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The Garage: Focus on autos | Nuts & Bolts

Release of electric Roadster delayed

September 29, 2007|Martin Zimmerman

Tesla Motors Inc. said this week that it was delaying production of its high-profile Roadster electric car until the first quarter of 2008 while it conducted further tests on the vehicle.

The San Carlos, Calif.-based company had hoped to get the first production models of its $98,000 high-performance car into the hands of buyers before the end of this year.

The delay is not due to problems with the car's electric powertrain or its battery pack, which consists of almost 7,000 lithium ion batteries, Tesla spokesman Darryl Siry said.

"Obviously, we set a schedule that was too aggressive, and now we are relaxing that a bit to ensure that the appropriate level of durability testing and validation is done," Siry said.

Tesla has booked about 600 orders for the car, Siry said. Current plans call for a first-year production run of 650 vehicles.

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--Martin Zimmerman

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