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Future models - Tesla - Roadster

Tesla to produce a right-hook electric Roadster

Right on: Tesla's top-down Roaster may be Australia-bound.

Tesla Motors takes EV aim at right-hand drive markets, including Australia

Tesla logo7 Jul 2009

By TERRY MARTIN

TESLA Motors will expand into right-hand-drive markets with its electric Roadster, starting with a UK launch in the first quarter of 2010.

Tesla Motors chief executive Elon Musk, who last week also revealed that a condition of Daimler’s recent investment in the marque was that he remain at the helm until the Model S electric sedan reached production in 2011, said the UK and other RHD markets including Australia, Japan and India were considered significant.

He told journalists that the costs involved in re-engineering the Lotus Elise-based Roadster for right-hand drive were not prohibitive, and that the line-up would soon include a more powerful Sport version.

On June 23, Tesla received approval for $US465 million ($A590 million) in low-interest loans from the US Department of Energy to accelerate production of electric vehicles, with $US365 million ($A462 million) of that used for production engineering and assembly of the seven-seat Model S.

The remainder will be used for a powertrain manufacturing plant, which will supply all-electric powertrain solutions to other car-makers.

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