Elon Musk has just tweeted pictures of the first production unit of the Tesla Model 3 which rolled out from its Fremont, USA, factory. It’s a landmark because the US$35,000 long-range electric car is first from Tesla aimed at the mainstream market – the Tesla Model X and Model S are priced three times higher.
The Tesla Model 3, therefore, could determine the viability of the company as an auto maker.
“If Tesla can satisfy the Model 3’s pent-up demand with a dependable and profitable vehicle it will finally justify a stock value that has it rivaling GM in capital value. If it can’t, Tesla will confirm many critic’s suspicions that it’s never had a truly sustainable business model,” Karl Brauer of Kelley Blue Book told The Verge. Tesla shares bounced back partially on Friday after tumbling earlier in the week.
It’s also a landmark in the move towards electrification of automobiles with new tech. Analysts predict that more than half of all vehicles sold in 2040 will be electric. Tesla has caught the world’s imagination in pushing the boundaries on battery-powered vehicles, but traditional automakers are also getting into the act.
Early last week, Elon Musk tweeted that Model 3 has all regulatory requirements for production two weeks ahead of schedule and the handover party for the first 30 customers will be held on July 28. Going by the production schedule, 100 units of Model 3 would be out by August and 1,500 units by September, he said. He also revealed an ambitious goal of “20,000 Model 3 cars per month” by December.
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