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We just received an email from George Blankenship with some new information:

1. Deliveries for North America begin in mid-2012
2. First 1000 cars will be North American Model S Signature Series with 300 mile range battery.
3. After the Model S Signature Series deliveries for NA they will continue with the 300 mile batteries, followed by the 230 and 160 options later in 2012.
4. Delivery of European left-hand drive to begin in late 2012. In mid 2013 they plan to begin delivering right-hand drive for Europe and Asia. Each launch will begin with a limited edition Signature Series.
5. Expect to produce 5,000 units in 2012 and ramp up to 20,000 units per single shift in 2013.
6. Price of the US base Model S with 160 mile battery is $49,900 AFTER the $7,500 Federal Tax Credit. The 230 mile range battery is expected to price at about $10,000 more and the 300 mile battery option at about $20,000 more than base.
7. Still working on final pricing and options, including the Signature Series. Expect to have updates on Worldwide pricing this summer.

That about covers the news.

$57400 - $77400 no too bad in US. $10000 per additional maybe 20-25kWh is a bit high I think, that is $500-$400/kWh. Especially 230-300 change, that means that higher Ah cells have so much higher price that it negates the tech advantage. Well, I hope that battery price drops in few years.

Well, they did say "about" in the release, so it is subject to change. It would be bad press to provide a low estimate. I'm reasonably confident that it won't be more than $10k once production starts.

My rough guess would have been an extra $7,500 for the 230 pack, but that wasn't based on kWh or anything, just an assumption that $5k wouldn't be enough and $10k would chase away buyers.

This was on CNN Money, as well. That article also said that the rear-facing child seats would be optional - but that wasn't from a direct Tesla quote, that was just the journalist providing info on the car.

@Tom A

I actually read somewhere on this site (or possibly heard from a Tesla Rep) that the rear seats are optional and not standard

It is in Model S FAQ here:

under features:

"How does Model S seat seven people?

Model S seats five adults and two children. Model S features two front seats, a rear bench seat for three adults, and optional rear facing jump seats designed for two children. The jump seats will be similar to those available in some station wagons."

Only bad news for me, Europeans only get their Model S end of 2012 and the reservationsnumbers gone down the toilet...

Yeah I know it's whining, but waiting with a smile and thinking that at least you have reserved it 2 years ago and will be one of the first ones (somewhoen mid 2012) made it much easier than after this info where you probably fall back somewhen 2013...

Waiting sucks...