Monday, December 3, 2007

Tesla Roadster Production Schedule

Tesla Motors Announces 2008 Roadster Production Schedule and Achievement of Critical Milestones on Crash Tests and Range Testing

Official testing achieves 245 miles range on EPA combined cycle


  • Michael Marks, CEO of Tesla Motors, has established a production goal of 50 cars in the first quarter of 2008, followed by an additional 600 cars for the remainder of the year.
  • Tesla has been engaging in intensive durability and validation testing of final prototype cars (known as “validation prototypes.”)
  • This production schedule provides the opportunity to ensure that the all aspects of the production cars meet the level of quality and reliability that is expected when shipped to customers.
  • As part of this final testing, a Tesla Roadster ran for 245 miles on the combined EPA cycle on a single charge (235 on the EPA highway cycle, 255 on the EPA city cycle.)
  • Separately, a validation prototype Tesla Roadster successfully passed static and dynamic side-intrusion crash tests, the only tests that were not passed in the earlier prototype phase.
  • In other performance testing, a validation prototype Tesla Roadster accelerated consistently from 0 to 60 mph in under 4 seconds.
  • Tesla Motors has initiated a unique program, inviting customers to participate in durability and validation testing by road-testing our validation prototypes and providing feedback to marketing and engineering teams. Customers have shared their feedback on the Tesla Motors blog and with other customers in a members-only online forum.
  • Tesla will stop taking reservations for 2008 Roadsters in the near future and initiate a traditional waiting list. Customers who sign up for the waiting list will pay $5,000 for their place in line for additional 2008 Roadsters if and when an increase in production is announced. Alternatively, customers on the waiting list will be first in line for the 2009 model year Roadster (pricing and specifications for 2009 Roadsters is not yet announced.)


  • The announcement of this production schedule represents a change from the previously stated goal of fall 2007. In the last letter to customers in August, former CEO Martin Eberhard indicated that the production schedule was subject to successful completion of crash testing and durability testing. This new schedule represents the decision to continue with additional durability and validation testing prior to start of production and shipping of cars to customers.
  • In an announcement earlier this year, Tesla notified customers that the EPA range of the car was not likely to reach the original goal of 250, and instead would be closer to 200 miles based on progress at that time. Since then, Tesla engineers have worked diligently to improve on this critical performance metric, and the results of the effort over the last months have been extraordinary.
  • The EPA cycle test result was observed by CARB (California Air Resources Board) staff and is expected to be formally certified by EPA in the near future, as is standard procedure.
  • The range of the Tesla Roadster is by far the highest range ever achieved by a production EV. The next closest was the 1999 EV1 using nickel metal-hydride batteries, which achieved a 140 mile range rating. No other EV currently being developed has completed an official test for range using the EPA standard protocols.
  • Acceleration testing was performed by Tesla staff using GPS instrumentation with traction control on. Additional testing is planned with third parties in the near future.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Tesla Motors Completes CEO Search

A Message from Elon Musk, Chairman of Tesla Motors:

For the past several months, the board of Tesla Motors has been engaged in a search for the right person to lead the company through its next phase of growth. During the search, we met with many candidates from a wide range of backgrounds, including both the automotive and high-tech sectors.

Given what Tesla needs to accomplish, the ideal CEO is someone that understands the automotive sector, but also has a proven entrepreneurial and high-tech track record. Advancing our leading electric drivetrain technology is critical, but, above all, the Tesla CEO must be someone who will ensure that the products we deliver to customers are outstanding.

To that end, it is with great pleasure that I announce that Ze’ev Drori will become CEO of Tesla Motors, effective December 3rd.

Ze'ev is a successful high-tech entrepreneur and an experienced chief executive with the proven ability to create and manage companies with innovative products in both the high-tech and automotive sectors. He has more than 30 years of continual success and has demonstrated the ability to lead a company from conception to profitability, a public offering and thousands of employees.

The first company he founded was Monolithic Memories, a Silicon Valley semiconductor firm that pioneered fundamental advances in memory and logic technology, before being acquired by AMD in 1987. Under his leadership, Monolithic introduced programmable read-only memory (PROM) and programmable array logic (PAL), which revolutionized many aspects of computer and electronic systems technology. As CEO through 1981, Ze’ev was responsible for R&D, manufacturing, marketing, finance, world wide sales and overseas operations for product assembly. Ze’ev served as chairman of the board from 1981 through 1987.

After the sale of Monolithic Memories, Ze’ev purchased a controlling interest in Clifford Electronics, then a small start-up in auto security systems and the perfect combination of his twin passions for technology and automobiles. As chairman and CEO, he rapidly developed Clifford into the world’s leading automobile security company through significant innovations, such as remote control alarms, and distribution relationships with domestic and international car manufacturers as well as a network of thousands of retail dealers. In 1999, Ze’ev sold Clifford Electronics to Allstate Insurance.

I would like to thank Michael Marks for his leadership of Tesla Motors as interim CEO for the last few months. Michael’s experience with manufacturing and logistics has been very valuable for the company as it prepares to enter production of the Tesla Roadster. As an investor and customer, Michael will continue to be involved in Tesla.

- Elon Musk

Tesla Roadster

About Tesla Motors

Tesla Motors was founded in July 2003 by Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning to create efficient electric cars for people who love to drive. The Chairman of Tesla Motors, a privately held company, is Elon Musk, who has led or co-led all three rounds of investment resulting in $60 million in funding. Musk has been instrumental in both corporate and product development at Tesla Motors.

Tesla Motors currently employs more than 80 people, including teams in California, the U.K. and Taiwan. The company has recruited employees whose background and experience mirror the vehicle itself, drawing from diverse expertise in the electronics, automotive and software industries.

Tesla Motors creates vehicles that conform to all U.S. safety, environmental and durability standards. The cars include modern safety equipment such as airbags, front crumple zones, side impact protection and 2½ mph bumpers. Tesla Motors will only sell cars in the U.S. once they pass the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS).

For more information, visit

Tesla Motors Receives 'Environmental Leadership' Award from Global Green USA

Global Green President Mikhail Gorbachev Recognizes Tesla Motors for Innovative Use of Sustainable Product Design

NEW YORK (October 17, 2006) – Tesla Motors, manufacturers of performance electric cars, was named a recipient of the Global Green USA Product/Industrial Design Award for its work in developing the Tesla Roadster, the world’s first all-electric, Lithium-ion battery powered sports car. Monday evening, Tesla and three other leading innovators were honored at the 7th annual Designing a Sustainable and Secure World Awards, an event co-sponsored by Global Green USA and Green Cross International.

Each year, Global Green recognizes advancements made in industry, building, media and public policy that move the world toward a sustainable and secure future.

"There couldn't be a more important time for these innovators,” said Mikhail Gorbachev, President of Green Cross International, Global Green USA’s parent organization, through an interpreter. “Designing a more sustainable and secure world will make us all safer and healthier."

Tesla Motors, based in San Carlos, Calif., is in the process of bringing the all-electric Tesla Roadster sports car to market. It is capable of going from zero to 60 mph in around four seconds, has a top speed of better than 130 mph, and can travel up to 250 miles on a single charge. The car’s power comes from its Lithium-ion Energy Storage System, or battery pack, which can be recharged in about 3.5 hours. First deliveries are expected to begin next summer.

“Sustainability and resource depletion are among our deepest concerns,” said Martin Eberhard, CEO and co-founder of Tesla Motors. “We set out to design a car that combines style, acceleration and handling with advanced technologies in order to make the Tesla Roadster a viable alternative to fossil-fuel cars.”

Other Winners include Goldman, Sachs & Co., for design and implementation of corporate policies that preserve and protect the environment; Sundance Channel for the development of Sundance Channel GREEN, a weekly primetime programming block focusing on environmental topics; and Bank of America, for creating one of the country’s greenest high-rise buildings.