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Tesla reveals big plans to expand European presence

Car company will opening 30 new service centers, along with a slew of new Supercharger stations

Technology trends and news by Steven Loeb
March 4, 2014 | Comments
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/356d

Electric car manufacturer Tesla has been on a tear when it comes to overseas sales. So much so that combined sales in Asia and Europe should be double that of North America by the end of the year.

As you might imagine, the company wants to take full advantage of the opportunity, so it is going to be expanding pretty heavily in Europe, opening more than 30 new service centers and stores across the continent, it was revealed at the Geneva Motor Show on Tuesday.

The expansion also means a big expansion of Tesla's Supercharger network, which allow drivers of its Model S to travel long distances across Europe for free.

Currently, there are 14 superchargers across Europe, mostly in Germany and Norway, with two in the Netherlands, and one in both Switzerland and Austria.

Superchargers are typically located near amenities, such as roadside diners, cafes, and shopping centers. They allow road trippers to stop and have their Model S charged when they’re done. Tesla says on its website that it will soon be rolling out 120 kW Superchargers, which are 33% faster than its current version and can replenish half a charge in as little as 20 minutes. 

“By the end of this year, we expect you will be able to travel almost anywhere in Europe using only Superchargers,” Tesla co-founder and CEO Elon Musk said in a statement.

The company expects a big part of its European growth to come from  the United Kingdom, where it is set to introduce right hand drive versions of the Model S. It will also be introducing leasing and financing options that are similar to a program the company recently launched in Germany with rental company Sixt.

It should be noted that expansion in Europe does not mean that Tesla is giving up on North America.

In fact, this news comes less than a week since the company announced that it was looking to raise $1.6 billion, through the selling of convertible senior notes, to facilitate its expansion both at home and abroad.

Tesla also said that part of the money would also be going toward the development of the Tesla Gigafactory. The Gigafactory plant, where the company will manufacture the batteries for its line of electric cars, will be built in one of four states: either Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico or Texas. So obviously the company still sees an opportunity in the U.S., even if Europe might currently offer a greater opportunity. 

There are currently a total of 78 Supercharger locations across the United States all across the country. The company says that this year it will be able to provide access to 80% of the population of the U.S. and Canada, with that number bumped up to 98% in 2015.

Shares of Tesla are currently up 1.76% , or $4.42, to $254.98 a share.

(Image source: teslamotors.com)


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