Tesla gets $300 million lease credit line from Deutsche Bank

A Model X car of U.S. manufacturer Tesla is shown in Zurich, Switzerland August 17, 2016 REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Tesla Motors Inc TSLA.O said on Wednesday it had entered into an agreement with Deutsche Bank whereby the electric car maker can borrow up to $300 million for its vehicle leasing program, part of a broader effort to bolster the company's finances.

In a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Tesla said the new liquidity meant its own cash requirements for its direct leasing program would be “significantly reduced.”

It would thus need to raise correspondingly fewer funds from the public market, Tesla said, as it gears up for its much-anticipated Model 3 mass-market vehicle.

The amount outstanding from the loan and security agreement is due on Sept 20, 2018.

Tesla, which burned through over $600 million of cash in the first half of the year, faces a cash crunch as it ramps up manufacturing capacity for the Model 3 next year and completes construction of its massive “Gigafactory” battery factory in Nevada.

Moreover, Tesla's planned $2.6 billion acquisition of SolarCity SCTY.O, which itself has pressing cash needs, will add to its liquidity issues. Combined, the two companies' debt totaled $5.43 billion with a combined cash burn of $830 million last year.

In August, the company said it had $3.25 billion in principal sources of liquidity as of June 30, 2016, but in July it repaid $678 million on a revolving credit line and planned to redeem $411 million of 2018 convertible notes, warning it could spend more on the securities.

The company also warned that the value of its secured assets had limited its ability to borrow under its asset-based revolving credit agreement with a syndicate of banks. [nL4N1AM2K2]