The day has finally arrived, and so has Tesla’s Model 3. This is a first of its kind, $35,000 electric car, which is called nothing less than a game changer. So far, only one model was made. It was finished on Friday, it has its own serial number, and it will be owned by Tesla’s co-founder and CEO Elon Musk himself.
Tesla already has almost half a billion when it comes to deposits for this model. It is the biggest threat to largest carmakers like Mercedes or BMW, or at least it will be, by the end of the year. All it has to do is prove that it can make, deliver, as well as service large numbers of this model, and not sacrifice the quality of a car in the process.
But, the ice has been broken, and the original Model 3 is nowhere.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that millions of cars will start driving down from an assembly line just yet. The production is expected to start slow, and the company will only release 30 models by the end of this month.
After that, in August, around 100 vehicles are expected to follow. The situation will accelerate from there, and September is expected to bring 1,500 models. All in all, there will be over 20,000 of them by the end of the year, according to Musk. This is a large and aggressive increase, but the company seems capable of pulling if off.
If this continues, Tesla will make more electric cars during the course of the next year than all other carmakers in the world did in 2016.
By company’s tradition, the first new car will officially belong to the first person that paid its full price. When it comes to Model 3, its first proud owner was board member Ira Ehrenpreis. However, the car quickly became Musk’s ownership, as a present for his 46th birthday.
As for the key handouts, they will start in California, and then move east. The first ones in the focus will be employees of both Tesla and SpaceX, which are both Musk’s companies. Newly placed orders will only arrive in the middle of next year when massive production truly starts.
The company will take it slowly in order to test everything and discover potential flaws if they somehow managed to sneak past previous tests. And, as stated, the first models will mostly go to the company workers.
As for the models themselves, Musk has been stripping down features in the last several months. Still, that shouldn’t change the car too much from the prototype revealed in March 2016. What is known for now is that there will be only one display, and the additional ones have been removed.
It will have new Aero wheels, for which the company was granted a patent. This is also one of two designs that they used for their tests.
First drive of a release candidate version of Model 3 pic.twitter.com/zcs6j1YRa4
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 24, 2017
When it comes to the Autopilot, and the hardware itself, the company has put a lot of effort into it. It was all done in an effort to make it capable of driving by itself across the country in 2017. As far as it is known, this is still a possibility, and one of the company’s goals.
The software still hasn’t come out, however, even though Tesla has been charging around $3.000 for it in the past months. It is unknown when it will be finished, although some predictions say that it may even come out by the end of July.
A full list of features has yet to come out, and those will all be known by July 28. However, there are still some things that are known right now, and those include:
- Strong acceleration, from zero to 60 in 5.6 seconds.
- A single charge will allow you to drive around 215 miles, and that is without an upgrade to a bigger battery.
- The roof is an almost continuous sheet of glass, and it has a layer that will protect from UV rays, as well as heat.
- Every Model 3 will have hardware that supports the Autopilot, even though it still hasn’t been released. They will also be capable of Supercharging
- It will have two trunks with combined storage space of 14 cubic feet
- The body will be made of cheaper steel and lightweight aluminum
- The touchscreen control panel will be smaller, around 15 inches. It will also be flipped on its side, and it will handle speed, navigation, and anything in between
- Five adults will be able to enjoy it comfortably at once
- An upgrade for dualmotor allwheel drive is possible
- The number of highspeed charging stations is expected to rise to 10,000 by the end of the year.