Tesla is hoping to bring luxury electric cars to the masses with a smaller and cheaper BMW 3 Series rival by 2016, Auto Express has learned. It follows the success of the Model S, which outsold the BMW 7 Series, Mercedes S-Class and Audi A8 in the US in first quarter of 2013.
Known internally as the 'Third Generation', the compact saloon will be significantly cheaper than the circa Model S, which ranges from around £60,000 to £80,000, so expect a starting price closer to £35,000.
"The idea is to make the technology accessible to everyone," a Tesla spokesman told us. "The Model X comes next, at the end of next year, followed by the smaller car probably around two years after that."
While the Model X SUV and the Model S will share virtually identical platforms, the 'Third Generation' (the Tesla Roadster is the first generation) is so called because it will sit on an all-new aluminium platform. And with less weight to haul around the batteries can be smaller while achieving the same theoretical range as the Model S - 300 miles at 55mph.
Tesla is also planning to roll out its rapid charge supercharger stations across the UK as soon as next year. The stations can top up 50 per cent of the battery in just 20 minutes, and Tesla customers have free use of them for life.