2012 Tesla Model S: 50 Cars Built, 29 Delivered, Maker Says

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2012 Tesla Model S, brief test drive, New York City, July 2012

2012 Tesla Model S, brief test drive, New York City, July 2012

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Tesla likes to do things its own way.

So while the company still refuses to report sales in the usual manner--at the end of every month like every other automaker--it does release bits and pieces of data on its corporate publicity site.

On Thursday, Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA] said that since June 22, when it started deliveries of its 2012 Model S, it has built 50 cars.

Of those, 29 are destined for customer deliveries--it says more than 12,200 buyers have put down deposits for the all-electric sport sedan--and 21 will go to Tesla stores for display.

Tesla is now building 10 cars a week, and company spokesperson Christina Ra told the San Francisco Chronicle that it intends to build 50 more in the next two to three weeks.

Production of the 2012 Tesla Model S will accelerate thereafter, and the company is standing by its goal of 5,000 deliveries of the car during calendar 2012--with 10,000 or more next year.

Collectively, those first 50 cars have already covered almost 40,000 miles, two-thirds of that distance during short test drives offered to depositors on the company's "Get Amped" drive program.

The first Model S sedans to be built are all Signature Series cars with the largest 85-kilowatt-hour battery pack, which is rated by the EPA at 265 miles of range.

2012 Tesla Model S, brief test drive, New York City, July 2012

2012 Tesla Model S, brief test drive, New York City, July 2012

Enlarge Photo

The lengthy post Thursday on the company's site also detailed a few minor specifications changes that it attributed to the need for maintaining high production quality levels.

VP George Blankenship noted that Tesla had temporarily deleted both the lighted vanity mirrors and the rear-seat reading lights from early Model S cars in order to maintain acceptable quality.

Wires remain in place for the rear-seat overhead lights, but the company said that it would be a while before it provides the lighted vanity mirrors due to concerns over the quality of parts provided.

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