Today was an exciting day for the electric vehicle industry, especially for Tesla Motors. Today is Tesla’s IPO day, and the company raised more than $266 million once shares of its stock became available to the public. There was a lot of industry hype about this IPO, and this prompted Tesla to announce it would be selling 13.3 million shares, up from the 11.1 million listed in the company's IPO paperwork. The company also bumped its expected price up to $17 per share late Monday, higher than the initial target of $14 to $16.

When the Nasdaq opened today, Tesla Motors’ stock (TSLA) was available for $19 per share. Prior to today, the company had plans to raise $178 million through its IPO, and MNN transportation blogger Jim Motavalli felt the company would have no problem reaching that goal “because Tesla is a very sexy business, with a great image. Who wouldn’t want to tell people at cocktail parties that they’re an investor in Tesla?”

Well now Tesla Motors has more than 266 million new reasons to celebrate. Its IPO outdid even the best expectations. With $266 million in new investments, an inked deal with Toyota, and money from the Recovery Act, Tesla will be able to move full-steam ahead with its plans for the Tesla Model S sedan.

The Tesla Model S sedan is priced significantly lower than the $100k roadster. Early estimates are that the 300-mile range electric vehicle will cost just under $50K after the federal tax credit. The sexy sedan seats seven and is expected to be available in 2012.

I’ve been eyeing the Model S since it was first revealed nearly two years ago, but the company’s inability to get out of the red and into the black has been cause for concern. Thankfully there are investors out there who believe in Tesla’s product and believe in the company’s business model. This belief has brought $266 million worth of new life to Tesla, and 2012 can’t get here fast enough.

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