Tesla Motors, makers of the remarkable electric super car that can accelerate as fast as a Ferarri, putting the Prius to shame, has just announced plans to begin production of a $60,000 electric sedan that would seat five and go 225 miles between charges. The Model S would effectively put the price of an all-electric car that doesn't sacrifice performance within reach of a much larger segment of the population.
This is a big development for our energy-strapped nation. It was unknown whether electric battery technology was advanced enough to be cost-effective for people without deep pockets. A $60K price point in just two years would be a game changer, and in 10 years electric cars could be ubiquitous. Tesla’s co-founder and chairman, Elon Musk, is on the record with a prediction of a sub-$30K offering in four years at the most according to Palo Alto Daily News. Unless Tesla is bluffing, they may have discovered something special in battery technology, which may just save suburbia from an inevitable death.
However, Tesla has disappointed before with production delays and an inability to deliver enough supply to the hundreds of customers yearning for their environmentally-friendly race car, so there are plenty who doubt that Tesla can deliver on their goal to bring electric cars to the masses.
If you are interested in investing in the future of the auto industry, you may have soon have such an opportunity. Musk has told C-Net that there are plans in the works for a Tesla IPO by the end of 2008, which would raise an estimated $100 million. But perhaps an even better investment option is to head over to the Tesla Motors site where you can pay $55,000 to lock in a production slot for the 2009 Tesla Roadster. As your delivery date approaches, you could sell your spot in line for a nice profit, which you can then put toward a more practical Model S in 2010.