Tuesday, 26 March, 2019

Tesla unveils its Model Y SUV

Meet The Newly Launched Tesla Model Y Which Completes The S3XY Lineup Tesla Reveals Model Y ‘Baby SUV’ Tonight: How To Watch Live
Orlando Vargas | 15 March, 2019, 07:27

And for $51,000 ($9,000 less than the Performance model), you can opt for the Dual Motor AWD option that does 450 kilometers (280 miles) with a top speed of 217 kmph (135 mph). The vehicles can be configured to include 7 seats for an additional $3,000.

The Y will be what the Tesla Model 3 was to the Tesla Model S: a more affordable, accessible version of a luxury vehicle.

Small SUVs are the fastest-growing segment in both the United States and China, the world's largest auto market, where Tesla is building a factory, making the Model Y well positioned to tap demand.

One question has been, would Tesla introduce a base version Model Y to match its recently released $US35,000 Model 3 ($A49,800 at today's rates) from the get go, rather than starting the premium Long Range and Performance versions as has been its modus operandi for the Model 3.

Tesla Model Y
Tesla Model Y

Chief Executive Elon Musk said the compact SUV, built on the same platform as the Model 3, would first debut in a long-range version with a range of 300 miles (482 km) priced at $47,000.

That plan - later scrapped - ushered in an ongoing period of turmoil at the company, from Musk's public battles with regulators, a flurry of securities lawsuits, cost cutting and layoffs across the company. Musk said the new baby SUV will be 10 percent larger than the Model 3 four-door sedan. "This is definitely going to be the year of the solar roof and power wall", Musk said, explaining that Model 3 production challenges prevented the company from spending more resources on solar and battery projects. "There was a time when electric cars seemed very stupid and it wasn't that long ago", Musk told the audience.

Speaking of costs, Tesla says that the Model Y will be roughly 10 percent more expensive than a comparable Model 3. Test rides of the Model Y are also in store. Suppliers were originally told that production would start on the vehicle in November 2019, sources told Reuters past year.

The Model Y will slowly begin production early 2019 with it ramping up in late 2020. Tesla said it hopes to build 2,000 Model Ys per week by September 2020.

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