Better Place, Tesla and Zero Motorcycles receive California Energy Commission grants
The California Energy Commission announced on Wednesday grants supporting projects at Tesla Motors, Zero Motorcycles, and several other organizations meant to move California closer to a clean transportation system. The projects will either support electric vehicle manufacturing, or deployment of clean energy vehicles in California.
Tesla Motors is being awarded $10 million, with Tesla kicking in another $50 million of matching funds, to support manufacturing of the Tesla Model X. That vehicle is Tesla's all electric SUV, built on the same platform as the Tesla Model S, that is slated to go into production in 2013. The CEC grant will go towards purchasing equipment required for Model X manufacturing, and the project is expected to create more than 500 new manufacturing jobs in California. These jobs of course will be at Tesla's plant in Fremont, CA.
The Bay Area Air Quality Management District will receive $3 million to support the long-delayed eTaxi program in the San Francisco Bay Area. That program is meant to be a demonstration of Better Place's fast battery swapping system as used in a taxicab. Two battery switching stations will be installed at San Francisco International Airport, and at San Jose International Airport. The program had been awarded other funds in the past, but no money has yet been spent. The project is expected to launch in 2013.