Electric car maker pitches for share of $25bn green car fund
11 December 2008

Tesla Motors will not be able to bring the Model S electric saloon to the market unless it gets government funding, CEO Elon Musk has admitted.

"We can't move forward with that without a major amount of capital," Musk told the Detroit Free Press.

"If we don't get any government funding, then what we need to do is wait until the capital markets recover, which could be a year or two years from now."

Tesla is trying to secure $400 million of federal funding from the bailout money reserved to help Detroit’s Big Three develop more fuel-efficient models.

The fledgling electric car-maker had previously insisted that it had very secure finances, despite laying off tens of workers in recent months.

With the aid, Elon Musk – who made his millions from PayPal – claimed Tesla could be selling 20,000 examples of the Model S per annum by 2011.

Join the debate


11 December 2008

It appears they have enough funding for the current car, but the money wanted is for the development of the saloon car. I believe they have secured $40 million which is enough to cover the sports car in production.

11 December 2008

Ridiculous. Ridiculous name - Musk, ridiculous price - $120,000 and upwards and ridiculous request for bailout for what is a boutique, froth, inconsequential business - $400m. Why not just get Arnie's busted Californian state taxes or the Federal Govt. to pay people to drive the damn things. Would work out cheaper in the end, cutting out Musk's take.

What Musk is really saying is that absent $150/barrel/$4/gallon gas the whole thing looks ridiculous even for the once gliterati to lob their cash into. Unfortunately Musk will get his wish, both some form of 'green car' nonsense taxpayer funding and, courtesy of Obama's rolling quadrillion dollar bailouts, the price of crude and gas, in US dollar terms rocketing back up to $200/barrel, thanks to money printing and hyperinflation; will be here by June next year, my guess. Hang in there Musky.

11 December 2008

Personally, I think Tesla deserve the money more than GM or Chrysler, mainly because Tesla are certain to use the money for genuinely good, interesting electric cars. Money was originally set aside for growing electric manufacturers, not GM or Chrysler. They've got themselves into quite a mess.

"The creative adult is the child who survived."

11 December 2008

I think they want the money for the new car as opposed to the current one? As far as I know, they secured $40m for current operations. Found this on Wiki:

"Tesla's third round included investment from prominent entrepreneurs including Google co-founders Sergey Brin & Larry Page, former eBay President Jeff Skoll, Hyatt heir Nick Pritzker and added the VC firms Draper, Fisher, Jurvetson, Capricorn Management and The Bay Area Equity Fund Managed by JP Morgan.[1]"

With those investors they should be putting in the money; they made the investment in the first place (or third place!); I guess it would be different if they were all skint....but they are not!! (maybe JP Morgan!); they pulled that designer across from Mazda and so they had intent......I have faith in the US congress they will sort them, but personally I think the investors should cough up........at least some i.e. like about $200m!....

11 December 2008

Is this Elon Musk not another John DeLorean?

Leave this type of car for the big guns to manufacture. Or perhaps the US taxpayer's own car manufacturer GM Chrysler could build it.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Skoda-Karoq 2.0 TDI 4x4
    First Drive
    16 October 2017
    Diesel version of Skoda’s junior SUV is unobtrusive and undemanding, but we’d still go for the silkier petrol version of the Karoq
  • Audi Q7 e-tron
    First Drive
    16 October 2017
    Expensive and flawed but this understated diesel-electric Audi Q7 has a lot to offer
  • Citroën C3
    First Drive
    16 October 2017
    Is the third gen Citroën C3 ‘fresh and different’ enough to take on its supermini rivals? We spend six months with one to find out
  • BMW X3
    First Drive
    15 October 2017
    A satisfying rework of the X3 that usefully improves its handling, cabin finish, space and connectivity to make this BMW a class front-runner again
  • Vauxhall Insignia Country Tourer
    First Drive
    13 October 2017
    Off-road estate is now bigger, more spacious and available with torque-vectoring all-wheel drive, but is it enough to make its German rivals anxious?