Express & Star

Sandwell MP gives red light to Elon Musk's plan to supply police with Tesla cars

A Sandwell MP has taken aim at billionaire inventor Elon Musk's car company Tesla and urged West Midlands Police to buy British-made cars.

John Spellar does not want Elon Musk to do business with West Midlands Police

Warley MP John Spellar is determined to stop UK police forces buying American electric Tesla cars.

The US-based car manufacturer revealed this week its Model 3 was being tested for suitability for emergency services in England.

The MP told West Midlands Police not to invest in American cars when UK vehicles could do the same job.

He said: "Not only do these cost around £60,000 each but they are definitely not built in the UK.

"I will be alerting our West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Foster to say our police force should have nothing to do with this."

As well as stopping Tesla supplying West Midlands Police with cars, Mr Spellar wants to stop any UK force lining Elon Musk's pockets.

He said: "I will also be drawing this to the attention of Government, Ministers and fellow MPs to stand up for our motor industry."

Its not unknown for Elon Musk to argue with politicians he disagrees with
The Tesla Model 3 Performance which is being tested by police forces

The Labour MP could soon be on the receiving end of one of Mr Musk's notorious rants, which have seen the South African embroiled in a long list of Twitter spats.

Previous targets of the rocket-launching billionaire include hero British diver Vernon Unsworth who Musk called "pedo guy" after he refused to use Musk's electric-powered submarine during a rescue operation of children trapped in caves in Thailand.

Musk, who founded PayPal, has also had arguments with New York rapper Azealia Banks, Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar's brother, Amazon CEO and fellow space explorer Jeff Bezos and several politicians he disagrees with.

Max Toozs-Hobson, emergency services lead at Tesla, boasted the Model 3 could cope with the demands blue lights put on cars.

During real time testing in which the cars Tesla provided were subjected to multiple call outs the modified Model 3 did not need charging for four hours.

He said: “It’s achievable to do over 200 miles of blue light advanced driving with the [Model 3]”.

The Government's promise to ban petrol and diesel cars by 2030 and to satisfy its own carbon neutral targets all emergency service vehicles will eventually be electric.

However, due to the amount of gadgets, radios and equipment in emergency vehicles they will need more electric than normal cars.

A Tesla Model 3 Performance currently costs £59,990, while a BMW 3 Series Saloon costs £33,250.