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Tesla S Electric Sedan

Tesla S Electric SedanHaving already racked up 250 sales of its electric Roadsters to the eco-conscious elite, California-based Tesla Motors has managed to zap out quite a name for itself lately on the forefront of electric cars. But replacing a few Ferraris with electric equivalents won’t save the world anytime soon, and Tesla now wants to start putting more electric cars in the hands of the everyman with the Tesla S.

Unveiled on Thursday, the Tesla S has been designed as a more practical and economical version of its two-door, sports-oriented predecessor. According to the company, it will seat up to seven people, drive up to 300 miles on a single charge (with a long-run battery pack) and sprint from 0 to 60 miles per hour in under six seconds. Not bad for a vehicle that allegedly costs under three cents per mile to run.

Of course, that’s all neglecting to mention the incredible styling, which is bound to draw more buyers than any numbers and statistics. The Tesla S’ muscular rear body lines, swooping grill and pronounced wheel wells all clearly draw inspiration from luxury brands like Aston Martin, Lexus, and Audi.

The all-important cost for this electric exotic will come to $49,900, after a government-sponsored $7,500 federal tax credit. That’s no small chunk of change, but Tesla is painting it as an initial investment to be recouped through lowered operating costs over time – CEO Elon Musk says it’s more like buying a $35,000 gasoline-powered car if you factor those savings in.

Would-be buyers can preorder their cars now, but they’ll be waiting until at least 2011 to climb behind the wheel, when Tesla anticipates the first models will roll off the proposed production line in California. Right now, the only Tesla showrooms are in that state, but the company hopes to open another in Chicago this spring, and more in London, New York, Miami, Seattle, Washington DC and Munich by the year’s end.

More information can be found at Tesla Motors.

Tesla S Electric Sedan

Tesla S Electric Sedan