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Tesla Model S attracting young, affluent buyers

If you're a private chauffeur in Los Angeles, you may be aware of the latest and most unique addition to the luxury vehicle market. Only in its first model year, the Tesla Model S — a fully electric vehicle — has seen strong sales with a demographic that does not tend to purchase luxury vehicles: Young people. CNBC and Edmunds.com recently analyzed the registration information for Tesla Model S vehicles purchased in the last year and found that compared to other luxury sedans, Tesla buyers are, on average, younger and wealthier than those purchasing models in the same price range.

CNBC reports that Tesla CEO, Elon Musk, had always planned for the Model S to compete with luxury sedans like the BMW 5 series, the Mercedes E- and S-Class and Porsche Panamera. 

"The first Model S vehicles built were the highest priced with the greatest battery life and range," according to the source. "Tesla galleries were established in upscale retail centers near some of the most affluent communities in the United States. When the company established its lease residual value guarantee, the benchmark was set above competing luxury brands."

Although the Model S is most commonly compared to the Chevy Volt and the Nissan Leaf — the two best-selling electric vehicles in the country — it's $70,000 base price attracts a completely different type of buyer. 

There are currently 13,000 Model S vehicles on the road, and that number is only expected to rise, especially after the announcement that the vehicle recently received the government's highest crash safety rating.

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