CEO Elon Musk promises to rival Nissan Leaf with new model

Tesla will launch a new entry-level model within four years, CEO Elon Musk has said.

Musk hinted that the new car will be a rival to the Nissan Leaf. It will have a range of around 200 miles and will cost less than £26,500.

The new model is top priority for Tesla, with Musk saying he won’t consider selling Tesla or leaving the company until the car is built.

Musk added that he believes Tesla’s Model S is compelling but too expensive for the company to achieve mainstream growth.

In an interview with the Bloomberg news agency, Musk said : “With the Model S, you have a compelling car that’s too expensive for most people. And you have the Leaf, which is cheap, but it’s not great. What the world really needs is a great, affordable electric car. I’m not going to let anything go, no matter what people offer, until I complete that mission.”

Speaking about a possible sale of Tesla, Musk added that any potential buyer would most likely be someone from outside the motor industry.

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Comments
12

28 May 2013

£26,500 is hardly entry level even if it is roughly the same price as the Nissan Leaf.

28 May 2013

owenmahamilton wrote:

£26,500 is hardly entry level even if it is roughly the same price as the Nissan Leaf.

If Tesla go down this route then they should learn the lesson that Nissan did with their Leaf, by giving buyers the option of leasing their batteries, thereby lowering the purchase price closer to that of 'conventional' hatchbacks. After that, the Leaf's figures looked a lot more managable - £15,990 (including the £5000 Govt. grant ) for the car and £70pm for 36months @ 7.5k miles per annum for the batteries. No anxiety about future battery replacement costs and when more advanced batteries become available just upgrade them at the end of the contract. If electric cars are going to catch on with 'mainstream' motorists you have to feel that it will only be possible with schemes like this. After that, we'll just need more charging points across the country and the future will look a lot brighter for pure EVs (no pun intended!).

28 May 2013

owenmahamilton wrote:

£26,500 is hardly entry level even if it is roughly the same price as the Nissan Leaf.

Look at the price of a small hatch these days. A basic Golf is nearly 17 grand, and to get anything decent, it is over 20k. So 26k for a pure electric car with 200 mile range is pretty good going. It would be even better if it was 300 or more miles per charge. At that, it would almost become via to me to have as a company car

28 May 2013

I can understand a car like the Leaf costing more than a conventiional car due to the new and complex technology involved but there is no way in the world a basic Golf should cost more than about £10,000.

MrJ

28 May 2013

If Tesla gives its new baby the visual flair of the shapely Model S, and even more range, it'll wipe the blobular Leaf off the roads.

 

28 May 2013

The Saudis will probably buy Tesla and shut it down - a future where cars run on electricity is not one they'd like to think about!

28 May 2013

paddyb wrote:

The Saudis will probably buy Tesla and shut it down - a future where cars run on electricity is not one they'd like to think about!

There's quite a few posters on this website who'd like to see the back of electric/hybrid's too, athough they disappearing fast!

 

Hydrogen cars just went POP

28 May 2013

In less than 4 years time Nissan will have made the Leaf, or rather  its successor great, leaving nowhere for the Tesla to dominate.

But competition is good.

 

29 May 2013

If all the worlds vehicles ran on electricity, you would need all the worlds oil to burn to generate the electricty required.  Its impossible for oil to become of less value as long as it exists.

Until nuclear fusion of course.

 

 

29 May 2013

I must admit, i really like what Tesla is doing. The Model S and Model X really make a very strong case for EVs. However, despite great design, excellent tech and good battery life, the EV still isn't quite ready for prime time among mainstream buyers. For Tesla to make the jump, it'll need an entry level Golf-size car that sells for less than $30,000 / £20,000. This new model could just be that car. For it to succeed, battery technology will need to advance to offer a number of important new benefits:

  • Minimum 500 mile range
  • Batteries that are smaller, lighter and cheaper
  • Batteries that can easily be changed by the owner / driver
  • Nationwide rapid- charging infrastructure

Imagine driving from London to Edinburgh with an existing Tesla Model S. You'd get as far as Leeds (230 miles/ 300 km) and then you'd be forced to wait 8 hours while the car fully recharged. And what if you couldn't find a charging station? You'd be stranded, unless you could plug it into an ordinary electrical socket.

At the moment, EV batteries are simply enormous and need to be changed by the manufacturer. They're also incredibly expensive and heavy. They're not that durable either. By the time you've recharged your car 1,000 times (after around 3-years of constant use) you'll need to replace the battery unit, which is likley to cost around 30-40% of the price of the car when new. 

I don't want to be too critical of what Tesla is doing, but the disadvantages I've listed are fairly major. What is excisting, though, is that with every new generation model, Tesla is increasing battery life and range, reducing battery size and charge times, while improving the infrastructure. 

Make no mistake, we're reaching a 'tipping point' with electric cars. That will come with a battery breakthrough. Today, existing car manufacturers and oil companies are resisting the changeover to electric car propulsion systems, because their existing business model is a cash cow. But if Tesla suddenly gives us a Golf competitor with 500 mile range and a user-changeable battery the size of a suitcase - the rush to buy it will eclipse anything we've seen people queuing to buy iPhones. In fact Tesla could do to Ford, VW and Toyota what Apple has done to Microsoft. Let's hope so. Smile 

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