autoevolution
Car video reviews:
 

If You Thought the Tesla Model 3 Was Affordable, Wait 'Till You Hear What's Next

You may or may not like the guy (actually, it's probably a bit of both), but you have to admit that Elon Musk's plan to grow Tesla into a world-famous brand was pretty clever.
Tesla Model 3 1 photo
Back before even the Roadster came out, he analyzed what it was that kept people from embracing the idea of an electric vehicle, and realized there were two things: one was the problem with the range anxiety, while the other was the lack of performances that was associated with EVs. If you know what the problem is, you're halfway through solving it, they say. They say a lot of stupid things.

To counter the first aspect, Tesla built the Superchargers network allowing its cars to go cross-country without ever running out of power. The second issue, however, needed a more tactical approach, so the first vehicle released by Tesla was a low-volume electric sports car that proved you can have fun while sitting on top of a battery pack too.

With that out of the way, it was time to prove an EV could be a family's first choice car as well, so in came the Model S sedan with its seating for five plus two, extended luggage space and... ridiculous performances. The range wasn't bad either, surpassing by far any other electric vehicle out there. Then the market went crazy for SUVs, so Tesla delivered the Model X. The brand's awareness grew, so more and more people wanted to become Tesla customers, but they couldn't afford the prices.

The Model 3 is destined to be the company's first foray out of the luxury zone, even though it won't go too far: the future sedan may cost just $35,000, but that's only for a base model, and it's still more than most people could ever dream of spending on a car. So even though the Model 3 is still at least one year and a half away, Musk is already talking about the next phase. The fourth generation of Tesla vehicles will continue the trend and be even smaller, even cheaper. Talking to the Norwegian Minister of Transport and Communication, Musk said, “It [the Model 3 platform] is designed so that roughly half of people can afford the car and then with the fourth generation – smaller cars and whatnot – we will ultimately be in a position where everyone can afford the car.

While he may have a wrong impression of what “everyone” actually means (we doubt a sanitation worker from India is ever going to own a Tesla), we get the idea: we should expect a city-car-sized Tesla that will probably sell for anything around the $20,000 mark, maybe even less. It won't have the same impressive range and perhaps some of the more advanced features, but it'll be an affordable EV with the Tesla name attached to it. So the registrations record the Model 3 now holds is probably going to be beaten.

 
 
 
 
 

Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories