$35,000 Model 3 With Standard Battery Vanishes From Tesla’s Website

Fans have long been waiting for Tesla to honor its promise of bringing the $35,000 Model 3 to market, and when it was officially announced, hundreds of thousands lined up and paid a deposit to pre-order one.

When the Model 3 entered production in 2017, Elon Musk said the cheapest version would feature a standard battery and would arrive in early to mid-2018. Since then, launch dates for that model have been pushed back sine die. And now, Tesla’s website and configurator don’t feature any mention of the base Model 3 at all!

Until recently, the website listed the standard battery as arriving in “four to six months.” However, Electrek discovered the automaker’s website now lists only the Mid Range Battery, Long Range Battery, and Performance as versions of the Model 3. Mentions of the standard battery have vanished completely.

Naturally, this news sent fans into a frenzy, particularly base Model 3 reservation holders. Does this mean Tesla won’t sell the $35,000 Model 3 after all? We don’t know yet, but it’s clearly not a good sign for those who were waiting for Tesla’s affordable mass-market EV. The fact that the company has refused to comment on the change is not a good sign though.

While they has promised a $35,000 base price before incentives for the Model 3, the most affordable model right now costs $42,900 following a $2,000 price cut. Factor in the $3,750 federal incentive and Tesla’s “gasoline savings” estimated at $4,300 and the Model 3 with the Mid Range Battery and RWD costs a theoretical $34,850 (excluding $1,200 destination), as evidenced in a recent tweet from Elon Musk.

The trouble is that’s not the $35,000 Model 3 Elon Musk promised – not by a long shot. To add to the confusion, the company’s founder recently said during a conference call with analysts that he estimated the new version of the Model 3 would be available around the middle of the year, although he wasn’t very convincing.

“We expect to introduce the standard range Model 3 sometime during the middle of this year – it’s a rough, rough guess,” Musk said, adding that Tesla needed to improve the cost structure. “We’re working hard to improve our costs of production, our overhead costs, our fixed costs, just costs in general,” the CEO said.

That likely means Tesla can’t make the $35k Model 3, and that’s despite the fact that it recently laid off 3,000 employees supposedly to make the entry-level compact sedan viable.

We think it’s about time Tesla stopped beating around the bush and came up with an honest answer. This “will they, won’t they” game has gotten old already and its customers deserve better than that.

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  • Mike anonymous

    So let me know if I am understanding this correctly?…
    #1; the car WAS $35k but it’s not anymore?
    & #2; the car is not ‘actually’ $35k now (or anymore)?
    & #3; This tweet is still active, even though the option is no longer available
    (which might be false advertisement since it’s suggesting the $35k is available)?
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e9b3b1c9acf7a8286630a2f44a092e489b57c4691746da260a6f00cc30543611.png

  • Arthur Burnside

    Elon Musk has never made an accurate statement about anything, as far as I can tell

  • charlotteharry57

    With all these horrible crashes involving Teslas, weekly, at least, the company probably has more pending lawsuits than it’s worth and just can’t afford to offer the $35K model. I wouldn’t touch a Tesla with a 10 foot pole.

    • WHAT HORRIBLE CRASHES?

  • TheAmerican2point0

    Well isnt that surprising?

  • robotlogic

    They can sell a $35K Model 3 (Batteries not included).

  • PhilMcGraw

    I don’t get why Tesla wouldn’t try to introduce an even cheaper version (say around $30k) with a 200 mile range. And before someone replies: yes I understand why they won’t because they can’t even deliver on the $35k promise, but I’m saying they should go even lower than that. Most people won’t need more than 200 miles for an average week of driving. And by offering it at that price point they would basically drive the competition for electric cars into a lower price range which we haven’t yet seen.

    • Nick099

      GM is offering the Bolt from $36k with a 238 mile range.

      You do realize that it may not be possible to get what you want for the price you want right?

      • PhilMcGraw

        How many people bought the Bolt? I’ll clue you in: not many. For an electric car it’s a pretty pathetic attempt.

        And I do realize that you can’t get what you want for the price you pay, but what does that have to do with my comment? I’m merely suggesting that they lower their goals to break into a more affordable price range to start competing at the lower end.

        • Ryan

          What’s wrong with it, the lack or Tesla badge?

          • PhilMcGraw

            The Hyundai Kona EV is better than it in almost every aspect. So no, the lack of the Tesla badge is not what is holding it back.

            But good attempt at trying to pin me down as a cult member.

  • Mr. EP9

    It’s almost as if it never existed to begin with. Hmmm….

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