Tuesday, May 31, 2011

How much would you pay for 300mi EV range?

Tesla Motors announces price proposal for Model S Sedan

In a recent blog entry, Tesla finally gave us a glimpse into the probable pricing of their first foray into the family sedan: the Tesla Model S.

The price of the US base Model S with a 160-mile battery is $49,900 after the $7,500 federal tax credit. The 230-mile range option is expected to price at about $10,000 more and the 300-mile option at about $20,000 more than the base.

What this means is for their base model, a 160-mile / 257-km range vehicle, they sticker price will be $57,400.  The $7,500 comes from the tax credit for plug-in electric vehicles, which the Obama administration is trying to make a rebate.  If this change is made, you may get that $7,500 back as soon as you buy the Model S, right at the dealership.  Without it, you could wait up to 16 months to you file your taxes and get your refund for the year you bought the car.  Clearly, an up to 16 month wait is not an easy pill to swallow when you're forking down $57,400 + options for a Model S.

But when you do the math, $57,400 is just the tip of the iceberg.  Clearly from this information, we finally have a window into 300 mi range barrier.

The 300 mi / 483 km Range Tesla Model S will retail for about $77,400
Clearly, we can see the from this information that the 230-mile / 370-km range Model S will start at about $67,400.  Since the Tesla Roadster's range is about the same (221 miles / 356 km by the latest EPA measures), $67,400 looks pretty sweet when compared to the Roadster's $109,000 price tag.  But the range-smashing Signature and highest-end Model S is where the car really starts to compete with the old internal combustion engine vehicles!  When you do the math, the 300 mi / 483 km Range Tesla Model S will retail for about $77,400.  While not at all a trivial purchase — you could buy a quality, small, used airplane for that money — you'll definitely be able to make that weekend trip to the countryside with that kind of range.

Finally, I want to apologize to my readers.  I've been AWOL for the last couple months while I gather heaps and heaps of new information, as well as try to get around to writing a number of stories I've been meaning to tell.  I'm hoping in that light to try and bring you a story every day or two to try and catch up on all my material.  So stay tuned…