In the build-up to the Model 3 launch, Elon Musk made it abundantly clear that the number of configuration options at launch would be extremely limited. “You just need to decide what color you want and what size wheels, at least for the initial production,” Musk said during an interview last month. Earlier in the year, Musk explained that the goal is to minimize “configuration complexity” in order to streamline production and help Tesla meet staggering demand for its $35,000 car. To this point, Musk over the weekend confirmed that there are now more than 500,000 outstanding Model 3 reservations.
As it stands now, a look at Tesla’s website reveals that the current incarnation of the Model 3 is available in less than 100 different configurations. In stark contrast, the company’s flagship Model S boasts more than 1,500 different configurations. Still, it’s not as if Tesla is planning to rest on its laurels and keep the Model 3 as-is for months on end. On the contrary, once Tesla gets a firm grasp on initial Model 3 production, the company will begin manufacturing a performance version of the Model 3 for consumers keen on experiencing acceleration similar to what the Model S provides.
Word of a souped up Model 3 was confirmed over the weekend by Musk himself who said that a performance version might see the light of day by mid-2018. Of course, given Tesla’s track record for delays, it wouldn’t surprise us in the least if this timeline ends up being pushed back.
Probably middle of next year. Focus now is on getting out of Model 3 production hell. More versions = deeper in hell.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 30, 2017
As for the “deeper in hell” phrase uttered by Musk, it’s a reference to remarks the Tesla CEO made during the company’s special event this past Friday. When discussing Tesla’s upcoming production schedule in front of a group of Tesla engineers and other company employees, Musk said: “We’re going to be in production hell. It’s going to be where we are for at least six months, maybe longer. But you guys know this. You’re veterans. You’ve been through this.”