Tesla Model 3: The First Mass-Produced Electric Car
On March 31, Elon Musk unveiled the Tesla Motors Inc’s (NASDAQ:TSLA) first attempt at a mass-produced car, the “Model 3.” Although it was well known that it we wouldn’t see a Tesla Model 3 on the road until late 2017, the event still drew a massive amount of media attention.
Until now, Tesla has been known as a niche market company. It produced luxury sports cars (the “Roadster”), luxury sedans (the “Model S”), and SUVs (the “Model X”). However, even the cheapest of those vehicles still has a hefty price tag, which is why the company built the Tesla Model 3. The idea is to widen the company’s customer base by offering a luxury sedan at an affordable price.
Since not a lot is known about the Tesla Model 3, we aggregated some of the most important tidbits right here. Here are five facts you should know:
The Model 3 Will Cost $35,000
While the Tesla Model 3 is still a long way from cheap, it is by far the least expensive car Tesla has ever produced. The company is hoping to sell a basic-edition Tesla Model 3 for $35,000, excluding additional subsidies. That price is possible only because Tesla is aiming to reach an annual output of 500,000 cars by 2018. (Source: “Tesla Model 3 announced: release set for 2017, price starts at $35,000,” The Verge, March 31, 2016.)
2. You Can Drive the Model 3 215 Miles on a Single Charge
Apparently the Tesla Model 3 has a range of 215 miles, but I wouldn’t suggest testing that theory. It’s a preliminary boast by Elon Musk and it is likely the best-case scenario.
3. There Will Be 7,200 Superchargers
Thanks to the rapid expansion of Tesla’s charging network, Tesla Model 3 drivers will be able to drive much farther than they are able to today. The number of “Supercharger” stations is expected to double to 7,200. However, there is also the possibility that charging will cost extra for anyone driving a Tesla Model 3, which is a departure from the company’s previous strategy. Model S and Model X drivers have had free access to Superchargers.
4. It Was the Biggest Product Launch of All Time
In the week after its March 31 launch, 400,000 people coughed up the $1,000 reservation fee for a Tesla Model 3. Valued at $17.0 billion, it was officially the largest one-week product launch ever.
5. Model 3 Could Be a Big Win for Tesla Stock
The Tesla Model 3 is crucial in Elon Musk’s master plan. He has pitched it as Tesla’s path to profits in the hopes it will be able to drive the company to economies of scale. That just means the firm’s cost per unit would drop as it produces a greater number of cars. Delivering the Tesla Model 3 on time would go a long way to assuring markets that Tesla’s master plan is working. (Source: “Elon Musk’s ‘Master Plan’ Relies Heavily on the Success of Tesla’s Model 3,” Recode, March 31, 2016.)