Tesla's posh all-electric cars are cool, but they're expensive. So when the company announced a financing scheme on Tuesday that could bring ownership cost below $500 a month, we listened. Buy a $72,400 luxury car for less than $500 a month with the option of selling it back at a predetermined price, if you don't like it? Sounds awesome, right? But it's not that simple. That $500 figure — give or take a few dozen bucks — is not what you'll be paying a Tesla dealer. Rather, the new financing program takes into account the money it says you'll save by owning an electric car. To calculate those figures, Tesla got, well, they got creative.
The plan looks simple on Tesla's website. Under the banner "True Cost of Ownership," a new page on the company's website explains how it's struck a deal "with some of the largest and most respected banks in the country" that enables new owners to buy the new Model S electric car but also enjoy the perks of a lease agreement. The crux of that proposition is the option to sell the car back to Tesl, no questions asked, for a preset amount after 36 months. "Not only is Tesla guaranteeing that resale value," the promo reads, "but Tesla CEO Elon Musk is personally standing behind that guarantee to give customers absolute peace of mind about the value of the asset they are purchasing."