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PHOTO CAPTION: Tesla Model S nearing end of assembly process at plant in Fremont, Ca.

Best Guestimate: Tesla Model S Surpasses 25,000 Units

Tesla doesn't publish official production numbers, leaving everyone outside the company to guess at the numbers. Here's the best guess to date.

Published: 06-Jan-2014

Without putting an exact figure on it, we can assume that Model S number 25,000 recently rolled its way out of Tesla’s Fremont plant in California. While it’s only been on the market for 18 months, the electric sedan has outsold Tesla’s first car, the 2008 Roadster, ten to one in half the time.

Hybridcars.com, who originally made the claim, say that the figure may be as high as 26,000 after collating sales reports from Tesla’s various markets. Keeping up with precise numbers of Teslas sold is difficult as the company only release quarterly reports.

By way of comparison, in August global sales for the Nissan LEAF, currently priced at just $28,800, surpassed 75,000, which only shows what rude health the global luxury car market currently enjoys. The numbers also reflect the fact that the Tesla Model S lacks any credible rival.

Early in November the company said it was building 550 examples of the Model S every week with more than 19,000 cars on the road. Sales are set to continue growing as Tesla’s Supercharger network expands substantially in North America and Europe. The first Chinese deliveries of the Model S are also scheduled for the first quarter of 2014, although that hasn’t stopped the odd car from being imported via Hong Kong.

In anticipation of this growth, Tesla renewed its agreement with battery supplier Panasonic, and a deal is now in place for the Japanese electronics giant to supply at least 1.8 billion lithium-ion battery cells over the next four years – roughly three times the previous volume. These battery cells will find themselves in the Model S, the new Model X SUV and Tesla’s breakthrough car, the $35,000, 200-mile Model E in 2016. That’s the plan, at least.

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