Friday, March 27, 2009

Tesla Rolls Out 'WhiteStar' aka Model S aka My New Crush

That's right, I said 'my new crush'. For this car, I've turned into a 12 year old girl. Their business model at Tesla Motors was basically to start by making a high end all electric sports car, the Roadster. The profits from that would help finance the development of a 'mid-range' car priced around $50k. The profit from that would fund a $30k model. And so they would have a small fleet of electric plug-ins for a fairly wide range of customers.

The second car, code-named WhiteStar, was finally unveiled yesterday as Tesla's Model S. I have to say it's quite attractive and now is in a price range that many more people can afford. That's not to say everyone can afford it, it's just far more affordable than the Roadster.

Some Specs from Tesla:

BASE PRICE $49,900 (that includes a $7500 tax credit)

• Seating for 7 people
• Unique hatch for oversized items
• 60/40 flat-folding rear seat
• 2nd trunk under hood

• 0-60 mph in 5.6 seconds
• PURE electric
• 2X as efficient as hybrids
• Proven powertrain from leading EV manufacturer
• 17 inch infotainment touchscreen

• Up to 300 mile range
• 45 minute QuickCharge
• Charges from 120V, 240V or 480V
• 5 minute battery swap

Okay, now that I've listed the specs, I'm kind of over the initial pure sex appeal, but still smitten. I'm definitely interested to see how well this car does. Frankly, everyone (including John McCain) is shitting their pants over the Chevy Volt and the WhiteStar seems a far nicer (and moderately more expensive) electric plug-in with a big brother who has done the hard work of proving the technology. We'll see if the two vehicles end up competitive.

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