Tesla Model S Right Hand Drive Production Starts Soon; First Deliveries In UK In March
For most of the world the news that RHD (right hand drive) production cars will soon be rolling down the line at Tesla’s factory in Fremont, California, doesn’t mean a heck of a lot.
If you are somewhere like the U.K. or in Asia, it means quite a bit more. The Model S had originally expected to arrive in RHD form in early 2013, but had been delayed a bit as other Eurozone production took precedence.
The exact where and when of the first delivery of the Model S in RHD was still a bit of a question.
Thankfully, a UK Tesla store opening in London (specifically the Westfield White City mega-mall) and a special guest speaker in the form of CEO Elon Musk meant information would be flowing.
During the informal speech at the new London outlet, Mr. Musk said that the U.K. will indeed be the first country in the world to receive a RHD Model S, and that first deliveries would happen this March.
As always Tesla stressed at the event that the company can’t afford to do a lot of marketing, so the first UK Model S would go to a “high profile” person; the Tesla CEO would not say who at this point.
In regards to installing Supercharging to support the Model S in the UK, Mr. Musk said that the first of the Supercharger Network would be operation before the end of the year, while noting that by the end of 2014 Tesla will have the “whole country covered.”
Considering a liter of gas is about £1.35 right now in the UK ($8.25 USD/gallon), the prospective of free “fuel” for life and a nation-wide infrastructure sounds like a fairly strong selling feature to us.
Despite now having two boutique stores operation, the cost of the Model S has still not been officially released. Naturally that question also came up at the grand opening of the Tesla London location. The answer? An estimate of low to mid £50s (£55,000 = $89,000 USD)