2013 Tesla Model S on Chilcotin Highway, Canada [photo: owner Vincent Argiro]Enlarge Photo
- The Gigafactory is still expected to supply lithium-ion battery packs for 500,000 electric vehicles a year by 2020
- The 2,500 or so existing Tesla Roadsters built from 2008 through 2012 will be offered an upgrade this year--but a replacement Roadster, built on the company's next-generation car platform, remains a consider time in the future
- Musk plans to stay in his current CEO role for at least four or five more years, "through [the start of] volume production of the third-generation car"
Elon Musk signs new 2013 Tesla Model S at Tesla Store opening, Austin, Texas [photo: John Griswell]Enlarge Photo
- Volume production of the Tesla Model X crossover utility vehicle will occur during the second quarter of 2015, and the final vehicle will differ in a number of respects from the concepts that have been shown to date; Musk commented that it's "bloody hard" to get the vehicle to the "amazing experience" the company wants it to be
- The third-generation Tesla electric car remains targeted at a $35,000 price and a 200-mile range, with a goal for market release "sort of the late 2016 timeframe"
- Following the end of the Toyota RAV4 EV powertrain contract, Musk said Toyota was "interested in doing sort of a high volume deal for battery packs and powertrains"--but Tesla was sufficiently constrained in its own production that it couldn't provide what Toyota wanted, although Musk said the two would "circle back maybe in a year or two" once those production constraints had eased
- Musk acknowledged that, "historically, our seats have not been the best," and said a new seat design would be launched this year--and offered as a retrofit to existing Model S owners
- Tesla abandoned the "Model E" name after Ford threatened to sue the company for using it, but now Tesla is looking at new model names for its third-generation car; Musk says, "I think we’ve got something that might be...good, might work out pretty well"
Again, for further details from the complete Tesla annual-meeting webcast, see the complete transcript.
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