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A now profitable Tesla motors hopes that a $49,900 Model S sedan will send its profit soaring to even greater heights.

The company is also launching the Roadster Sport model in 2011.  (Source: Tesla Motors)
After years of losses, the company's persistence is finally paying off

Luxury electric car maker Tesla Motors appears to be firing on all cylinders.  Despite a painful couple of years that saw the company cutting back to survive the recession, the company emerged stronger than ever.  Thanks to a new partnership with Daimler, additional engineering, distribution, and marketing resources were gained.  And most importantly, Tesla finally began to deliver vehicles.

Now the company can celebrate an important milestone -- its first profit.  After many months in the red, July saw the company in the black, making $1M USD in profit on $20M USD in revenue.  The profits came thanks to a record 109 cars shipped in the month.  Manufacturing cost cuts also helped to enable the profit.

Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk comments, "There is strong demand for a car that is unique in offering high performance with a clean conscience.  Customers know that in buying the Roadster they are helping fund development of our mass market electric cars."

Tesla, like many R&D driven greentech firms, offered a target date for profitability.  However, it appears that Tesla is one of the few to actually deliver on such a date -- having projected a profit in "mid-2009".

The Tesla Roadster undeniably features the most attractive production electric vehicle body design to date.  They also offer fittingly sporty performance and a utilitarian 244-mile range.  In other words, while expensive, the Roadsters do deliver a strong experience.  Currently, the Roadsters retail for a base price of $109,000.

Tesla has borrowed $465M USD from the U.S. Department of Energy, to produce a luxury sedan reachable by more customers at a price point of $49,900.  This new model will be called the Model S.

The company is also working with Daimler to create electric versions of the popular Smart car.  Late this year, the company will deploy a fleet of the 1,000 of the electrified ultra-compact vehicles.  Tesla is also set to deploy a higher-performance version of the Roadster -- the Roadster Sport -- in 2011.

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RE: Affordable?
By Keeir on 8/10/2009 3:50:26 PM , Rating: 3
I don't think any significant improvements were made in battery technology since the last 10 years.

How wrong you are...

Consider the EV1 versus the Tesla Model S. Both cars are similar in price. The EV1 was significantly more expensive, but never really produced for sale. The price that the lease was based on works out to be roughly 50,000 in 2010 dollars. So they are very close.

The Telsa Model S seats 5+, EV1 2
Model S has more than twice the range of the EV1
Model S has less than 1/2 the 0-60 time of the EV1
Model S meets greater safety standards then the EV1
Model S interior and features well... thats not even fair
Model S looks great, the EV1 looks... like a strange electric car.

Or maybe you just meant the battery technology and not how its used in Cars?

Lead-Acid-->NiHM-->LiFePO4 have occured within 15 years for EV applications.

Any way you slice it, significant advancement has been made in Battery Technology in the last 10-15 years. This doesn't change your underlying point that Batterys still make a poor Energy Storage Solution. But Internal Combustion Engines also make very poor energy convertors. The "tipping" so to speak is fast approaching when the efficiency gains of electric drive outwieght the poor energy storage of the battery.

"It looks like the iPhone 4 might be their Vista, and I'm okay with that." -- Microsoft COO Kevin Turner

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