Tesla announces a cheaper, midrange version of the Model 3

Kenny Grant
October 20, 2018

Musk has promised a version of the Model 3 with a base price of $35,000, which has yet to be realized. The Model 3 state rebate is $2,500 in California and $5,000 in CT. The tax credit for Tesla cars will drop by half on January 1.

Musk also pointed out that the new mid-range Model 3 costs roughly USA $35,000 after federal and state tax rebates in California.

In another tweet, Musk put the number at more like $35,000 after federal and California tax rebates.

Since the auto was billed as the "affordable Tesla" when it was announced, the announcement was, for many, overdue-especially in light of the company's announcement of a $64,000 "performance" version earlier this year.

The mid-range model is one of three main versions of the Model 3 that the automaker is expected to eventually offer - short, mid and long; Tesla has favored offering the more expensive versions first for financial reasons. Given previous Model 3 editions were selling for as much as $86,000, and that its luxury Model S and X cars go for well over $100,000, it's likely that more budget conscious Tesla fans will be eager to jump on the new opportunity to own a cheaper Model 3. CEO Elon Musk recently noted that focusing on the cheaper auto first would cause Tesla to "die," because it's not profitable to make. But Tesla has struggled to ramp up production on the Model 3 and initially focused on making the higher-end versions. The performance and long-range versions each have all-wheel-drive and dual motors and battery packs that will go some 310 miles on a full charge.

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Musk further explained that the mid-range vehicle is outfitted with a long-range battery that has fewer cells. For example, NY offers a further $2,000 incentive, dropping the price down to $35,500.

Even the new version, though, doesn't fulfil the company's promises.

With today's announcement, Tesla has come through with lower pricing, but $45,000 before incentives is the starting point. Basically, for $10,000 less, the standard battery model will only reduce the range by 60 miles.

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