Tesla Pays Off US Loan 9 Years Early
CEO to taxpayers: 'I hope we did you proud'
By Matt Cantor, Newser User | Suggested by T.A.R.D.I.S
Posted May 23, 2013 2:11 AM CDT
Updated May 23, 2013 6:03 AM CDT
In this May 2, 2013 photo, a Tesla car is shown outside of Tesla motors in Fremont, Calif.   (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

(Newser) – Tesla has come a long way since Mitt Romney labeled it a "loser" in the presidential debates. The company has paid off its $465 million 2010 loan from the Department of Energy—plus interest—nine years before it was due, Businessweek reports. With yesterday's payment for $451.8 million, "Tesla will be the only American car company to have fully repaid the government," the company says. Boss Elon Musk thanked the government and "particularly the American taxpayer from whom these funds originate ... I hope we did you proud."

Things have been going well lately for Tesla: That payment comes from the nearly $1 billion it raised last week, Reuters notes. The company reported its first quarterly profit weeks ago. Meanwhile, its share price has climbed from $25.52 to $87.24 over the course of a year, Businessweek points out. The government loan helped it create its Model S electric car; the vehicle just got Consumer Reports' highest score ever. Officials call the repayment "the latest indication that the Energy Department's portfolio of more than 30 loans is delivering big results for the American economy while costing far less than anticipated."

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Showing 3 of 124 comments
HMD-SMD-ITY
May 27, 2013 11:37 PM CDT
I like the idea of the air car. You currently have to tow around an air tank on a trailer to make it work but its very promising.
jsehgal
May 23, 2013 11:01 PM CDT
RE: "Boss Elon Musk thanked the government and "particularly the American taxpayer from whom these funds originate ... I hope we did you proud." YES YOU DID!
O_K
May 23, 2013 2:57 PM CDT
Lithium is rare, precious, and completely recyclable. How about an eco-friendly start-up to do that in the U.S. rather than burying another resource in landfills?