Ford Paid $212,000 For Tesla Model X #64

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Originally published on EV Obsession.

It’s a somewhat common industry practice for automakers to purchase the offerings of rival automakers in order to tear them down, to try to get an idea of things that can be stolen, etc. While it probably comes as no surprise that industry giants have been purchasing some of Tesla’s vehicles, the amount of money that some of them are willing to pay might be.

Ford apparently paid $199,950 for a Founders Series Model X, before taxes — ~$55,000 more than the sticker price for the version in question — according to Bloomberg. To be more specific here, the company seems to have actually bought the 64th Model X produced and delivered — a white P90D Founders Series edition equipped with the Ludicrous Mode upgrade.

5 Hot Tesla Model X Videos
Not this one… but similar. (Screenshot of video by Marcus Adolfsson.)

That’s quite a premium to pay for just a year or so headstart over the other auto manufacturers — after all, Tesla now seems likely to fulfill its reservation backlog well before the end of 2016, going by recent reports on the matter.

Bloomberg provides more details:

Spied recently in the Detroit area with Michigan manufacturers’ plates, it originally belonged to a California coin dealer who bought it as part of Tesla’s customer-referral promotion.

…One Ford executive spotted driving the company’s white Model X was David Woodhouse, chief designer of the automaker’s Lincoln luxury line, according to a person who saw him. Woodhouse oversaw the creation of the Lincoln Navigator concept SUV that debuted at the New York Auto Show last month. Like the Model X, the Navigator concept featured gull-wing doors, though Ford said that feature won’t be on the production version of the SUV. Ford declined to confirm who is driving the car.

…According to vehicle registration documents obtained by Bloomberg, the window-sticker price on the all-wheel-drive Model X P90D that Ford purchased is $144,950, including the $10,000 Ludicrous Speed Upgrade that boasts a 0-to-60 miles per hour time of 3.2 seconds.

(Note that the Model X features falcon-wing doors, not gull-wing doors. This is an important distinction for practicality and convenience.)

The Model X in question seems to have been sold to Corporate Auto of Auburn Hills, Michigan, by a man named Wayne Skiles — who obtained the Founders Series offering through Tesla’s referral program.

Skiles, who owns the Carousel Coin & Jewelry Exchange in San Bernardino, California, commented on the matter in an interview with Bloomberg: “I sold 11 Model Ss. So I got a Founders Model X and immediately flipped it for a profit. The car never came to California. I flew to Chicago, took physical delivery of the Model X, and immediately drove it to a dealer in Chicago and sold it.”

Ford released a public statement on the matter: “It is a common industry practice among many automakers to buy production vehicles for testing as soon as they are released. Sometimes, this means automakers pay more than sticker price to acquire them as quickly as possible.”

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James Ayre

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.

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14 thoughts on “Ford Paid $212,000 For Tesla Model X #64

  • I’m not surprised that Ford paid a premium to get unfettered access to the model X. I would be shocked if all the major players were not doing similar purchases if they were not smart enough to secure a model directly.

    • Another Model X has been spotted end of January with Ingolstadt plates.
      Audi was fast too.

  • Give Ford credit for recognizing a leader when they see one. Instead of bad mouthing the competition and continuing to make losing cars against the trend.

      • So when did they buy the Model X and why? It sounds like Ford can’t find anyone to manufacture batteries at a low enough cost for them to make a long-range car affordable, so they will make the battery pack small to keep the price down. Too bad the workers in Mexico can’t make batteries or these cars would be really cheap.

      • Good one. I take it all back. I spoke too soon. Ford makes lousy cars like the Exploder SUV. 🙂 (sarc)
        Sounds like one Ford employee has a serious denial problem. LOL.

      • “No plans to join the range race” – that’s just weird, unless there’s more that they’re keeping secret. The whole mentality of “75 miles meets the need most of the time” is so 2010. It’s more than “anxiety” – short ranges are a hassle and a waste of time. Everyone is planning on moving to 200 miles and even that will be a stepping stone to 300.

        And of course they ponied up (pardon the pun) for a model X. They would have been idiots in their business to not do this asap. So far thier response has been to put gullwings on a Navigator, the bling with the 1950s drive train. At least the tech vintage aligns with the 1950s Mercedes SL gullwing!! 🙂

    • Ford is a large company that worships shareholders. While I like some Ford products, they will bash Tesla while copying it in every way, if need be. Profit > hypocrisy.

        • Very interesting PowerWall article. Thanks for the link.

          • GTM is rife with Tesla bashers.

  • Not sure why they would need to buy the car since the technical specs are already open source, but I hope they actually DO something with the knowledge the get from taking the car apart to see how it works.

  • Ford’s logo has shifted from that familiar blue to envious green.

Comments are closed.