Talk of an affordable electric car from Tesla dates back all the way to 2009, and we have no doubt the company’s CEO Elon Musk had envisaged launching such a model when he co-founded Tesla back in 2003.

Now, with its federal loan out of the way and production of its award-winning Model S slowing ramping up, Tesla’s future model range is back in the spotlight.

We already know that Tesla’s next model will be the Model X, a crossover based on the platform underpinning the Model S. The last we heard, the Model X will arrive in late 2014.

Beyond this, we should see another sedan and crossover launched, this time based on a third-generation platform, currently referred to as Tesla’s ‘Gen 3’ platform. These two additions will be considerably cheaper than the Model S and Model X and have been described by Elon Musk as needing to be both compelling and affordable.

Speaking with Bloomberg recently, Musk said he’s neither going to leave Tesla [NSDQ:TSLA] nor see the company acquired until he can deliver cars with those attributes.   

“What the world really needs is a great, affordable electric car,” Musk explained. “I’m not going to let anything go, no matter what people offer, until I complete that mission.”

Speaking specifically about the Gen 3-based sedan, Musk said it would be priced below $40,000 and arrive on the market within the next three to four years. He also said it would have a driving range of about 200 miles on a single charge.

The Gen 3-based sedan has previously been reported to be similar in size to a BMW 3-Series and both lighter and cheaper to produce than the current Model S. Following the launch of the sedan, a crossover will then be added and once both of these are on sale Tesla will finally offer a successor to its original Roadster.


Follow Motor Authority on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.