Tesla to sell millions in environment credits during 2013

Word has it Tesla Motors will get to announce its first profit on Wednesday, May 8, a long-awaited reality for the company. According to the LA Times, the profit will happen due to the subsidization of the company through the sale of environmental credits it receives from California and to others auto makers. Estimates currently have it that credit sales during 2013 could bring in $250 million.

According to the report, Tesla Motors receives up to $35,000 in credits for every Model S electric vehicle it sells, a substantial number on top of the car's sticker price. The credits have been a financial staple of the auto maker, and likewise gives it a boost that is unique to Tesla Motors – no other car manufacturer gets so much in credits. As Chrysler's CEO pointed out last month, for example, its taking a $10k hit on every Fiat it sells in California.

California has been heavily pursuing zero-emissions vehicles, with that reality reinforced last month via the publication of a roadmap by the California Fuel Cell Partnership, in which it detailed the state's plans for rolling out hydrogen stations and the number of fuel-cell vehicles it expects to see in the coming years based on current and estimated growth rates.

Despite accusations that California is playing favorites, the state's Air Resource Board is quoted as saying: "We are in the air pollution business, not the car business. There is some jealousy of Tesla going on here." As far as Tesla Motors goes, the maker saw Model S sales tally in at 2,650 last year, and expects the number of sales to jump drastically this year to 20,000 units. Such a number will bring in substantial environmental credits, which will then sell for an even more substantial amount to other car makers.

[via LA Times]