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Tesla’s high-end Model 3 won’t come cheap

Published May 21st, 2018 5:11PM EDT
Model 3 Performance Model

In something of a classic Tesla move, Elon Musk over the weekend announced a new Model 3 that features a dual-motor and all-wheel drive alongside a new Model 3 performance model. Now why is this a classic Tesla move, you might be wondering? Well, what other car company on the planet would announce a few new variants of a car when they’re still struggling to ramp up production on the entry-level model? Indeed, Tesla’s ambition in this regard is why some people absolutely love the company and why others believe it’s destined to fail.

As to the newly announced performance model, Musk over the weekend revealed that the forthcoming vehicle will, naturally, include a dual motor and all-wheel drive. Further, it will be able to go from 0-60 MPH in just 3.5 seconds flat while boasting a top speed of 155 MPH. As far as range is concerned, Musk said that the car will be able to go 310 miles on a single charge. Now that all sounds great, but the total price will cost about $78,000 according to Musk.

“Cost is $78k,” Musk said via Twitter. “About same as BMW M3, but 15% quicker & with better handling. Will beat anything in its class on the track.”

Many of course have taken to calling the car overpriced, and others are wondering what in the world happened to the notion of the Model 3 being an affordable EV for the masses. Well, it’s no secret that Tesla is looking to turn a profit and, in that regard, one can see why Tesla would prefer to ship a higher-margin car over the bare bones $35,000 model.

As Musk noted this weekend: “With production, 1st you need achieve target rate & then smooth out flow to achieve target cost. Shipping min cost Model 3 right away wd cause Tesla to lose money & die. Need 3 to 6 months after 5k/wk to ship $35k Tesla & live.”

The positive news, though, is that production does seem to be ramping up considerably. According to CNET, the wait-time for new reservations now falls somewhere between six and 12 months.

The automaker has also updated its delivery timelines for customers placing new reservations. According to an email Tesla sent out, that wait is now estimated to be between six and 12 months, down from 12 to 18 months. Tesla says the shortened timeline can be attributed to an increased production rate.

Deliveries of Tesla’s top of the line Model 3 will reportedly begin in July. Incidentally, you can also pick up an entry-level Model S for about $15,000 cheaper.

Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.

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