Tesla Model 3 - finally official as deliveries commence

Tesla Model 3 - finally official as deliveries commence

Tesla Model 3 - finally official as deliveries commence

Musk officially debuted the company's first affordably-priced electric vehicle, the Model 3, at a massive unveiling event outside the company's Fremont factory on Friday night.

While the Tesla Model 3 fitted with the standard battery with a range of 220 miles (355km), there is a longer range for $44,000 (Rs 28.22 lakh) which can travel up to 310 miles (500km). Tesla said Friday it has at least 500,000 advance deposits on the auto.

The more affordable Model 3 is a significant step for the firm, whose market value hit $49bn in April.

Similar to the Model X's giant front glass window, the Model 3 has a large window of its own, but it's to the rear.

Musk added that Tesla has received a net number of more than half a million reservations from prospective buyers, who paid a $1,000 deposit on the new model. "This is where we are for at least six months".

This initial batch was 50 cars, 30 of which were delivered to customers and 20 of which will be held back for engineering validation. The Model 3 rival BMW 3 Series is lighter weighing 1,475kg considering the batteries the Tesla needs to haul about. It takes 30 minutes to accumulate 130 miles' worth of charge when using one of Tesla's Superchargers, and will take on roughly 30 miles every hour it's charging from a home point.

For a lot of people, Tesla is electric cars.

The vehicle we drove was a long range model with all the options list ticked including the Premium Upgrade Package, featured leather seats (base models come with fabric) and a wooden dash inlay panel that spans the width of the cockpit and the aforementioned glass roof that provides the interior with a huge feeling of light and space. Musk first focused on the Model 3's interior, reiterating how autonomous vehicles will eventually make instrument clusters unnecessary, which explains why the dash is so simplistic with just one giant screen in the center.

The rush of pre-orders allowed Tesla to recently become the biggest U.S. auto company in terms of market capitalization, despite the fact that General Motors (GM) and Ford produce millions of cars per year and Tesla has yet to make a profit.

"Frankly, we're going to be in production hell", Musk told a crowd of hundreds of Tesla employees on Friday behind its assembly plant in Fremont, California.

Like its predecessors, the Model 3 is fully electric and on-board computers can handle some driving tasks.

At about $1,000 of deposit per reservation (it differs in different countries), it represents over $500 million and a potential of roughly $22 billion in sales at an average price of $42,000 per vehicle.

In terms of range, you'll get 345km on a full charge.

Success of the Model 3 could put in the rear-view mirror concerns about Tesla's prospects for growth.

The Tesla Model 3 is also expected to come to India - although don't expect to see one on our roads any time before 2018.

Along with the long-range battery, there is a list of features that can bump up the touted $35,000 sticker price.

Tesla boss Elon Musk: "Frankly, we're going to be in production hell".

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