Tesla Motors Denies Fire Charge, Freed from Tax

According to Bloomberg, Tesla Motors, Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) has declared that the over-heating of a Model S charging system was not responsible for the garage fire in Irvine, California on Nov 15. The Model S was being charged via a wall socket in the garage, but the investigating Orange County Fire Authority reported that the car battery did not cause the fire. However, they were unsure if the charging system was responsible.

However, Tesla informed that the cable was damaged on the wall side and not on the vehicle side. Moreover, the car did not catch fire.

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Tesla also examined the data log recording the charging cycles of the car and found no evidence of temperature fluctuations or faults in the battery or charging devices. The automaker said that neither the car nor the battery caused the fire.

Tesla is already under investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for a few fire incidents in Model S cars. However, Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, expects the Model S to be cleared by the NHTSA. He believes that the car is safe and hence, does not expect the investigation to lead to a recall.

California Tax Break

In another news, the California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority announced a $34.7 million tax break to Tesla with the intention of boosting electric vehicle production in the state. The authority exempted the automaker from sales and use taxes on new equipment worth $400–$500 million.

The equipment will expand Tesla’s production capacity by 35,000 vehicles per annum and also increase the manufacture of electric powertrains. This is expected to create almost 112 jobs in California besides helping improve the air quality. Moreover, the rise in employment and car sales should generate enough tax revenues for the state to compensate the $34.7 million tax loss.

Tesla had received a tax exemption on the purchase of $612 million worth of equipment earlier as well. The company used the equipment to retool its Freemont plant and manufacture Model S and Model X cars.

Tesla currently has a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Better-ranked automobile stocks include Honda Motor Co., Ltd. (HMC), Tata Motors Limited (TTM) and Ford Motor Co. (F). All these stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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