The new Tesla Model S is on course to reach European showrooms in late 2012, and the firm claims to have already received 4600 deposits for the electric luxury saloon.
The Model S, scooped here for the first time while testing, is crucial to Tesla’s future success. The electric vehicle pioneer has never recorded a profit in its eight-year history, and last week reported second-quarter losses of $58.9 million (£36.1m) following heavy investment in R&D of the new seven-seat saloon.
Total revenue for the quarter stood at a record $58.2m (£35.7m), however, bolstered by a rise in demand for the Roadster.
Tesla, which has financial backing from firms such as Toyota, Panasonic and Daimler’s private equity arm, Blackstar, plans to sell 20,000 Model S units per year from 2013. The Californian firm’s CEO, Elon Musk, said the initial 4600 deposits were enough to account for almost all of the S’s first year of production, which gets under way in mid-2012. Around half of all Model S demand has come from California.