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by Brett Davis

Remember how Tesla made automotive history by achieving the second highest price gain this year after its initial share offering last week? Share prices jumped from $17.55 up to $23.89. They have since taken a dive and on Friday, closed at $19.20.

The initial price offering was the first by an American car company since Ford Motor Co. in 1956. CEO Elon Musk, offered the shares to help the company fund the new battery-powered sedan project – the Model S.

The US government is offering support for the development of electric cars though. President Barack Obama has said he hopes to have one million plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles on the roads by 2015. He has also helped provide Tesla a $465 million loan from the Department of Energy to develop its cars.

Tesla will also use the loan to help fund the Model S sedan project which is supposedly going to have a price tag of US$57,400 (AUD$67,890). The sedan is expected to achieve a range of 257km per charge and be on the market by 2012. The company also plans to sell 20,000 of the models each year.

It’s great to see the beginnings of some competition in the hybrid/electric car sector, with the Fisker Karma launch just around the corner and the Mercedes-Benz E-Cell development project car. We only hope the Australian market gets to see some of this technology trickle down into locally-made cars, sooner rather than later too.




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