SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Electric car startup Tesla Motors and Toyota Motor Corp. said that they plan to cooperate on the development of electric vehicles.
Toyota has agreed to purchase $50 million of Tesla’s common stock issued in a private placement to close immediately subsequent to the closing of Tesla’s currently planned initial public offering (IPO). In January, Tesla announced the IPO. Goldman, Sachs & Co., Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan and Deutsche Bank Securities are acting as the joint book-running managers for the offering.
Last year, Daimler AG acquired an equity stake of nearly 10 percent of Tesla.
Tesla's goal is to produce affordable electric cars to mainstream buyers. Palo Alto, Calif.-based Tesla has delivered more than 1,000 Roadsters to customers in North America, Europe and Asia.
Separately, Tesla has purchased the former NUMMI factory in Fremont, Calif., where it will build the Model S sedan and future Tesla vehicles. As recently as April of 2010, the NUMMI factory was used by Toyota and GM to produce various vehicles. That venture recently ended, when GM and Toyota pulled the plug.
The Model S is an electric premium sedan. The sedan, which Tesla unveiled in 2009, has an anticipated base price of $49,900, including a federal tax credit. With an optional extended-range battery pack, the Model S will travel over 300 miles per charge.
In Janurary, Tesla Motors and Panasonic announced that they will collaborate to develop next-generation battery cells for electric vehicles.
Tesla will use Panasonic’s battery cells in their newest battery packs. The cells are comprised of nickel-based lithium ion chemistry.
Panasonic is midway through a three-year $1 billion investment in lithium-ion battery cell R&D and production facilities. The first of the new facilities in Suminoe, Japan will begin production in April 2010.
Tesla’s current battery strategy incorporates proprietary packaging using cells from multiple battery suppliers. This new cell will also be compatible with other cell form factors to enable the continuation of Tesla’s strategy of using cells from multiple suppliers.