Tesla celebrated the launch of the Model 3 with a special handover event of the first 30 production cars at their Freemont factory.
Elon Musk officially revealed to the world the final production version of Tesla’s entry-level model, with the Model 3 to come in two versions: the standard $35k derivative and the so-called Long Range model that starts from $44k. All prices are before incentives.
Let’s dive in in the specs then, shall we? The standard Model 3 will offer an EPA-estimated 220 miles of driving range (354km), 0-60mph in 5.6 seconds and a top speed of 130mph. Opt for the Long Range model and you’ll get 310 miles of range (498km), 0-60mph in 5.1 seconds and a 140mph top speed.
The two versions also have differences in their charging rates; standard models will gain 130 miles of range per 30 minutes of charging at Tesla’s Supercharger, with the Long Range gaining 170 miles for the same amount of time. The rates become 30 miles per hour from a 240V household outlet at 32A for the standard and 37 miles per hour for the Long Range.
As standard, all Model 3s will come equipped with a 15-inch touchscreen display, dual-zone climate control and textile seating among others. Each car will be equipped with all the hardware necessary for full autonomy as well, including eight cameras, forward radar and 12 ultrasonic sensors which also enable the collision avoidance and automatic emergency braking systems.
Tesla’s Autopilot feature is a $5,000 option and enables the Model 3 to drive itself within a lane, automatically change lanes, transition from one highway to another, exit the freeway and self-park. More features will be added through software updates in the future, with Tesla also promising full self-driving capability for an extra $3,000 in the future.
The exterior color palette includes Solid Black, Midnight Silver Metallic, Deep Blue Metallic, Silver Metallic, Pearl White Multi-Coat and Red Multi-Coat. All of them are $1,000 options, sans the Solid Black which is standard.
For those who want the interior of the Model 3 to be better equipped, Tesla offers the $5,000 Premium Upgrades Package which adds things like 12-way power adjustable front seats, steering column and side mirrors, heated seating, an open pore wood trim, two additional USB ports for the rear, a premium audio system, a tinted glass roof which takes the idea of Model X’s huge windscreen and reverses it for the rear passengers, LED fog lamps and a covered center console with docking for two smartphones.
The chassis utilizes double wishbones for the front and a multilink setup for the rear and comes with a set of 18-inch alloys as standard or 19-inch alloys as an option. Curb weight is set at 3549lbs (1609kg) for the standard Model 3 and 3814lbs (1730kg) for the Long Range derivative, with the weight distribution being 47-53 for the former and 48-52 for the latter. Tesla wants the Model 3 to score the highest safety ratings in every category as well.
“We’re building the cars as fast as we can,” said Elon Musk during the handover event. “But the production rate will move as fast as the slowest component in the whole mix [of 10,000 unique components]”.
Musk also said that their production facility would build half-a-million Model 3s and 100,000 Model Ss and Xs, without though providing a timetable. While Tesla hasn’t been clear about delivery dates, it’s pretty much common knowledge that mass deliveries are slated for 2018.