Tesla Motors will reportedly unveil its electric slated-for-launch-in-2014 Model X crossover ahead of the vehicle's official world debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show in January. Previous reports had hinted that the Model X would be unveiled at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. Needless to say, that unveiling never occurred.

The upcoming crossover will be built on the same platform as the automaker's Model S rides on. Tesla chief executive officer Elon Musk confirmed to Autocar that the Model X will be a blend between a MPV and a SUV. Autocar quotes Musk:
The time is right to unveil the car. I've seen the latest design for it and I'm very happy with it.
Musk says it will have class-leading interior volume, so we'd assume that seating for seven is a design priority, as it was with the Model S. Gilbert Passin, Tesla's manufacturing boss, talked of the automaker's ability to manufacture multiple body styles off the same platform:
We can build many models on the same line. The Model S is just one top hat on a platform that is very modular. All our pressing modules are very adjustable and we're working on improving that flexibility even further and making it faster at the moment.
So, perhaps the Model X is but one variant of numerous to come, including the long-rumored $30,000 "mainstream" electric. Will Musk and Wall Street Journal scribe Dan Neil make a bet on the Model X?


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 33 Comments
      Arun Murali
      • 3 Years Ago
      I am still waiting for the launch of Model S. I generally dont consider pushing forward as a good strategy. Its the right recipe for disaster, developing things and investing large amounts of moeny, when you dont really know what the market is or when you have not sold a single vehicle from your new strategy. Its always better to test the approach well enough before applying it everywhere. Pushing forward strategy generally only works on companies that are in markets that are likely to be filled by competitors if you dont move fast enough.
        skierpage
        • 1 Month Ago
        @Arun Murali
        I don't believe you're waiting for the Model S. What's your reservation #? "I generally dont consider pushing forward as a good strategy. ... "It's always better..." I'm glad Tesla isn't run by commenters on forums. Tesla wants to be a real car company. Real car companies sell more than one model and have multiple products in various stages of development & production. It is entirely appropriate for Tesla to try to exploit its platform and offer a bigger range of car models in its stores as fast as possible, even though it's hugely risky. If you're sure this is a bad strategy, order some put options on TSLA and make money, or run your own car company differently and let us all know how you get on.
        Grendal
        • 1 Month Ago
        @Arun Murali
        The only thing Tesla will be changing is the outer shell. There are hints of this in modern car platforms but this is the future of car design. The battery pack, motor, and mechanics will essentially be the same. Only the cosmetics will be different. Dashboard, seats, outer panels, and consoles will be different.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Considering the Model S already has the space of a crossover and beyond (mentioned in an ad/documentary video), Model X will have to bring in the luxury of higher seating arrangement and off-road capability of (sometimes) found on SUVs. Probably won't be a hybrid between true off-roader such as Range Rover and minivan, but might be interesting to see how it could be done to combine such elements on a crossover while still maintaining good economy of use. After all, crossovers mostly fall to those in need of a single all-round vehicle to do it all.
      Spec
      • 3 Years Ago
      My cynical take: Tesla needs to raise money again, so they have to announce something.
        EZEE
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Spec
        Tesla is not all talk, but they certainly seem to be largely so.
          Spec
          • 1 Month Ago
          @EZEE
          @Dan I think Tesla made cars but they are not currently making any new ones. I believe they stopped building Roadsters and are just selling off the last of the stock. The next car they actually make will be the Model S in 2012. But I may be wrong.
          Dan Frederiksen
          • 1 Month Ago
          @EZEE
          no, Tesla does actually make cars. just not as a viable business : ) they could call themselves CBM. cash burn motors. I believe their net loss so far is in the half billion dollar range. they are shooting for a cool billion of losses. I am confident they will achieve that at which point reality has to catch up to them and the ridiculously inflated stock price will collapse. I'd say in 2013 concerns will be raised and the illusion might carry them to 2014 before serious sinking sets in. should they manage to sustain above 5000 sales per year they might live a couple of years more. I think 5000 will be the critical threshold.
          EZEE
          • 1 Month Ago
          @EZEE
          Dan makes an interesting point - I have no idea on the cash figures, but lets say the $500 million burn rate is correct. Obviously any new car requires huge investment, and an electric car is a noble investment/experiment. HOWEVER Even at 5,000 per year, one would need a heck of a profit to make back the cash invested. Again - it is WORTH investing in this stuff...but, one must think of the realities of trying to be self-sufficient at some point. With Nissan/Chevy/Ford/Toyota, with their various approaches and technologies, they can afford to sink some cash into experimentation. Other's...the smaller electric car/bike makers - no idea what they have spent, but prolly not that much. Of course, we have 2-Wheel here, who will soon be selling his bikes, but then be corrupted by big money, and prior to going belly up, will be appointed green jobs czar by Obama.
          Dan Frederiksen
          • 1 Month Ago
          @EZEE
          spec, no I think they were lying on that. the roadster will only be sold in USA through 2011 because airbag laws makes the car illegal for 2012. it will still be sold in the rest of the world in 2012. Tesla dishonestly pretended that sales were ending because they were sold out, presumably in an attempt to get as many sales in before 2012.
      Ziv
      • 3 Years Ago
      Here is wishing Tesla all the luck in the world! Musk looks like he is hitting the ball out of the park with Spacex, could he double down and have the same type of success with BEV's? Having an American firm looking like they could be the pre-eminent manufacturer of quality BEV's within a year or two is incredible. Nissan may have the Leaf and Ford will have the FFE out soon, but the S is an order of magnitude better as an all around car. And performance-wise? No comparison. It will also have a net price that is nearly $20,000 higher, but with Fisker out there as well, it looks like American companies may be able to set the standard for luxury BEV's to start the move to electricity. And luxury may be the best end of the market to start the transition from, rather than a basic car like the Leaf, FFE or iMIEV. Not sure if that makes me a fan-boy, a patriot, a xenophobe or a sucker, maybe a little of each! LOL!
        Marco Polo
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Ziv
        @Ziv, "Not sure if that makes me a fan-boy, a patriot, a xenophobe or a sucker, maybe a little of each! LOL!" No, not at all, just rightly appreciative of a truly great American Businessman in the Walter P Chrysler tradition.
      EZEE
      • 3 Years Ago
      Right Wing Extremist here... We all know that SUV's are evil, starve children, and kill randomly, but, if the SUV is electric, is it still evil? Sort of a tree falling in the forest question... No wrong answers, just curious. If it is not evil, let's say I took an Excursion and dropped 4 billion batteries initial and made it electric. Now, a behemoth like that would be a big drain on the power grid. But it would still be electric. Evil, or not?
        EZEE
        • 1 Month Ago
        @EZEE
        I offered no opinion, nor was looking for any particular answer - I was just curious how it all worked out. Thanks to all who answered.
        EVSUPERHERO
        • 3 Years Ago
        @EZEE
        Not not evil, just stupid to drive one person to work in. The grid can take it, it would be domestic fuel and folks would think the bulge in your pants was not just a salami in your pocket when you arrived at work and stepped out of your big EV SUV and started walking to the office.
        Marco Polo
        • 1 Month Ago
        @EZEE
        @Ezee, I must be really evil, since I own the best EV SUV in existence! The Liberty EV Range Rover delivers exceptional range and off-road capacity, as well as comfortable highway efficiency. The LEVRR can tow a two horse float, 300 klm's between charges. Clearly, it's not intended as a urban commuter, (I drive a Blade EV in the City). Unfortunately, it's RHD, otherwise it would be a very useful troll exterminator!
        Dan Frederiksen
        • 3 Years Ago
        @EZEE
        there is nothing random about USA's genocide in Iraq and Afghanistan but yes SUVs are born of evil. an electric SUV is a lesser evil but still an unintelligent vehicle in that it is very inefficient and wasteful. if all the thoughtless people who drive SUVs will pay for electric SUVs I am ok with it but they wont. they will blame the cost of the car on the electric drive instead of realizing it is because of their mindless devotion to wasteful poser vehicles. should batteries suddenly drop a lot in price it is more likely to be viable because their foolishness wont be taxed as hard in the sales price. Jack Rickard of EVTV bought a Ford Edge that had been converted to battery drive. it is very hungry. he is converting a Cadillac Escalade, it will also be very hungry and the price is skyrocketing. but make no mistake, the same wasteful mentality is present in the model S as well. it is interesting to note that Tesla motors has so far entirely failed to appreciate the need for efficiency in its designs and they are making heavy vehicles that require a lot of batteries which means they cost a lot to make. this is my main concern with Tesla motors and I think it will kill them. as for high electricity usage, that's not ideal but would be a welcomed problem compared to now. an electric SUV would be much more efficient than its gasoline counterpart
        Grendal
        • 1 Month Ago
        @EZEE
        Not evil, but still wasteful and unecessary if you're using it as your everyday vehicle.
        2 Wheeled Menace
        • 1 Month Ago
        @EZEE
        Unfortunately i do find it to be still evil... Even if we are talking about electricity, it is important to conserve the stuff. Let me coin a new term here: watt guzzler.
        Smith Jim
        • 1 Month Ago
        @EZEE
        The answer to your question depends on the source of the electric power used to charge the giant-sized Excursion EV. If the energy source is coal then it's not good. If the electric energy comes from nuclear, solar, wind or hydro then it's better than a fossil powered Excursion.
          EZEE
          • 1 Month Ago
          @Smith Jim
          Nuclear? (makes sign of the cross) Although CO2 free, it's worse than an Excusion. Meltdowns and such.
        Spec
        • 1 Month Ago
        @EZEE
        It is a cross-over. Thus, it is a low profile more aerodynamic type of vehicle. Clearly not the DF uber light/aerodynamic dream but a move in the right direction and a huge improvement over a beast like the excursion. And yes, an electric version of a vehicle (even the Excursion) is a step up from the gas version of the same vehicle environmentally speaking. Gas motors are like ~20% efficient whereas electric motors are ~85% efficient. If you burn a fossil fuel in a big power plant, that big power plant is highly efficient at turning the fuel into electricity. In the worst case of an EV powered by purely coal-generated electricity, you are around break-even with a gas car on emissions/CO2. But since the grid is only 1/2 coal and the others sources are all cleaner, EVs are generally always better that standard ICE car. And with EVs, you can easily make things cleaner by moving the grid to more solar, wind, etc. So every time you read the standard right-wing talking points like EVs are dirty because they are coal-powered (not true as discussed above) or EVs use toxic batteries (no, modern automotive Li-Ions are not toxic), they are generally quite wrong.
        EZEE
        • 1 Month Ago
        @EZEE
        Initial = in it. Stupid autocorrect.
      BipDBo
      • 3 Years Ago
      I doubt that we are looking at a high riding, heavy duty Excursion-like SUV. This is a cross-over built on a sedan platform. I think that we will something between the Highlander and the new Explorer.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I am sure the Model 'X' will mean 'Xtra special', 'Xtra Nice', and 'Xtra Good' at bringing the other Automakers into shock at the flexibility the baby from California is able to adapt to! Would love to have a Tesla Fleet at EV Fest Electric Vehicle Show! (www.evfest.ca) - Maybe neXt year!
      super390
      • 3 Years Ago
      Maybe Tesla's sedan platform is more efficient than we're giving it credit for. 160 miles from a 42 kwh pack? Figure only 80% of the pack is actually used to preserve the batteries, thus 34 kwh / 160 miles = 212 watt-hours/mile. So it's not very different than the Leaf, Volt, or electric Focus or Prius. The wheelbase is plenty long enough for the crossover application, and the body will be made of aluminum, so it won't necessarily weigh more than a few hundred pounds more than the sedan. Normally we'd expect a crossover to have much worse aerodynamics, but then the Model S was pretty disappointing in that regard compared to cars like the Solectria Sunrise. A real effort on aerodynamics could stay close to the sedan's 0.26 cD and would set the X apart from its competition. Around town, at least, the X could represent an 85% improvement over its similarly-sized competition (300 wh/mile versus over 2000 wh/mile equivalent).
      Dan Frederiksen
      • 3 Years Ago
      that might inflate the bubble a little bit more before the great collapse. I'm just sayin' : ) if you have your life's savings in TSLA, don't say I didn't warn you
        EZEE
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dan Frederiksen
        You did smile.... :)
          cadd
          • 3 Years Ago
          @EZEE
          i wonder if he realizes it does nothing to stop us from hitting the thumbs down button...
          EZEE
          • 3 Years Ago
          @EZEE
          oh come on....a smile is progress....we can't expect kittens and rainbows over night...
        EZEE
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dan Frederiksen
        I hope he is wrong, however, the burn rate at Tesla is big - I would want to at least see some sign of a debt paydown prior to assuming they will survive. In the USA car maker's situations - one could see the same thing - GM had a burn rate faster, and accelerating, than their cash rates. Ford, had a shrinking loss, with sufficient cash reserves (and, this was when their stock was $1...which, still frosts my Right Wing Ass that I didn't buy).
      2 Wheeled Menace
      • 3 Years Ago
      Well... they do know their home market.... :( Let's get rid of the gas guzzler and replace it with a watt guzzler!
    • Load More Comments