photo by Steve Jurvetson (source: Wikimedia Commons)

California automaker Elon Musk and Tesla burst on the market with an all-electric sports car, the Tesla Roadster, in early 2010. But with base prices of $101,500 in the US, £86,950 in the UK and €84,000 in continental Europe, few budget-minded aspiring green drivers can afford the EV hotrod.

Now plans to sell a more moderately priced family car, or sedan (aka saloon car in the UK) called the Tesla Model S are pricking up ears. The base price of $49,900 in the US – after a federal tax credit of $7,500 – is still pretty steep, but it’s under half of the Roadster’s price tag and designed to appeal to a mass market.

From a March 2009 CNN report:

While automakers lay off staff and shut down plants in response to the economic downturn, one automaker announced Thursday that it will open a manufacturing plant in the United States, potentially creating hundreds of jobs in the area eventually chosen.

The Model S is sleek and attractive and promises to be a green status symbol for upper middle class drivers who are sick of paying at the pump. It is set to go on the market in 2012.

Check out this recent video report from CNN Eco Solutions for the latest on Tesla’s new Model S sedan.

Tesla electrifying the auto industry

Additional resources:

San Francisco Business Times – Tesla draws on tech world’s expertise as it looks to electrify the automotive industry