a street-drivable prototype of the Model S four door sedan.  Our objective with the Model S was to create one of the most functional, intuitive and beautiful vehicles on the road.  Tesla Roadster customers and select VIPs invited to the event will have an opportunity to judge for themselves firsthand whether we have succeeded.  

Regarding funding, I am excited to report that the Department of Energy informed Tesla last week that they may disburse funds from our $350M Model S loan application within four to five months.  The Obama administration has thankfully made it a top priority to move quickly on the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing loan program, as this will both generate high quality jobs in the near term and lay the groundwork for a better environment in the future.  

This will keep us on track for production to start in 2011.  As a gesture of gratitude for their early support, Roadster owners will receive a $10,000 discount off the price of the Model S Signature series and automatically be first in line for the sedan.  

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