Thursday, February 17, 2011

Tesla Working on All-Electric Toyota RAV4 and Lexus RX types

Electric car partners Toyota Motor Corp. and Tesla Motors will develop battery-powered prototypes of the Japanese automaker's Toyota RAV4 and Lexus RX crossovers according to a news report from Businessweek citing "a person familiar with the matter". Toyota declined to confirm the models.
Earlier this month, a Tesla executive announced that the maker of the electric Roadster will deliver two EV prototypes to Toyota by the end of July, without providing any specific details about the cars.
The unnamed insider added that while Toyota also plans to test an all-electric Corolla, the two SUV models "are better suited to the weight of Tesla's battery pack".

"We anticipate range and acceleration exceeding that of other announced electric vehicles of this class," Elon Musk, chief executive officer of Tesla, said today in an e-mailed message to the news agency.
Toyota partnered up with Tesla in May 2010. As part of the deal, Tesla acquired Toyota's joint-venture NUMMI plant in California to build its Model S and other vehicles, while Toyota bought a US$50 million stake in electric-car producer.
Daimler AG, the company that owns Mercedes-Benz, also invested about US$50 million in Tesla in May 2009, however, the German company reduced its 10 per cent stake in the electric carmaker to around 5 per cent by selling part of the investment to Aabar Investments PJSC, Daimler's largest shareholder.

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