Tesla Model X prototype in Culver City, California [photo by Instagram user jmtibs]Enlarge Photo
Get out the binoculars, because there's been a 2015 Tesla Model X has been seen on public roads.
Reportedly the only complete Model X in existence, the plug-in crossover was spotted about 10 miles from Tesla's design center in Hawthorne. Tesla last showed a Model X at the opening of its Palo Alto store in October.
The appearance of a Model X in public indicates that Tesla is preparing to unveil the production model to the public.
The 2014 Detroit Auto Show is next week, and Tesla has a press conference scheduled for 11:40 am on Tuesday. It's possible the Model X may be revealed then.
Tesla first unveiled the Model X in February 2012 at a highly-publicized event at the headquarters of CEO Elon Musk's SpaceX.
Since then, the all-electric crossover and its nifty "falcon doors" have impressed crowds at auto shows and events around the country. Tesla showed a revised prototype with a new interior at last year's Detroit show.
The Model X rides on the same platform as the Model S sedan and is expected to use much of the same hardware, including the 85-kilowatt-hour battery pack.
However--befitting its crossover design--the Model X will be the first Tesla offered with all-wheel drive.
Tesla originally planned to unveil the Model X in late 2013, but pushed the launch date back roughly one year to late 2014 to focus on the Model S.
Only small numbers of the vehicle are expected to roll off the assembly line at the end of the year, with volume production beginning in the first quarter of 2015.