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USA: Tesla’s upcoming Model X built with women in mind

SAN JOSE, Calif — SAN JOSE, Calif. – Tesla Motors says its upcoming all-electric Model X, scheduled to hit the highways in 2014, combines “the functionality of a minivan with a design as cool as an SUV.”

And while the seven-passenger Model X is gender-neutral – there’s nothing overtly feminine about the car – it was built with families and female drivers in mind: think moms who regularly haul around young children, their friends, groceries and sports equipment.

The Model X is described on Tesla’s website as being an automobile “built around the driver – and six of her friends.” To make sure the design team was on the right track, Tesla last year invited a dozen Palo Alto, Calif.-area women to its headquarters for a free-wheeling, three-hour-long focus group led by Franz von Holzhausen, Tesla’s chief designer. Also, several of the designers who worked on the Model X are women, including Nancy Holman, Susanne Neuhauser and Kimberly Marte.

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