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Tesla and Toyota to Develop RAV4 Electric Vehicle

A 2012 sale date is promised for the compact sport utility.

by on Jul.16, 2010

Toyota was testing and selling an electric version of the original RAV4 from 1997-2003.

Tesla Motors, Inc. (Tesla) and Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) today announced that the two companies will start the development of an electric version of the RAV4, which will be available in the U.S. by 2012. 

The electric cute-ute will be made from the existing RAV4 with a Tesla electric powertrain substituted for the gasoline one. 

Tesla claims it will deliver prototypes to Toyota for evaluation within this year. The first prototype has already been built and is now undergoing testing. 

In May, Elon Musk of Tesla and Akio Toyoda of TMC announced their intent to cooperate on the development of electric vehicles, parts, and production system and engineering support.

Electrons and IPOs!

Upstart Tesla wants to learn from Toyota’s engineering, manufacturing, and production expertise, while automotive superpower Toyota says it will learn from Tesla’s EV technology, quick decision-making and flexibility. 

Some industry insiders think that the joint program is nothing more than an image cleaning effort by Toyota after it shut its only unionized plant in the U.S. this past spring – New United Motors Manufacturing in Fremont, California. (See UAW Taking Aim at Toyota )


Market Snaps Up Tesla Shares

Is EV maker the next Apple?

by on Jun.30, 2010

Now Wall Street has plenty riding on the Tesla Model S, too.

The first new automotive IPO in a half-century was greeted by the sort of exuberance seldom seen on Wall Street, these days, as investors charged in to grab shares of the California electric-vehicle manufacturer, Tesla Motors.

Despite a last-minute move to raise the opening price of its stock to $17, while also substantially upping the number of shares being offered, investors plugged in and were clearly turned on.  By the time the first day of trading ended, Tesla had jumped 40.5%, to $23.89.  And the upward momentum is continuing.  By midday Wednesday, shares had nudged past $28, another 20% gain.

A Good Investment...It's Free!

The initial public offering netted Tesla $226.1 million for 13.3 million shares.  The company had originally planned to put 11.1 million shares on the market – representing 12% of its equity – at a price range of $14 to $16.  (Click Here for more.) The news is particularly good for Tesla founder Elon Musk, who has invested a large chunk of his personal fortune, derived from his stake in the online financial service PayPal.  In recent weeks, Musk, who is going through a bitter divorce, let it be known that he is now broke.


Tesla Ups Price, Volume of Initial Public Offering

Demand for stock in loss-making EV firm greater than expected. Initial stock offering closes up 40% from the asking price.

by on Jun.29, 2010

Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk, shown here .with the Tesla Roadster, at the Detroit Auto Show, January 2009

Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk at the Detroit Auto Show, January 2009.


Tesla Motors, Inc. (Nasdaq:TSLA), a manufacturer of electric vehicles and electric powertrain components, today announced its initial public offering of 13.3 million shares of its common stock at a price to the public of $17 per share. 

Tesla originally said it hoped to sell 11.1 million shares of stock, equal to 12% of the company, at a price range of $14 to $16. The increase reflects anticipated demand from investors hoping to cash in on electric vehicles. 

Tesla shares began trading at $19 a share this morning on the NASDAQ Global Select Market. Of the shares in the IPO, the company is offering 11,880,600 shares and 1,419,400 shares are being offered by selling stockholders. It closed at $23.89 – up more than 40% from the $17 asking price. 

In addition, the selling stockholders have granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional aggregate of 1,995,000 shares of common stock to cover over-allotments, if any. Tesla will not receive any proceeds from the sale of shares by the selling stockholders. 

Goldman, Sachs & Co., Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan and Deutsche Bank Securities are acting as the joint book-running managers for the offering.



Tesla’s move to go public is the first IPO by a U.S. automaker in half a century, since Ford Motor in 1956. Analysts say a number of other electric vehicle manufacturers could enter the market if Tesla’s bid proves successful. EVs will be heavily subsidized by taxpayers under current legislation. And where Tesla’s stock will be trading a month from now as the hype subsides is questionable. 


Tesla IPO Set for Tuesday Launch

Will offering charge up the market?

by on Jun.28, 2010

Would you buy stock -- or a car -- from this man? Tesla CEO Elon Musk at the unveiling of the maker's Model S battery car prototype.

Investors will have the chance to plug into the nascent electric vehicle market tomorrow when Tesla Motors launches its much-anticipated Initial Public Offering.

How the company will fare with the market remains to be seen.  On the one hand, Tesla is an early entrant into a market segment most experts anticipate will grow rapidly over the coming decades.  On the other hand, the California-based maker has been losing money since it was founded and expects to continue to do so for at least several more years while it prepares its first mainstream battery car offering.

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Tesla’s move to go public is the first IPO by a U.S. automaker in half a century, though observers say a string of additional electric vehicle manufacturers could make moves into the market if Tesla’s bid proves successful.


EV Maker Tesla Edges Closer to IPO

Founder Elon Musk also confirms plans for a Roadster replacement.

by on Apr.29, 2010

Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk, shown here with the Tesla Roadster, at the Detroit Auto Show, January 2009

The California-based electric vehicle manufacturer, Tesla Motors, is edging closer to an initial public offering, according to founder Elon Musk.

Musk also confirmed that Tesla is working on a replacement for its current 2-seat sports car, the Roadster, which will go out of production by 2012.  That timetable has been dictated by the British maker, Lotus, which supplies the chassis used by Tesla for its first production model.

“We hope to go public in a couple of months,” Musk said during a visit to Detroit, another company official noting that Tesla’s planned IPO has already gone through two rounds of reviews by the Securities and Exchange Commission since the company announced its interest in selling stock, back in February.

Charge Up!

Tesla has already formed an alliance with Daimler AG, which has purchased an 8% stake in the California start-up, and which will be using Tesla’s technology to power the new electric-powered Smart cars that will reach the market in the U.S. late this year or early 2011. Tesla has other projects underway with Daimler and is also discussing possible alliances with two other automakers, Musk said.