TESLA MODEL X
Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk has revealed that an electric SUV-like model is in the company's plans. This comes amid news that Toyota is preparing to launch an all-electric version of its RAV4 compact SUV at the LA Auto Show this month.
Both models come as a result of the electric vehicle development and manufacturing partnership announced earlier this year by Toyota and all-electric specialist Tesla.
While Toyota's electric RAV4 looks to be the project's immediate priority - or at least the first vehicle to be born from the partnership - it's clear that Tesla plans to make the most of Toyota's SUV experience.
Speaking with Green Tech Media this week, Musk outlined a general window for the launch of the electric SUV, dubbed the 'Model X', with a debut expected one or two years after the introduction of the production Model S electric sedan.
"I'm hopeful we will unveil a prototype toward the end of next year. When it will go into production is harder to predict because we want to make sure the Model S production line is really operating very well and smoothly before we introduce another variant," Mr Musk said.
"But certainly within two... in less than two years from when we start Model S production, we will have the Model X."
Technical details for the RAV4 EV have yet to be revealed, although it is expected to be the only all-electric SUV on the market when it goes on sale in the US in 2012.
Tesla has confirmed that it will supply the RAV4 EV's battery packs and electric motor systems.
Tesla in Australia
Tesla Motors confirmed earlier this year that it will make an Australian market debut in the next two years.
There are no dates for Tesla's Australian launch, but with an all-new Roadster due in 2013, the brand is perhaps unlikely to make a local appearance before then.