While the cheaper version of the auto is significantly lower than the $54,000 base price for the all-wheel-drive version that Tesla has been selling, some bears are honing in on various drawbacks of the model, as well as citing a great level of uncertainty that still surrounds Tesla's first mass-market vehicle, promised at a baseline price of $35,000.
"Costs $35k after federal & state tax rebates in California, but true cost of ownership is closer to $31k after gas savings", tweeted Musk.
The mid-range Model 3s will be rear-wheel drive only, prompting some to wonder if the company was using software to limit battery capacity on existing RWD inventory in order to get it out of the door.
Tesla said it has used the same battery pack as the long-range version with fewer cells for the mid-range version. This is not the long-awaited $35,000 version, however; the mid-range Model 3 starts at $45,000.
Tesla, meanwhile, also has eliminated the option for buyers to pay an extra $3,000 for a "full self-driving" feature in their cars that isn't yet ready, but which has been available for order for the past two years.
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Company CEO Elon Musk said the option "was causing too much confusion", and on Tuesday revealed that a required upgrade to a Tesla-designed computer chip for the system is still about six months away.
However, there's just one catch, the vehicle isn't going to cost exactly $35,000 for customers, it will cost $45,000.
The sticker price for the vehicle is $45,000, according to the company's website, though the electric automaker alleges that when incentives and gas savings are factored in the estimated cost is actually $31,200.
The cheaper "standard-range" Model 3 is still absent from the new, simplified ordering page, and the company has made no secret of the fact that it can not afford to lose money selling the cheaper cars, no matter the demand. The lower price was achieved by launching a Model 3 variant with a smaller battery.
The midrange Model 3 should be welcome news for those who can't afford to shell out upward of $60,000 for an electric vehicle. The total cost for the technology was $9,000 at the time of purchase, or $10,000 if you made a decision to upgrade after buying the vehicle.