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Electric car Tesla launches IPO at $17 per share, beating expectations

Electric-car company Tesla Motors launched its IPO today, becoming the first U.S. automaker to go public since Ford did so in 1956.

Tesla is listed on the tech-heavy Nasdaq and priced at $17 per share, raising $226 million in its offering. Tesla trades under symbol TSLA.

The Palo Alto, Calif., automaker sold 13.3 million shares and beat expectations of an opening bid of $11 to $13 per share. The company has never been profitable, having lost $290 million since it was founded in 2003.

The company hopes to use its IPO money to build a more affordable $50,000 sedan, as the company's original two-seater sports car came in at $109,000. The IPO is expected to trigger a $50 million investment from Japanese auto giant Toyota. The Tesla sedan will be built at the New United Motor Manufacturing plant in California, which was the previous site of a joint venture between Toyota and General Motors.

The Tesla already has some celebrity fans, including owners Brad Pitt and San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsome.

By Frank Ahrens  |  June 29, 2010; 9:57 AM ET
Categories:  Wall Street  
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Peace yall... on the day that Tesla Motors launches it's IPO, i chose to release this new Hip Hop song called "Dipin In My Tesla" check it out now, and spread the word!

Posted by: JBRAVE | June 29, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

They won't make it, and the money invested in the IPO will be down the drain!

Investors give you about one or two quarters to ramp up to meet expected revenues, or they are on to seeking better returns!

Can't happen that quick!

Posted by: theaz | June 29, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

This will be a pink sheet stock in less than a year. Happy investing!

Posted by: tuzoner | June 29, 2010 5:45 PM | Report abuse

I didn't hear a single person on CNBC today who thought Tesla would ever make a profit. But, that's okay they did say that the new green funds had to buy it even though it was a loser in order to suck in more naive green investors.

Posted by: jhough1 | June 29, 2010 7:19 PM | Report abuse

OK: I'm green; green to investing and green ecologically speaking; but I want to invest in this vehicle; should I buy 10 shares? 100? (can't afford more than that).
Should I wait a week to watch it perform? Should I just wait 2 years until the car is sold?
Advice, please!

Posted by: RobertHPike | June 30, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

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