Tesla Motors, the Silicon Valley maker of the all-electric roadster due out this year, said the vehicle won’t be able to travel as far as previously thought without a recharge.
The Tesla will now have a range “greater than 200 miles,” less than the 250 originally promised — because of design changes made to fulfill safety regulations and for other reasons. From a new transmission to new stereo subwoofer, the alterations have added “several hundred pounds” to the car’s weight, the company said in a letter to people who had put down a deposit for the car. Instead of a curb weight of 2,500 pounds, it is now over 2,600 pounds.
No change, yet, on the promise it will go 0 to 60 mph in less than 4 seconds. No one has yet asked for their deposit back, the company tells the Mercury News’s Matt Nauman (see full story).
The Tesla is backed by a number of high-profile investors, including Google co-founders and PayPal co-founder Elon Musk, and has been touted by folks like Arnold Schwarzenegger, who has been pushing an eco-friendly agenda more aggressively lately. It is part of a wave of investments in new clean technology companies. Investments in such clean-tech North American and European companies totaled $903 million during the first quarter, a strong 16.5 percent increase over the $775 million invested in the previous quarter, and a 42 percent increase over the same quarter a year ago, according to the Cleantech Venture Network yesterday.