• Jun 12th 2008 at 11:58AM
  • 5
Tesla Motors has apparently reached some kind of technology deal with German automaker Daimler. Tesla Chairman Elon Musk reportedly told Fox Business news that, "We have a small deal that could potentially lead to a very big deal." While no real information is available at the moment we will be more than happy to don our speculation beanie and ponder what this might mean. There are numerous possibilities here.

It's certainly possible that Tesla may be licensing some of their battery management technology to Daimler for use in their own hybrid and electric vehicle projects. Another possible scenario may be that Daimler will supply engines to Tesla for the WhiteStar sedan. Tesla has said that it will offer a range extended version of the WhiteStar. The 1.0L three cylinder from the Smart ForTwo might make a good driver for the generator (that sounds like a vaguely familiar specification). Supplying the engine to Tesla would help Daimler increase volumes of the Smart engine, allowing them to drive down costs. We're still waiting to hear back from Tesla with a comment and we'll update you when we hear something.

Update: Tesla VP Darryl Siry declined comment on the matter.

[Source: Just-Auto - sub. req'd, thanks to everyone who sent this in]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 5 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      Here's a link to the Fox Business video where Elon makes the small mention of the Daimler deal.

      http://www.foxbusiness.com/video/index.html?playerId=videolandingpage&streamingFormat=FLASH&referralObject=1341349&referralPlaylistId=1292d14d0e3afdcf0b31500afefb92724c08f046

      VP13 looks amazing in sunlight.
      • 7 Years Ago
      At one time they were promising a first look at the Whitestar in the second quarter. There's only about 2 1/2 weeks to make good on that, unless they are going to call a delay, and maybe blame the Fisker mess.

      It would be nice to see something, if not a prototype maybe a mockup, clay model, sketch, anything.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I suspect Daimler is more interested in the high efficiency Tesla motor and inverter, perhaps to use on a planned plug-in serial hybrid. Daimler could also use it for their next H2 fuel cell prototype, but that will never become a "big thing".

      While the Tesla battery system is an EV engineering marvel, Tesla admits it isn't well suited for plug-in hybrids. Of course, if Daimler decides to build an EV, that would be a big thing indeed!

      As for what Tesla is interested in, I suspect you're right - about the only thing Daimler has of interest to them would be a lightweight compact "range extender" engine for a future model.

      James, that Youtube vid you keep pushing has been removed. Moreover, we are well aware of Zap and its reputation, and we're not impressed.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Daimler is not going to buy batteries from Tesla - too expensive. It might be that Daimler will supply engines AND batteries to Tesla for the Whitestar.

      Engines from the Smart car makes sense, but Mercedes is also going to be using batteries from Saft/Johnson Controls (if I recall correctly) for their S class hybrid.

      Tesla's volumes are too low by themselves to get volume pricing, and Mercedes volumes won't be that high either. But if they combined the two (a la cooperative buy) they may be able to bring the costs down significantly.
      • 7 Years Ago
      These Cars dont cost 100,000. could you implicate the "whitestar" or the "roadster" into the Pizza or taxi business. Zap cars can make you money, be it taxis, delivery's, advertising, catering, BLA BLA BLA ETC

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4n6iK9yQa7M