Elon Musk may not be making a ton of friends in Texas, but the folks in the UK sure seem to like the Tesla Motors head honcho. UK Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has appointed Musk to serve as an advisor to the British government and as it tries to speed up adoption of plug-in vehicles, the Environmental Leader says.
Clegg says he's hoping the UK will emerge as a "global leader in the production and adoption" of plug-in vehicles. The UK plans to invest about $640 million between 2010 and 2015 building out publicly accessible charging stations and researching plug-in technological advancements.
Earlier this week, Business Insider reported that the Tesla Model S, which is about to go on sale in the UK, will start at a tidy $88,000 for the 60-kWh model, though government incentives can get that price down to about $80,000. Still, the UK base price is about $20,000 higher than the US base price.
Still, the UK reception for Musk is a heck of a lot less frosty than in states like Texas, which is taking exception to Musk's efforts to skip the traditional dealership distribution channel in order to sell directly to the public. Tesla legislators recently and pointedly excluded the Tesla Model S from its list of electric and natural-gas vehicles that will be eligible for state rebates slated to start next year. Texas has set aside about $3.8 million to fund the program but it only includes cars that are sold at dealerships. With Texas having what's believed to be the strictest laws forbidding automakers from selling directly to the public, Texas residents must go out of state to buy Teslas.