Tesla has announced a series of alterations to the Model 3 lineup, including the introduction of a leasing option for the popular all-electric sedan.
Moving forward, all new Tesla vehicles, including the Model 3, will come with Autopilot bundled as a standard feature, but prices of the automaker’s models will rise as a result. For example, the Tesla Model 3 Standard Plus was previously priced at $37,000 but will now start at $39,500 with Autopilot included. Adding Autopilot was previously a $3,000 option.
Perhaps of even more interest to customers in the United States is news that the Model 3 can now be leased. Tesla says that all Model 3 variants are available to lease and customers have the option of 10,000, 12,000, and 15,000 annual mile options.
Unlike lots of other vehicles which are offered through leases, Tesla Model 3 customers who lease won’t have the option to purchase their vehicle when the lease runs out. According to Tesla, this is because its vehicles will eventually be updated with full autonomy via an over-the-air software update and previously leased vehicles will be used in a Tesla ride-hailing network.
One final change to the Model 3 announced by Tesla relates to the Standard and Standard Plus models which effectively kills off the entry-level $35,000 base model. The model will no longer be available to purchase through Tesla’s online ordering system and only available over the phone or from a Tesla store. Future Model 3 Standard vehicles ordered will be software-limited versions of the Standard Plus.
This means they will have 10 per cent less range and not include features like Tesla’s onboard music streaming service, navigation, and heated seats. Customers of the Model 3 Standard will be able to pay for a software upgrade to get the Standard Plus but Tesla hasn’t said how much this will cost.
Last but not least, the Model 3 Long Range Rear-Wheel Drive will now only be available over the phone or from a Tesla store and not the Tesla website.