During his keynote speech to the Society of Automotive Analysts Outlook conference in Detroit this morning, Tesla CEO Elon Musk also dropped a few hints about the Model S. Most of the work on the Model S is on hold until Tesla gets its house in better financial shape, but some continues. During the cutbacks last fall, Musk cut the expenditures on Model S from 30 percent of the company's resources to 10 percent. However, powertrain development is still moving ahead and Musk indicated that if the engineering team is satisfied with the car's performance they will likely unveil it at a special event in late February.

As we knew before, Tesla will be offering the Model S with several battery options starting with a 150-mile range pack at the $57,500 base price. The top option will be a pack using cells with a more advanced chemistry that offers a 300-mile range. Tesla is also developing fast swap battery packs. The removal and installation of the Roadster pack is about an 8 hour operation. This may or may not be part of the standard Model S feature set. Tesla has also developed a fast charger that can top up the battery in 45 minutes. One option being considered is to offer pack rentals for Model S owners planning a longer road trip. They would be able to temporarily get a 300-mile pack installed that would facilitate longer trips. One other tidbit is that Tesla Roadster customers will have priority to snag a postion in line once Tesla begins to accept orders on the Model S. We'll have more soon.

[Source: Elon Musk]