In context: Tesla’s vehicles are more popular than ever, and the carmaker finally seems to have its production problems under control. Now that the company is growing and operating in a relatively stable capacity, it has room to develop plenty of new vehicles. Currently, Tesla is working on the controversial Cybertruck, the Cyberquad ATV, and — the focus of today’s piece — the Model Y crossover.
The Model Y was first unveiled in March of 2019, and initial deliveries were later expected to begin sometime this Summer. However, in a somewhat surprising turn of events, Tesla has decided to move that release window up to the spring of 2020 (sometime in March, to be more specific).
This news comes from Tesla’s official website, as well as its most recent investor relations report, which states that the company will begin delivering Model Ys by the end of Q1 2020. Tesla feels comfortable making this decision due to how quickly its new Shanghai factory was built — the location is already expected to produce 150,000 vehicles annually.
Thanks to the Shanghai factory’s new production capabilities, as well as improved efficiency at existing factories, Tesla’s total vehicle production capacity should increase to 500,000 units by mid-2020 (up from 400,000). Tesla’s operations are likely to be impacted by the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in China, but only slightly — production in the country may need to pause for a couple of weeks.
If you’re not familiar with the Model Y crossover, it starts at about $53,000 (cheaper models will arrive at a later date), and it’s available for pre-order right now. As usual, extra options, such as a seven-seat interior and Autopilot functionality, will increase that price.
Depending on where you live, you might be able to soften the blow somewhat by taking advantage of local EV tax incentives. Federal incentives for Tesla vehicles have already been phased out, however.
As a bit of an Easter egg, the Model Y’s release will finish off Tesla’s “sexy” car line-up. The company already ships the model S, 3, and X, but the Y will finally complete the puzzle.