Leading the charge: NZ’s first Tesla Model S

The electric garage: Tesla Model S, Segway PT, and a pair of Nissan Leafs.

The electric garage: Tesla Model S, Segway PT, and a pair of Nissan Leafs.

Auckland software entrepreneur Steve West has imported the first Tesla Model S electric sports saloon into New Zealand. In fact, his is the first privately owned Model S in all of Australasia, and it arrived direct from a European showroom – purchased as soon as the right-hand-drive version was released to the UK market.

Steve hosted a “Leading the Charge” launch party at his home last weekend, inviting leaders and influencers in the electric vehicle field. TV3 News covered the story in prime time.

Amongst the ~50 attendees were internet entrepreneur and Segway Polo player Seeby Woodhouse, technology and economics writer Rod Oram (another enthusiast of the Segway PT), and Philip Bendall from Segway New Zealand (who visited the Tesla head office and factory in San Carlos, California in 2008, and attended the Sydney unveiling of two not-for-sale Model S’s in August earlier this year – the first Australian customers hope to receive their Model S’s next month).

A lucky few got to be some of the first people in New Zealand to ride in the luxury, all-electric Model S. Afterwards, a ‘fishbowl discussion’ followed, centred around what can be done to speed the adoption of electric cars in this country.

Other electric cars on display included Steve’s other Tesla – the original Roadster, two Nissan Leafs (or is that Leaves?), and a red MX-5 (known as the Miata in USA) that had been converted to EV. Segway Personal Transporters were also available for attendees to ride.

The electrified nose of an EV-converted Mazda MX-5 (known as a Miata in USA)

The electrified nose of an EV-converted Mazda MX-5 (known as a Miata in USA)

Steve exhibited his pride and joy at MIT in Auckland today, displaying the Tesla alongside the Killacycle and Killajoule before they all head off to Christchurch for Evolocity on Sunday 30th at Mike Pero Motorsport Park.

Steve co-founded Serato, the world’s leading DJ software.

Tesla S launch NZ

 

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