With a USD 465-million loan finalized, Tesla is setting up manufacturing lines for the world's first mass-produced electric vehicle, the Model S. An article in Ecoseed notes that this loan from the United States Department of Energy is one of a series intended to stimulate growth of this sector of the transportation industry.
The loan is the second agreed by the Energy Department with an advanced technology vehicle manufacturer. The department signed its first loan agreement for $5.9 billion to Ford Motor Company in September last year.
The department has also signed conditional commitments with Nissan North America Inc. and Fisker Automotive. Nissan plans to build electric cars and battery packs at the company’s Smyrna, Tennessee manufacturing complex, while Fisker recently announced that it will re-open a General Motors plant in Wilmington, Delaware to build plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.
The price tag for the Model S is daunting ($49,900), but the technology offers promises to change the nature of the auto industry.