• Oct 14, 2010
Toyota RAV4 – Click above for high-res image gallery

In a regulatory filing submitted on Wednesday, Tesla Motors revealed that it has signed a $60 million contract with Toyota to develop electric powertrain components for a battery-powered RAV4. This agreement states that Tesla will develop the battery, power electronics module, electric motor, gearbox and software for the popular crossover. The filing builds upon an earlier announcement when Toyota and Tesla stated their intentions to partner on the development of future electric vehicles.

Tesla's filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission reads:
On October 6, 2010, Tesla Motors, Inc. ("Tesla") entered into a Phase 1 Contract Services Agreement (the "Agreement") with Toyota Motor Corporation ("TMC") for the development of 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. Pursuant to the Agreement, based on preliminary specifications, TMC will pay Tesla approximately $60 million for the development services to be provided by Tesla. The parties will mutually agree to the final specifications, deliverables and payment amounts and schedule within 60 days of the execution of the Agreement. This amount will be paid in various installments during the term of the Agreement.
Previous reports suggest that a production version of the electric RAV4 should be ready to whiz down the streets by 2012, but we should get a first glimpse of a the RAV4 EV prototype at the Los Angeles Auto Show next month. Hit the jump the read Tesla's formal filing in its entirety. Hat tip to VFX!



[Source: Securities and Exchange Commission]
UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

Washington, DC 20549

FORM 8-K

CURRENT REPORT

Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of

The Securities Exchange Act of 1934

Date of Report (Date of earliest event reported)

October 6, 2010


Tesla Motors, Inc.

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

3500 Deer Creek Road

Palo Alto, California 94304

Check the appropriate box below if the Form 8-K filing is intended to simultaneously satisfy the filing obligation of the registrant under any of the following provisions (see General Instruction A.2):

¨ Written communications pursuant to Rule 425 under the Securities Act (17 CFR 230.425)

¨ Soliciting material pursuant to Rule 14a-12 under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.14a-12)

¨ Pre-commencement communications pursuant to Rule 14d-2(b) under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.14d-2(b))

¨ Pre-commencement communications pursuant to Rule 13e-4(c) under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.13e-4(c))

Item 1.01 Entry into a Material Definitive Agreement.

On October 6, 2010, Tesla Motors, Inc. ("Tesla") entered into a Phase 1 Contract Services Agreement (the "Agreement") with Toyota Motor Corporation ("TMC") for the development of 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. Pursuant to the Agreement, based on preliminary specifications, TMC will pay Tesla approximately $60 million for the development services to be provided by Tesla. The parties will mutually agree to the final specifications, deliverables and payment amounts and schedule within 60 days of the execution of the Agreement. This amount will be paid in various installments during the term of the Agreement.

Tesla and TMC previously entered into an agreement to initiate the development of an electric powertrain system for the RAV4 in July 2010 and TMC purchased $50.0 million of Tesla's common stock in a private placement transaction that closed immediately subsequent to the closing of Tesla's initial public offering in July 2010.

SIGNATURES

Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the registrant has duly caused this report to be signed on its behalf by the undersigned hereunto duly authorized.

TESLA MOTORS, INC.

By:

/s/ Deepak Ahuja

Deepak Ahuja

Chief Financial Officer

Date: October 13, 2010


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  • 17 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I would totally trade in my 2008 Rav4 for a Rav4 EV! :D
      • 4 Years Ago
      $60M seems like next to nothing for the development of an electric vehicle. I guess Tesla is just playing a small role?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Really? I thought it sounded pretty significant. If they're just developing a power train for a Rav4 that essentially already exists then shouldn't $60mm do a decent amount?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Why hasn't this affected Tesla's stock? No reaction at all, it seems.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "Why hasn't this affected Tesla's stock? No reaction at all, it seems."

        It's because it's really not a big deal at all. Read the press release . Tesla is not supplying components (this is where the real money is made in automotive.) They are only contracted to develop a power train and the $60M will be piece mailed out incrementally pending technology gateway approval.

        This is a great way for a big OEM like Toyota to gain insight on the technology, cancel the dev program and then apply what they like at a later date on their own. AKA, the Brain Suck. Toyota has everything to gain....

      • 4 Years Ago
      Sounds like a PR move.

      Tesla's battery pack design is, let's say... impractical. Consisting of thousands of cylindrical laptop battery cells; a massive waste of space, money, and weight... and a potential maintenance nightmare down the road.

      I don't see why any major auto manufacturer would use it. A pack consisting of Car-sized lithium cells ( about 10-20 times the size ) will waste less space, require less wiring, simplify battery management, bring lower weight, and simplify troubleshooting when a cell goes pear shaped 5-10 years down the line.

      I am still trying to figure out why these two have teamed up. Toyota has been working on electric drive since the 90's, maybe even earlier than that.
      • 4 Years Ago
      they need to work out the plug situation first...
      Carpenter
      • 4 Years Ago
      Very nice Toyota! Should be a very interesting future for Toyota...:-)
      • 4 Years Ago
      does this mean that the Rav4 will still be one of the fastest Toyotas or will it go the way of the Prius?
      • 4 Years Ago
      There's no components supply here. This says development services.

      That simply means Tesla provides engineering know-how to design the systems.

      If there is a components supply contract, that I guess will be announced later. But this is unlikely. Toyota has more purchasing power and better supply connections than Tesla ever has or ever will. And if it came down to manufacturing it yourself (as opposed to buying it from a supplier), Toyota could manufacture it cheaper than Tesla ever could too, due to efficiencies of scale.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Yes, the best small (ugh) CUV will get even better. It would be a miracle if they return the manual transmission.
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