Tesla Motors announced last week that it was definitely going to build ist Model S at the former NUMMI factory in Fremont, California. Or it might not. This isn't the first announcement about where this car might be produced. That was way back in February 2007 when the car was still being referred to as Whitestar and it was planned to be built in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Along the way it was also going to be built in San Jose and most recently southern California.
The big surprise press conference held last week with CEO Elon Musk, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda caught everyone completely by surprise and apparently almost none of the i's have been dotted, nor have many t's been crossed. At the time, Musk announced that Tesla would be buying one of three parcels that make up the NUMMI facility, that being the one that includes the actual building facility. Regulatory documents filed by Tesla this week in advance of its upcoming initial public stock offering indicate that Tesla is to pay Toyota $42 million for the building out of its IPO proceeds. That price, however, does not include production equipment, which may go a long ways toward explaining why Tesla got such a "good deal" compared to the $130 million that Fisker paid for a closed General Motors plant in Delaware.
If Tesla wants any of the equipment left behind at the NUMMI facility, it will have to buy that separately at an upcoming auction. Of course, it won't actually need most of it for some time since the company only plans to build about 20,000 cars per year in a plant with a capacity 25 times that.
The product collaboration agreement between Toyota and Tesla is also just that so far, an agreement to collaborate with no additional details specified right now. And that $50 million that Toyota is to invest in Tesla? That will only happen if the IPO actually happens in 2010 and it will be at the offering price. So Toyota's investment may garner it either more or less stock than the nine percent that Daimler got last year for the same price.