• Oct 29th 2010 at 2:56PM
  • 4
Toyota RAV4 – Click above for high-res image gallery

Tesla Motors, makers of the battery-powered Roadster and that much-hyped, upcoming Model S, signed a formal agreement in mid-October to assist Toyota with the electrification of its compact SUV, the RAV4. The agreement, a $60-million affair, laid out plans that would put Tesla in charge of developing the battery, power electronics module, electric motor, gearbox and software for Toyota's popular crossover.

With the tie-up finalized and development already underway, one question still remains: where will this battery-electric RAV4 be built? The obvious choice, it seems, is Tesla's plant in Fremont, CA. This plant, formerly known as NUMMI, offers 5.5-million square feet of space. In addition, Tesla's latest newsletter reads:
In the months since Tesla announced the purchase, negotiations with Nummi have enabled the repurposing of a complete paint shop, four mechanical press lines, a blanking line (used to cut sheets of aluminum before stamping), and a crane for use in the Model S production process. The purchased machinery will simply be retooled and tested before use. The Hydraulic Press Line has started to arrive; 50 trucks are en route to transport the entire line to Fremont.
So, it appear as if the tools are, or will soon be, in place to build a vehicle like the electric RAV4, but neither company is willing to confirm the models final production site just yet, Tesla's vice president of manufacturing, Gilbert Passin, told Green Car Advisor that "it's being decided" and will "be announced pretty soon."

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Hmmmm... I wonder if I'm the only one whose nose itches with the smell of irony here...

      Would be cool if they really build them there though. Even cooler if they were willing to sell them under 30k.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Man..... good news day so far.

      Any of you remember pre-2008 when electric drive was sort of a fringe thing and big companies were real sheepish about it? Most stories on autoblog were about overpriced and often questionable conversions, bad looking custom cars, and NEVs. Electric cars were kind of a joke, other than the Tesla and some 'mid life crisis' conversions.

      Good times.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Watch out!! With the way these daily Tesla press releases are boosting their stock price, we might have to tolerate this rubbish news about stuff that might be "announced pretty soon." from now until WHEN-EVER the first Model S rolls off the line. Give me a break!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Tesla did not issue a press release here it's just a newsletter update, and also their stock price has not been pumped up, it's remained pretty much flat since the IPO. People are curious as to what Tesla is doing as things have actually been pretty quiet, so I am not sure what exactly you are complaining about.

        Calm your hormones, sir.
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