Tesla Motors Pays Back Energy Department Loan 9 Years Early

Electric automaker Tesla Motors just announced that it has paid back the nearly half a billion dollars the Department of Energy lent it in 2010. According to a company press release, today’s wire transfer of $451.8 million dollars follows two other payments in the last year and a half. U.S. taxpayers could see a $12 million profit, in addition to a thriving company employing thousands.

The loan was offered in 2009 through the Department of Energy’s Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Loan Program, which began during the Bush Administration in 2007 and was funded in 2008. The program has resulted in $34.4 billion in loans and the creation of roughly 60,000 jobs.

This announcement, hinted by Tesla CEO Elon Musk on Monday via Twitter, follows the company’s first profitable quarter and Consumer Reports rating the Model S a 99 out of a possible 100. Tesla also outsold similarly-priced gas-powered cars created by Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and Audi.

Tesla’s history has not always been as bright as its future looks now. In 2010, Musk said his investments in Tesla had essentially dried out his personal fortune, stating in a court filing that he “ran out of cash.”

Musk also said that “Tesla will do well as long as we make good products…. To say a car company is the best way to get a return on your investment is absurd, though Tesla will do well for its shareholders.”

Apart from achieving profitability, the full repayment of Tesla’s loan was made possible by “a portion of the approximately $1 billion in funds raised in last week’s concurrent offerings of common stock and convertible senior notes.”

Musk, Tesla’s initial primary investor and CEO, thanked the Energy Department, Congress, and the American taxpayer, saying “I hope we did you proud.”

8 Responses to Tesla Motors Pays Back Energy Department Loan 9 Years Early

  1. catman306 says:

    For fun I looked for used Tesla autos. There appear to be six in the entire United States.

    “There weren’t any exact matches for your search.
    We expanded your search criteria to help you:
    6 cars meet your criteria if you expand your search radius to nationwide.

    Or browse results starting with:
    * Make: Tesla (0)
    * Model: Model S (0)”

  2. Randy says:

    Well, we arent talking about Fords here, are we…I’d drive a used Roadster but price is…still cray.

  3. Merrelyn Emery says:

    And this news is on top of the recent good news about solar and wind – somebody’s getting the nessage, ME

  4. Joe Romm says:

    Who would be selling a used Tesla?

  5. BBHY says:

    Check ebay motors, there are plenty of Teslas for sale. A lot of people who had Roadsters are selling them after buying the Model S.

  6. Spec says:

    Tesla is doing a great job of improving the image of electric cars. No one is going to deride a Model S as a ‘Golf cart’. However, the real work needs to get done at lower price levels. And thanks to the CARB ZEV program, there are now a lot of great inexpensive EVs available in California and Oregon. Nissan Leaf, Chevy Spark EV, Fiat 500e, Toyota Rav4, Honda Fit EV, Ford Focus EV, etc. At $17,495 after incentives, the Spark EV is practically a free car when you consider the gasoline savings.

  7. T. Caine says:

    Tesla’s proven a lot of people wrong and made a lot of progress where others have failed. We can only hope they’re going to continue to find success, as their success is probably ours.