Agitated by all the back-and-forth about when Tesla will discontinue its signature Roadster EV? Elon Musk wants to quell your fears. The Tesla Motors CEO announced during a speech on Tuesday that the auto startup has a number of new cars up its sleeve beyond the upcoming Model S sedan.
Autoweek reports from the scene:
The Model S is due in 2012, and Musk says the company is narrowly focused on getting that sedan to the market on time. The car will start for less than half the price of the Roadster and is expected to sticker for about $50,000, including a federal tax credit. About the same time the four-door arrives, the first generation of the Roadster will cease production after the 2012. A year or two later, a successor will launch, Musk said. More Tesla products are expected to follow, including a crossover. Look for new arrivals of vehicles in 2013 and 2014, "which is a rapid pace," Musk said
A rapid pace, indeed, especially considering that Tesla hasn't even figured out where it's producing the 2012 Model S. And he's launching a first-generation Roadster successor "a year or two later" after ceasing production. Sounds sketchy at best. For a startup that currently only has one vehicle model on the streets, it might be overly ambitious to bet on at least three more models over the next four years. Even if that doesn't all work out, Tesla says it has a backup plan: providing batteries, chargers, and electric drive train technology to other suppliers, including Smart and Mercedes. Plans are great. Funding, revenues, and an actual line of cars is far more impressive.