Tesla presentation slide from June, 2012 outlining 'Gen 3' platform variantsEnlarge Photo
Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA] CEO Elon Musk may have inadvertently announced the name of the electric car company’s planned fifth model, believed to be a high-riding, hatch-like car similar to the Model X but based on a third-generation platform debuting in the Model 3 small sedan due out in 2017.
In a recent Twitter post, Musk made mention of a vehicle called the Model Y. But almost immediately after making the post he removed it, leading to speculation that this was more than just a typo.
The post was made in response to a fan asking whether Tesla’s fifth model (the high-riding Model 3 variant) would be available with the ‘falcon wing’ doors that debuted on the recently revealed Model X.
Musk’s reply was: “there will be a Model 3 and a Model Y. One of the two will.”
We first learned of Tesla’s fifth model in 2012 when the company presented a slide with a schedule of planned model releases (above). The slide showed that Tesla plans to launch a new sedan and crossover after the Model S and Model X, with the new sedan being the Model 3 and the new crossover most likely being the Model Y.
But the story doesn’t end there. A later post, also deleted, acknowledged what had been widely expected: that there will be a version of the Model X crossover with a lower-capacity battery than the 90-kilowatt-hour pack offered at present. Musk said it will be “something like a 70,” in his post and revealed that it would “probably” around in a year.