Tesla opens its factory doors to prospective Model S customers
Tesla, the California-based manufacturer of the exotic Lotus-based Roadster, opened its doors yesterday evening to customers who have preordered Tesla's upcoming Model S sedan. They were given the opportunity to tour the factory in Fremont and a ride in a prototype of the Model S. The CEO of Tesla and co-founder of PayPal, Elon Musk, asked the customers for support and to spread the news about it.
The Tesla Model S will be the largest determining factor in the success of Tesla as a company, as it is expected to cost around $60,000 before federal tax credits and incentives. That, along with its four-door practicality, is supposed to broaden Tesla's reach out of the niche sports car market of selling the $110,000 two-seat Roadster. However, with the new Tesla Model S Sport that the company is talking about, the sedan's performance won't be far off from the Roadster's, with a projected 0-60 time of 4.5 seconds. The Model S will come with three battery and range options, from 160 miles, 230 miles, or 300 miles on a single charge.
Tesla, a company with 1,400 workers that can boast that it is a successful publicly-traded company since June of 2010, has several big-name investors including Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page as well as $465 million loan guarantee from the US Department of Energy in 2009. It has plans to unveil a Model X sport-utility vehicle prototype in December with plans for it to go into production by 2013.