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PHOTO CAPTION: 2009-2011 Toyota RAV4 Sport is due for major facelift, including all-electric drive option being developed by Telsa Motors

Toyota To Pay Tesla $60M for Electric RAV4 Development

Agreement is in addition to $50M Toyota paid for shares of Telsa in July 2010.

Published: 14-Oct-2010

PALO ALTO -- Tesla Motors disclosed on October 6, 2010 in its 8-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that Toyota Motors will pay it $60M (¥487M) to develop for it an all-electric version of the RAV4 sport utility vehicle. Under the terms of the agreement as spelled out in the filing, Tesla will develop "a validated powertrain system, including a battery, power electronics module, motor, gearbox and associated software, which will be integrated into an electric vehicle version of the RAV4."

The filing further notes that the parties will agree on final specifications, deliverables and payment amounts and schedules within 60 days of the execution of the agreement. This agreement is in addition to the $50 million that TMC paid back in July 2010 for an undisclosed amount of Telsa (NASDAQ: TSLA) shares are part of a private placement made prior to the Palo Alto-based electric car makers IPO.

Toyota had previously developed an all-electric version of the RAV4 under the terms of the California ZEV mandate. Some 1,500 were built and leased to corporate fleets, with approximately 300 sold to private citizens, including a number of Hollywood celebrities including actor-director Tom Hanks, Alexandra Paul and Ed Begley, Jr. In addition to Toyota's financial interests in Tesla, Daimler-Benz has also invested in the firm, and is believed to be taping its expertise to develop its own line of electric vehicles.

The SEC filing did not disclose when or how many of the vehicles are to be delivered to Toyota. The Japanese car giant has announced that it plans to bring two electric cars to market by 2012, presumably including the RAV4, as well as six new hybrid models, two that will be entirely new models under the Prius name plate.

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