Tesla Death Watch 17: Fifteen Cars?

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

Greentech Media reports that Tesla's "accelerating production" of their lithium-ion powered sports car. They're heading for their promised 100 cars per month. You know; once they get their transmission shit together. in October. Or thereabouts. Or later. Meanwhile, according to a Tesla newsletter released Wednesday night, the Lotus assembly plant in Hethel, England has fifteen cars "ready to be shipped" to CA sans battery and powertrain. I'll admit it: fifteen cars is fourteen more than I've built (don't ask). But have you seen Tesla's showroom? These Silicon Valley boys are not exactly Scrooge McDuck when it comes to overheads. Even if you figure each customer car at the new price of $120k, that's only $1.8m gross income. What's the bet that each of those cars will end up costing Tesla money (a la David Brown's Aston Martin era)? Never mind. Saving the planet is a tough job, but someone's got to do it.

Robert Farago
Robert Farago

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  • Carlisimo Carlisimo on Aug 21, 2008

    I saw one today! Here in San Francisco, where all the offices are. It was a boring dark green color, the taillights were ugly, the mesh grilles reveals too many inelegant mechanical bits inside, and the gas filler cap is awkwardly located (why’d they have to make it look like a normal one?). Looks good besides those little details, but TTAC had convinced me that they don’t exist in the wild and clearly they do.

  • Durishin Durishin on Aug 21, 2008

    I thought Nancy Pelosi was saving the planet this month.

  • Healthy skeptic Healthy skeptic on Aug 22, 2008

    @carlisimo Shouldn't you call it something besides the "gas filler cap"? Wish I'd seen it. I work in SF's Financial District.

  • Guyincognito Guyincognito on Aug 22, 2008

    @ Frantz: I haven't been keeping a tally but I know the initial round of funding was something on the order of $100M, last year they raised another $140M, and Elon Musk has kicked in a bunch of his money so they must have burned around $300M by now.