Startups Charge into Electric Car Market

High-end vehicles may have trouble competing with major automakers

Published: 29-Jan-2009

DETROIT -- Several startup automakers are in hot pursuit of electric-powered vehicles, but they face an uphill road as they challenge major car companies such as Toyota and General Motors in the race for the green car market.

California-based Tesla Motors Inc. and Fisker Automotive displayed cars at the North American International Auto Show, grabbing attention with sleek electric-drive vehicles that combine environmentally friendly chic with sports car sex appeal.

Tesla, which started in 2004, showcased its $109,000 all-electric two-seat Roadster sports car at the Detroit show and hopes to unveil its Model S electric car in late February, CEO Elon Musk said in an address before the Society of Automotive Analysts.

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