Australian customers for the “mass market” Tesla Model 3 electric vehicle have had to wait a long time for the car they have coveted – and paid a deposit for – since its unveiling more than two years ago. But it might be worth the wait.
News out of the US is that Tesla, Elon Musk’s pioneering electric car company, is ready to start producing the “low cost” version of the Model 3, rather than the long range and performance models it has been delivering to date.
That means, for Australian customers, that by the time Tesla gets round to building right-hand drive versions of the car in mid 2019, for deliveries to Australia and the UK, then customers will have a choice between the base $US35,000 – the so-called category killer for petrol cars, and more expensive models.
To date, Australians have only had access to the Model S and X – which with price points starting at $A136,910 and $A146,615 respectively, attract a luxury car tax and fall well out of the range of most Aussie drivers.
But the base model of the Model 3 will fall well below the luxury car threshold, as Alex Shooman pointed out when he made some educated estimates in this piece last year.
In the US, there are still only 3 models currently available – all with a long 500km range battery and premium interior, starting at $US49,000 for the rear wheel drive, $US55,000 for the dual motor all-wheel drive and $US64,000 for the performance version of the all-wheel drive.