Figuratively speaking, Tesla’s Elon Musk sure knows how to hype a car up and then make it fly. Thursday night, the CEO did just that when he took the wraps off the long-awaited Model 3, Tesla’s most important car yet.
The sleek, high-performance Model 3 is designed to be Tesla’s first mass market electric vehicle because it’s priced at $35,000 to start (and that’s before tax credits.) That puts it in the range of the average price of a new car these days, unlike the Tesla Model S and Model X.
Here are the stats. The four-door offers at least 215 miles of range on a single charge (and that’s just on the base model.) It will hit zero to 60 in under 6 seconds. Tesla also says it has a five star safety rating. Musk says it will seat 5 people “comfortably” – comfortably being the key word. All Model 3 trims will come with available autopilot safety features. Of course, you’ll get some extras in the higher end trims.
At the big reveal at Tesla’s headquarters in Hawthorne, California, Musk also announced that more than 100,000 people placed pre-orders for the car sight unseen. Many drivers waited in long lines to put down a $1,000 deposit. If you do the math, Tesla’s already sold more than $4 billion at the base price of $35,000. However, it’s likely many of the cars sold with be the higher, more expensive trim models with all the trimmings.
The Model 3 is due to arrive in 2017. Oh and Musk says there is another part of the Model 3 story, but he’s saving that for later.