Tesla has announced plans to reveal the new Model 3 on March 31st. In a tweet last month, CEO Elon Musk said that Tesla will begin taking reservations for the new car starting on March 31st in Tesla Stores. Reservations will also be accepted online a day later. The price to reserve a new Model 3 is $1,000.
Unlike the Tesla Roadster, Model S, and Model X, the Model 3 will not have a premium package offered during the beginning of production. Also unlike its predecessors, the Model 3 is expected to cost around $35,000 before any tax incentives. You can expect production at Tesla’s Fremont, CA factory to start sometime late next year.
The Model 3 marks Tesla’s first effort to make an affordable luxury electric vehicle. At $35,000 the Model 3 will compete with the Nissan Leaf, the BMW i3 and the VW e-Golf. According to Baird Equity Research, the new addition to the ever-growing Tesla lineup will still generate “significant demand” even with gas sitting at or below two dollars per gallon. Musk thinks that if the new sedan can hit the market with the same success as the Model S, there will be no constraint due to low customer demand.
Musk stated last month that the Model 3 is going to be 20 percent lighter than the Model S. Additionally, Musk said the car will be much less complex, affording the customer greater reliability and cheaper repairs down the road.
A lower price of entry could help Tesla continue to grow in popularity. Especially if Tesla can find a way to make the range of the Model 3 beat out its competitors such as the Nissan Leaf and Chevy Bolt. Current rumors point towards a range upwards of 200 miles.
To see the Tesla Model S take on one of its high-performance gasoline competitors, check out our mashup review of the Model S P85 vs the Audi S8: