Tesla Motors 100% Electric Sedan Model S Coming Soon!
The Tesla S Model
I’ve been a pretty big proponent of electric vehicles on this site in the past, and was absolutely giddy over the specs on the 100% electric Tesla Roadster, made by Tesla Motors. Electric vehicles will be a major solution to U.S. oil dependence, global warming, and when priced to scale, they should save consumers a ton of money on fuel and upkeep.
Admittedly, electric vehicles are still a few years away from being a realistic solution in a financial sense for most consumers. To that end, I was very excited to see Tesla put out a press release on Tuesday announcing that they are moving forward in creating a new headquarters and manufacturing plant in San Jose, California. They’ll also be producing a much more affordable sedan, the Tesla S.
Here are some highlights and thoughts on the press release and what it means to the everyday consumer:
“It is our intention to service the entire market,” CEO Ze’ev Drori said in an interview with The Associated Press. “We are not a niche player.”
This is great news. I like the fact that Tesla is thinking big, which will force the behemoth auto manufacturers to move quicker. If you haven’t noticed, they have been dragging their feet for decades.
While its $60,000 price tag still clearly marks the Model S as a luxury vehicle, the five-seater will cost at least 45 percent less than the Tesla Roadster, which starts at $109,000.
$60,000 is still a steep price to pay, but it is a huge step in the right direction for the average consumer.
The San Jose factory will also produce many more cars than the Roadster’s planned run of 1,500 for the 2009 model year. The company wants to roll the first Model S off the San Jose assembly line during the fourth quarter of 2010 and expects to build 15,000 during its first year of production, Drori said.
Three years ago, who would have thought an electric vehicle would be mass produced by any automotive company, let alone one in the United States that isn’t Ford, GM, or Chrysler. Times are a changin’.
Tesla S Model Vs. Chevy Volt
GM’s Chevy Volt
The Chevy Volt has received a lot of press lately as well. It is GM’s electric vehicle and is set for release in 2010. The main difference between the Chevy Volt and Tesla’s cars is that the Volt has an internal combustion engine that kicks in if the battery needs to be recharged while on the road.
Whereas Tesla’s vehicles are said to get 220 miles on a single charge, the Chevy Volt only gets 40 before the engine kicks on. A price tag has not been placed on the Volt yet, but analytics are predicting it will be $40,000. Is Tesla’s battery technology ‘that good’ (180 more miles per charge), or is the Volt going to be much cheaper by intentionally limiting the size of its battery in comparison to the one Tesla is using.
Even though these are slightly different cars it is great to see that there will be some competition in the marketplace with U.S. made electric vehicles. If history repeats itself, the foreign automakers won’t be far behind.
Tesla S Discussion:
- How much extra would you pay for your vehicle if it had an electric engine versus a gas?
- Would you be in the market for a Tesla vehicle or a Volt?
- Is the moral motivation to buy an electric vehicle incentive enough to outweigh the obvious cost limitations?