DailyTech Tesla to Begin Shipping Model S June 22

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TESLA Model S – 85 kWh Auto

Tesla Model S (Source: green.autoblog.com)

The Model S has 10,000 reservations so far, where each customer had to pay $5,000 to reserve the vehicle

Tesla Motors has announced that it will begin shipping its Model S electric sedan on June 22, 2012.

It has been three years since the Model S was initially announced, but Tesla is finally ready to start sending its all-aluminum electric sedan to the buyers. The Model S has 10,000 reservations so far, where each customer had to pay $5,000 to reserve the vehicle.

The Model S comes in three different versions, with 40 kWh, 60 kWh or 85 kWh battery packs. The lower-end 40 kWh base model will sell for $57,400 while the higher-end model will sell for $105,400. The Model S is eligible for the $7,500 federal electric tax credit as well.

Just last week, it was reported that the 85 kWh model could earn a 265-mile driving range window sticker rating from the EPA, which would put the Model S far ahead of the electric competition.

The Model S is currently being produced in a retrofitted area of a former General Motors and Toyota venture in Fremont, California. Tesla Motors received $465 million in federal loans from the U.S. Department of Energy in order to retrofit the factory and develop the Model S. So far, Tesla has used about $360 million of that loan.

The Model S couldn t have come at a better time, considering the fact that Tesla Motors has reported losses of over $500 million since 2009. Up until now, Tesla has only released its high-end $109,000 Roadster.

Despite these losses, the Model S is coming to the rescue. With news of the Model S arriving ahead of schedule earlier this month, Tesla stock jumped 10 percent. The automaker expects the Model S to help bump its annual revenue estimate to $560 million to $600 million USD, which is about $175 million per quarter.

This is about six times its current revenue.

In afternoon trading on Tuesday, Tesla shares were up more than 8 percent at $31.09. It is currently up about 14 percent since January 2012.

The next step for Tesla will be to release the Model X, which is a full-sized battery electric crossover sport utility vehicle that will start production by the end of 2013.

Tesla isn t the only successful venture that CEO Elon Musk has right now. At 3:44 a.m. EST this morning, Musk s private rocket company SpaceX became the first to launch a spacecraft to the International Space Station (ISS) in the private industry.

SpaceX sent its unmanned Dragon cargo capsule, which is expected to reach the ISS tomorrow.

Beyond this initial venture, SpaceX will make 12 more trips to the space station through a $1.6 billion contract.

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