Tesla Motors, Inc. (Tesla Motors) will open seven regional sales and service centers in summer 2009, establishing a coast-to-coast network in the US and a retail footprint in Europe. Stores in New York, Seattle and Chicago will open in late June 2009, followed by Miami. The new additions will complement company’s flagship stores in Northern and Southern California, which opened in 2008. The company is also scouting locations in Washington DC and Toronto.

Tesla Motors’ first European store will open in London later in June 2009, followed by Munich and Monaco.

Tesla Motors takes its showroom cues from Apple, Starbucks and other customer-focused retailers. Tesla Motors stores provide a welcoming spot to surf the Web, test drive cars and learn more about the company, the production automaker selling highway-capable EVs in North America or Europe.

“We are rethinking almost every aspect of the automobile – from the powertrain to the customer experience, both online and in our stores,” said Elon Musk, Tesla Motors chief executive officer and product architect.

Store locations and hours are updated online. The showrooms are centrally located to allow quick access to nearby highways and suburbs, giving prospective owners an opportunity to experience Tesla Motors’ performance under a range of driving conditions.

With an EPA-estimated range of 244 miles per charge, it costs roughly $4 to refuel and can be completely recharged in as little as 3.5 hours.

Tesla Motors consume no gasoline, never need routine oil changes and require far less maintenance than internal combustion engine vehicles or complicated hybrids. They also qualify for numerous incentives, which significantly lower their total cost of ownership compared to gas guzzlers.

New Jersey, Arizona and Washington, for instance, waive sales and use taxes on EVs, resulting in an immediate savings of $10,000 or more compared to a conventional car. Combined with a $7,500 US federal tax credit and lower cost of electricity vs. gasoline, the Roadster has a lifetime cost advantage of at least $25,000 over a gas-powered sports car with a similar sticker price.

Recently, Tesla Motors delivered its 500th Roadster in the US. In late June 2009, the company will begin producing the Roadster Sport, an electric supercar that does 0 to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds. European Roadster deliveries begin in 2009 summer.