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Tesla's Model S electric sedan on track; Crossover planned

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Tesla reported a fourth quarter loss, but said that its Model S electric sedan is on track for a mid-2012 launch. Tesla executives also said that the company may raise $100 million to $150 million to develop Model X, a crossover model.

Tesla reported a fourth quarter loss, but said that its Model S electric sedan is on track for a mid-2012 launch. Tesla executives also said that the company may raise $100 million to $150 million to develop Model X, a crossover model.

The company on Tuesday reported a net loss of $51.4 million, or 54 cents a share, on revenue of $36.3 million. The company's plan to date has been to grow its powertrain business and improve operations ahead of the launch of the Model S, an electric sedan. The company has high-profile partnerships with Toyota and Daimler to develop electric vehicles.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk isn't short on confidence. He said the Model S, which has a few alpha builds complete, "is well on its way toward becoming the vehicle of choice for 2012." The Model S will have a price of $50,000 to $80,000.

As for the Model S progress, a fleet of prototypes are being tested for cold weather braking, handling, electrical integration as well as safety validation.

Other milestones to note:

  • The Model S is nearly 100 percent sourced with 15 prototypes already built.
  • A production contract for an electric Toyota RAV4 is imminent.
  • Tesla is likely to win a production contract for Daimler's Smart Fortwo EV.
  • Telsa will have enough to produce 20,000 Model S EVs on one shift, up from the 10,000 units expected.
  • The company has reservations for 3,700 Model S vehicles to date.
  • Tesla has enough capital to build the Model S.

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Larry Dignan

Editor-in-Chief

Editor-in-Chief Larry Dignan is editor-in-chief of SmartPlanet and ZDNet. He is also editorial director of TechRepublic. Previously, he was an editor at eWeek, Baseline and CNET News. He has written for WallStreetWeek.com, Inter@ctive Week, New York Times and Financial Planning. He holds degrees from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the University of Delaware. He is based in New York but resides in Pennsylvania. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure