SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Tesla Inc. unveiled its Model Y electric sports utility vehicle on Thursday evening in California, with the promise of a long-awaited crossover that will compete with the European car manufacturers to roll out their own electric rivals.
Tesla Inc Model Y electric sports utility vehicle is pictured in this undated hand-out photo released on March 14, 2019. Tesla Motors/handout via Reuters
Chief Executive Elon Musk said the compact SUV, built on the same platform as the Model 3, the first debut in a long-range version with a range of 300 miles (482 km) is priced at $47,000.
A standard version, to be available sometime in 2021, will cost $39,000, with a 230-mile range. The vehicles can be configured to 7 seats for an extra $ 3,000.
After the event, Tesla’s website has a page to “design and order” the more expensive, long range version of the vehicle with a rear wheel drive next year. The ordering of the car should be a $2,500 deposit.
Musk has the vehicle on a small, 40-minute event at Tesla’s design studio in Hawthorne, outside Los Angeles, which was streamed live online. (www.tesla.com/modely).
Every Tesla vehicle, the Roadster and the latest Semi, were driven on stage for the blue Model Y appeared.
The small Suvs are the fastest growing segment in the United States and China, the world’s largest car market, where Tesla is building the factory, enabling the Model to Y is well-positioned to take on the question.
Tesla has enjoyed little competition so far for the sedans, but the competition for electric Suv’s is heating up as Tesla is trying to master a new series of the economy of the luxury line that made his reputation.
On Thursday, ratings company Fitch, warned that, despite Tesla’s early lead, “established car manufacturers have the possibility to catch up … thanks to their capacity to invest and their robust record in product management.”
LOWER COSTS, LESS RISK
Tesla’s targeted volume production date of the end of 2020 for the Model of Y would him behind the electric SUV range from Volkswagen AG and Audi, Daimler AG’s Mercedes-Benz and BMW.
“Twelve months from now we will be about 1 million vehicles,” Musk said at the event, without specifying the distribution of the models.
Shares of Tesla are down 24 percent compared to August to a high of $379.57, when Musk tweeted that he Tesla private.
That plan – later scrapped – ushered in a period of turmoil in the company, by Musk’s public battles with regulators, a flurry of securities lawsuits, cost savings and redundancies.
Tesla, two weeks ago, said it would close most of the stores and use the savings to cut the price of most cars with 6 percent. But last week, Tesla reversed course and said it would let in a lot of stores open and increased the prices back by about 3 percent.
Musk has promised an easier production ramp of the Model Y as the shares about three-quarters of the parts with the Model 3 and would need only half of the capital expenditures of the sedan.
Slideshow (3 Images)
The risk is “quite low” Musk told analysts in January. Tesla would be “very likely” the construction of the Model Y on Tesla’s battery factory in Nevada, ” he said at the time. Musk gave no new details about where the Model Y would be produced, on the Thursday of the event.
Still, the Model is Y, just like all of Tesla’s models, already has a pre-production delays. Suppliers were originally told production would start in November 2019, sources told Reuters last year.
In October, Musk said: “significant progress” was made on the Model of Y, and that he is in agreement with the prototype for the production in 2020. In January, he said Tesla had ordered, the tool required to build the car.
Reporting by Alexandria Sage; Editing by Peter Henderson, Greg Mitchell and Lisa Shumaker; Editing by with the ipad has Himani