The Tesla Model 3 has finally reached production, albeit in small numbers. However, there's more to come from the electric-car maker's most affordable model.
While Tesla begins to ramp up production of the Model 3 in Long Range trim, with an EPA-estimated 310-mile range, the automaker is also readying a performance variant to debut sometime next year. Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to confront questions surrounding that version.
Probably middle of next year. Focus now is on getting out of Model 3 production hell. More versions = deeper in hell.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 30, 2017
The more variations of the car, the more stress is placed on the production line. Following the Long Range Model 3, the base Model 3 will become available this fall. It's the latter version that sports the affordable $35,000 starting price, but it arrives with an EPA-estimated 220-mile range.
The Tesla Model S has proved to the world that an electric car can become a world beater, and even be fun to drive in the process. The introduction of the Model S' dual-motor configuration, which has spawned numerous "D" cars, has led to the ultimate expression of electric-car performance: the P100D. A high-performance Model 3 would likely use a similar dual-motor design, though, we doubt it will reach the stratospheric performance levels achieved by the P100D. Some drivers have blasted to 60 mph in under 2.4 seconds.
In the meantime, Tesla's next big thing is supposedly coming this September. The automaker plans to reveal an electric semi truck, which will help fill out what Musk calls the Tesla Master Plan.