Tesla Long Promised Model 3 is Finally Available

Tesla Long Promised Model 3 is Finally Available

Electric vehicle company Tesla says that the base version of the Model 3 electric sedan priced at $US35,000 is finally available in the market. The latest Tesla release comes with a redesigned interior and shorter battery life 220 miles a charge compared with the 264 miles a charge that the midrange model has. Delivery of the vehicles will take about two to four weeks, the website says. The announcement indicates in typical Twitter fashion by CEO and founder Elon Musk finally delivers on the promise made nearly three years ago that Tesla would be able to deliver its first “mass market” model. It is something Tesla’s legion of critics has said could never be done.

It offers a top speed of 130 mph and can go from 0 to 60 mph in 5.6 seconds. Black is the only no-cost exterior colour for the cheapest model. Tesla's budget version of the Model 3 includes manual seat and steering adjustment, cloth seats and basic audio. So far, only higher priced versions were available, although the price had gradually reduced from $US49,000 to $US42,000. Consumers, at least those in America, now have five versions of the Model 3 to choose from: Tesla has not only added a “Standard Range” and a “Standard Range Plus”.Tesla has promised that all ranges available in the US will be made available in new right-hand drive markets like the UK and Australia.

Tesla also said it was shifting all of its sales online. The move helps enable the company to lower all vehicle prices by about 6 per cent on average, Tesla said in a blog post. This is also good news for prospective Australian customers, who should be able to start taking deliveries of the Model 3 mid-year. Buyers will have a seven-day or 1,000-mile trial period within which they can bring back the vehicle for a full refund, Tesla said. This is an extension of the automaker's prior three-day trial period. The Standard Range is available for $US35,000 ($A49,330 converted) before subsidies, has 220 miles (354km) of range, a top speed of 130mph (209km.hr) and acceleration from 0-60mph (96.5km) in 5.6 seconds.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has long billed the Model 3 as a mass-market compact sedan, aiming to release a version of the vehicle that costs $35,000, which could be the sweet spot seeing as though its fast and expensive $69,500-and-up Model S and X electric sedans are out of reach for most consumers. "Quite literally, you could buy a Tesla, drive several hundred miles for a weekend road trip with friends and then return it for free." “The whole point of Tesla was to build a great affordable electric car,” Musk said at a gathering of employees and a few dozen media for the rollout of the first Model 3 cars in 2017.

Interior specs for the Standard Range Model 3 are:

  • Black interior only
  • Cloth seats and base trim
  • Standard maps and navigation
  • Music and media over Bluetooth®
  • Tinted glass roof with ultraviolet and infrared protection
  • Auto-dimming, power folding, heated side mirrors
  • Basic audio
  • Custom driver profiles
  • Manual seat and steering adjustment
  • Center console with storage and 4 USB ports

The Standard Range Plus is available for $US37,000 ($A52,150 converted) before subsidies, has 240 miles (386km) of range, a top speed of 140mph (225km.hr) and acceleration from 0-60mph (96.5km) in 5.3 seconds.

Interior specs for the Standard Range Plus Model 3 are:

  • Black or white interior (white is $US1,000 ($A1,409 converted) extra)
  • 12-way power adjustable heated front seats
  • Upgraded audio – immersive sound
  • Standard maps & navigation
  • LED fog lamps
  • Tinted glass roof with ultraviolet and infrared protection
  • Premium seat material and trim
  • Music and media over Bluetooth®
  • Custom driver profiles
  • Auto-dimming, power folding, heated side mirrors
  • Center console with storage, 4 USB ports and docking for 2 smartphones

Pearl White Multi-Coat is available for an extra $US2,000 ($A2,818) and red Multi-Coat for an extra $US2,500 ($A,3,523 converted). The standard paint colour for both is Solid Black, while Midnight Silver Metallic and Deep Blue Metallic are available for an additional  $US1,500 ($A2,114 converted). Both are available with 18″ aero wheels or 19″ sports wheels for an additional $US1,500 ($A2,114 converted). Musk, who's known for dropping subtle hints about the American automotive company on social media, made changes to his Twitter bio on Wednesday. His Twitter name was changed to "Elon Tusk" and he added an elephant emoji.

Actually ordering them however may prove a little difficult; with the whole world clearly overjoyed that CEO Elon Musk finally fulfilled his promise of the base Model 3, the whole site is going into meltdown. Meanwhile, in Australia, it is a very different kettle of fish. As antipodeans await the arrival of even the Long Range and Performance models that are expected to cost in excess of $A70,000, it would appear that for the time being at least, the Australian version of the site is inaccessible due to server overload. Tesla stock (TSLA) was down 3.6 per cent in after-hours. He also had changed his photo to a picture of Mars with the word "Revive" on it.

His user name has since returned to "Elon Musk" and now features an image of a black Model 3 with Aero wheels. With the Model 3 Long Range and Performance now available in China and Europe, and the UK configurator due within months, Australia can but sit patiently and wait, as usual, for the world to come to it.
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