Tesla motors has announced that it is ahead of schedule to deliver the first examples of its Model S electric sedan by June.
Noting that the car has, “nearly completed all [the] regulatory approvals and certifications required,” Tesla plans to begin initial deliveries in June. This is only one month ahead of schedule, but Tesla is optimistic that all of the crash testing required under the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act will be completed shortly.
Tesla is releasing more details on the Model S all the time and though the first customers will get to drive their cars before the motoring press does, the company has set high standards for its performance and efficiency. Tesla say the Model S will be capable of travelling up to 560 km under extra-urban/highway driving conditions at 80 km/h and about 400 km at 110 km/h. Those with enough patience could potentially achieve over 730 km on a single charge by driving at 40 km/h. Of course, acceleration from a stop will reduce this figure, but it shows the 85 kWh battery pack in the Tesla is capable of tripling the range of the much smaller Nissan Leaf under similar conditions.
Tesla expect 90 percent of their 2012 revenue to come from sales of the Model S, of which it plans to deliver 5 000 units by the end of 2012 – while their order books stand at more than 10 000. The first 1 000 units of the Model S will be the special Signature Series cars, with the 85 kWh battery pack and some unique styling enhancements. Following these, regular production of the 85 kWh-powered cars will begin, followed later on by two smaller (60 kWh and 40 kWh) battery pack models.