But as Green Car Reports noted early this morning, a production Model S has already been photographed in the wild--complete with personalized California license plate proclaiming it to be "TSLA S1," or the very first Model S off the line.
It belongs to venture capitalist and Tesla board member Steve Jurvetson, who wrote a check for the very first Model S at a Tesla board meeting more than three years ago.
Doing so, he beat out Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Motors and the driver of the first all-electric Tesla Roadster, the car that put the Silicon Valley startup on the automotive map and convinced more than a few electric-car skeptics that battery power could provide jaw-dropping performance.
The 2012 Model S driven by Jurvetson is a Signature Series edition, a fully-loaded model with the largest battery pack (85 kilowatt-hours) and a range of up to 320 miles.
(The EPA hasn't weighed in with its ratings for Model S range, however, so take Tesla's estimates with a grain of salt.)
More importantly, the Performance version of the high-end Model S has a quoted 0-60 mph acceleration time of just 4.4 seconds.
That's quick enough to shame quite a few pricey gasoline-powered luxury sport sedans--none of which offer the optional child-size jump seats for sixth and seventh passengers that the Model S does.
Tesla is planning extensive publicity events around the first Model S deliveries, and it will try to get 5,000 separate drivers behind the wheel of the Model S within 45 days of launch.
For more details on Jurvetson's Model S # 001, including a photo, see the full details in the Green Car Reports story.