Tesla Roadster Is Late For A Date

Like that date that kept you waiting while you nervously fixed your hair, the Tesla Roadster is officially late. Customers — among them San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom — will now have to wait until 2008 before the $98,000 electric hotrod is ready to leave the Tesla factory.

The San Carlos, Calif.-based company, which has raised around a $100 million in funding, says it now plans to ship 50 cars in the first quarter of 2008, followed by 600 more over the course of the year.
A little better news is that during testing one of the roadsters ran for 245 miles on the combined EPA cycle on a single charge.

Tesla previously planned to have the cars ready to ship this fall. In the company’s last letter to customers, in August, former CEO Martin Eberhard noted the production schedule was subject to crash and durability testing. Then Eberhard stepped down from his leadership post, and was replaced by Marks, former CEO of Flextronics (FLEX) and investor in Tesla Motors, as interim CEO.

Despite the fact that the cars aren’t yet on the market that hasn’t stopped over 600 customers from lining up. But we also wonder if there are more delays, how long their patience will last. Tesla also said it will soon stop taking reservations for the 2008 Roadsters and initiate a traditional waiting list. Each place in line will cost $5,000 for additional Roadsters “if and when an increase in production is announced.”

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