Tesla’s Luxury “Green” Model S: An Electric Sedan for the Future?

March 27, 2009

(ChattahBox)—Tesla Motors, an innovative Silicon Valley electric car manufacturer, revealed this week, a prototype model of its new all-electric sedan, named the Model S, during a glitzy PR event designed to generate interest and hopefully secure financing from the U.S. government. The company’s CEO, PayPal co-founder, Elon Musk and chief designer, Franz von Holzhausen, formerly with General Motors and Mazda, talked up the sleek, silver Model S. They are calling the Model S the next generation in fossil-fuel-free, zero-emission cars, and they are asking President Obama to help produce it. At a price tag of $57,400 or $49,900 minus tax credits, it’s not for the masses; it’s more like a luxury “green” vehicle.

Musk defends the high price tag by comparing it to a $35,000 Ford sedan, after fuel, savings are taken into consideration and it helps the environment as well. However, none of this will come to fruition if Tesla doesn’t secure government financing. Commercial credit is pretty much non-existent during this deep recession.

Tesla is seeking $450 million, from the Stimulus, Department of Energy grants and a loan for $250 million from a clean energy fund, created in 2005. Musk already put up $55 million of his own fortune, with additional investments from Google’s co-founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin.

If all goes according to plan, Tesla is poised to build a manufacturing plant and offer the first Model S to customers in 2011. Many buyers have already put up down payments ranging from $5,000 to $40,000, to reserve one of the first vehicles.

Tesla enjoyed previous success, albeit on a limited scale, with its $109,000 Roadster, all-electric sports car, owned by an elite group of the wealthy, with a waiting list of 1,000, still hoping to snag one of the hip, luxury sport cars. California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger owns a Tesla roadster.

Tesla’s Model S is a sort of family SUV of the future, at 196 inches long; it holds five adults and two children in rear-facing seats in the trunk, with ample storage under the hood. Although, family oriented, the Model S accelerates at a zippy, zero to 60 miles an hour in between 5.5 and 6 seconds. The interior has a cool 17-in. flat-panel screen, which serves as the main control center for the car’s lights, heating and music and will be WIFI ready.

The Model S will be able to travel on a long trip of 300 miles, before the driver has to stop to recharge the battery, which only takes 45 minutes. The Model S battery packs will be easier to remove, so in the future, with the advent of electric car repair shops, a driver can stop and quickly replace the battery.

It will be interesting to see how the all-electric Model S competes against the new “plug-in hybrid” vehicles that are soon to make their way off assembly lines, just in time for the debut of Tesla’s new vehicle.

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Comments

3 Responses to “Tesla’s Luxury “Green” Model S: An Electric Sedan for the Future?”

  1. used digger derrick trucks on March 27th, 2009 11:27 am

    It is great that people are thinking about the environment and working to make the world a safer place. Not only the materials that you are using on your home are safe for the environment but dump trucks have come a long way since the earlier models. We are learning and expanding and coming up with a wide range of safer more effective vehicles for the work force. I think it is great that many auto manufacturers are turning to hybrid vehicles to protect the environment and now they are even using hybrid dump trucks.

  2. Used Digger Derrick on October 5th, 2009 11:51 am

    Great car! I would not mind driving that around. 🙂

  3. bucket truck on October 5th, 2009 5:12 pm

    interesting post! thanks for sharing!

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