Electric car maker Tesla (s TSLA) has scored a $10 million grant from the California Energy Commission to help it make its next-generation electric SUV/minivan the Model X, Forbes reports. The article says that Tesla will use the grant to hire another 700 workers in 2014, and Tesla will match the grant with $50 million of its own funds.
Tesla unveiled the Model X — a crossover vehicle with “falcon” wing doors (double-hinged doors) that could appeal to women and families — in February of this year. The Model X will be built on the Model S platform and will be priced in the same range as the Model S. Here’s a short video we made with the Model X earlier this year:
Tesla is in a bit of a tricky spot right now. Earlier this month, the company announced that it is making Model S cars more slowly than expected, and that it plans to raise more money. Tesla CEO Elon Musk says the company is only raising more money for risk reduction.
Still, this is one of the most difficult times for Tesla, as it needs to ramp up production of the Model S at a rapid rate and transition into being a more mainstream auto manufacturer. Tesla also recently announced that it is building out solar-powered electric car charging stations that it will let Model S owners use for free.