Tesla’s first mass-market electric car

Elon Musk achieved a long-held goal for Tesla’s first mass-market electric car this week, announcing a version of its Model 3 priced at $35,000 — or $9,000 less than the previous lowest price for the vehicle. To cut costs as it slashes pricing, the company also revealed that it was moving to a radical online sales model, scrapping most of its stores and doing away with the chance for traditional test drives. Instead, any customer who buys a car will be able to return it within seven days, or after they’ve driven up to 1,000 miles, for a full refund… Driving down the price for the Model 3 has been seen as essential to reaching the level of sales Mr Musk has targeted. However, the prospect of rapid price cuts — and the damage they could inflict on profit margins — has left Wall Street on edge. News of the reduction shaved almost 4 per cent off Tesla’s share price in aftermarket trading… Tesla said it would maintain a “small number” of its stores as “galleries, showcases and Tesla information centres”… The new $35,000 Tesla will have a range of 220 miles, compared with the 260 miles of the previous cheapest version. Tesla started taking orders for the vehicle in the US on Thursday… The company also announced a version with a 240-mile range at a price of $37,000.
Richard Waters