Much Needed Cash and Expertise for TeslaTesla had already announced a deal with Daimler at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show, but this is bigger. The first deal involved supplying battery packs for the Smart Electric Drive, but this new deal, which involves a 10% equity buy by Daimler, makes for a much closer partnership. Tesla CEO Elon Musk said: "Where I see the significant value, the mutually beneficial partnership, is that Tesla brings expertise on the battery electric front, Daimler brings expertise associated with everything else on the automobile."
No word on exactly what amount was paid, but according to Wired, Daimler officials said its investment is "a double-digit million sum for a nearly 10 percent stake in Tesla Motors." This doesn't seem to value the company at a very high number, but considering the state of the economy, this might be fair.
Access to New Battery Technology?
Does this mean that Tesla will start using Li-Tek battery cells down the line? Maybe. Daimler owns 49.1% of that company, and Elon Musk has said that Tesla is battery agnostic (as long as the battery meets the tech specs, of course). Maybe the Model S will use them...
This development certainly will help Tesla survive the recession.
More Tesla Motors
Tesla Now Has More Than 1,000 Reservations for Model S Electric Car
Tesla Model S Electric Car: 300 Miles Range, Seats 5+2, 0-60 MPH in 5.6 Seconds (Slideshow)
David Letterman and Elon Musk Play Electric Car Good Cop/Bad Cop
Mercedes Wants to Sell Cars with a Drag Coefficient of 0.20 Cd Within 5 Years
Detroit Auto Show 2009: Mercedes BlueZERO Concept in the Flesh