This is a bit of a deviation from our normal Pop Culture Beast coverage, but I’ve been waiting for this news to be released since March 2016. Ever since Elon Musk unveiled the affordable all electric car, I’ve been hooked. And Friday night at the “Handover Party”, he didn’t disappoint.
The all new Tesla Model 3 was released, and the first 30 cars were delivered to employees who had put in their orders. The first cars are the Long Range models, which are projected to get 310 miles to a full charge. The Standard version, with a 220 mile range will be released in the fall. The Model 3 has the most sleek, minimalist interior to a car I’ve ever seen. With the exception of the pedals, and a couple buttons on the steering wheel, everything is controlled by a 15″ touchscreen, mounted front and center on the dash.
The base price for the Model 3 is a very reasonable $35K, especially because it’s seated in the same class as the BMW 3-series. The Long Range battery will add $9K to that price, and to purchase the Model 3 with all the bells and whistles that are currently available, it’ll set you back $59.5K. And those bells and whistles include the Long Range battery, the Enhanced Autopilot suite of active-safety systems, adding lane-changing and self-parking, is $5,000, future self-driving capabilities will be offered for $3,000 when ready, a $5,000 Premium Upgrades package adds 12-way heated and power adjustable front seats, a panoramic glass roof, an upgraded audio system, power adjustable steering and heated folding side mirrors, a center console, wood trim and upgraded materials, and two rear USB ports, $1,500 for the wheel upgrade from 18″ standard to 19″ sport, and an additional $1,000 for a paint job in any color that isn’t black. Charging times and mileage amounts differ between the two batteries, but that’s to be expected with different capacities.
All in all, the Model 3 looks fantastic. Making an affordable electric car is a brilliant move on Musk and Tesla’s part. Along with Musk’s plans for affordable solar panels and batteries for powering homes. His commitment to green energy is commendable, as is his dedication to making SpaceX happen. I’m really looking forward to seeing how the public likes their Model 3’s, and how they continue to get tweaked to please even more people.
Here is video from the “Handover Party”, showing off some of the features and specs for the Model 3.