Tesla Model Y Headed for March 14th Unveiling
Hoping to start this week in better form than last week, Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter Sunday to generate buzz ahead of the Model Y’s debut. The upcoming crossover, based on the Model 3 sedan, will see the light of day on March 14th at the company’s L.A. design studio, Musk said.
As for when customers can expect to see one, that’s a matter for the bookies.
Detailed technical specs and pricing should be forthcoming on March 14th, though Musk did say, “Model Y, being an SUV, is about 10% bigger than Model 3, so will cost about 10% more & have slightly less range for same battery.”
Should one assume those stats are based on the standard range, $35,000 Model 3 released last week? That stripped-down sedan goes 220 miles between charges. If this is the true starting point, the base Model Y’s range should just barely top the 200-mile mark while retailing for a tick under 40 grand after destination.
However, as we saw with the Model 3, it’s not a sure thing that the entry-level Model Y will be made available to customers from the outset. Model 3 Standard Range customers were left twiddling their thumbs for two years as buyers snapped up the pricier versions needed to fund Tesla’s operation.
In follow-up tweets, Musk said the Model Y won’t opt for gimmicky (and failure-prone) falcon wing doors like those seen on the Model X SUV. It would seem this crossover is garage safe.
While the Model Y is slowly becoming less of a ghost, production timing — and location — remains something of a question mark. Last year saw several best guesses, with Musk going from saying a November 2019 start date was “possible” to April 2020, then to August of that year. In the automaker’s fourth-quarter 2018 earnings report, Tesla wrote, “Additionally, this year we will start tooling for Model Y to achieve volume production by the end of 2020, most likely at Gigafactory 1.”
Gigafactory 1 is Tesla’s Nevada battery production site. Another such site, meant for both batteries and vehicles, is under construction in Shanghai.
Assuming the earnings report prediction holds, customers should expect their Model Ys starting in early 2021. Of course, a lot could change over the course of this year.
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