The Tesla Model Y Is Now $9,000 Pricier
Image credit: Tesla
Tesla is dropping the single-engine Standard Range RWD version of the Model Y, which started at $ 39,990, making the $ 48,990 Long Range version the most affordable option.
The standard range RWD Model Y had only been in stores since early January 2021 before it was cut.
Tesla dropped the $ 35,000 Model 3 after just a few months of sales - and after years of being promoted as an example of an affordable electric vehicle.
Abrupt changes in Tesla model prices are nothing new, but this one may just have set a record for the shortest amount of time a vehicle variant was available. Tesla unveiled a Standard Range RWD version of the Model Y in the first week of January 2021, which has a range of 244 miles and a starting price of $ 41,990. That price was dropped to $ 39,990 just a few days ago. The debut of this model was a bit of a surprise in itself; Elon Musk had publicly indicated months earlier that the company was unlikely to offer such a variant, believing the range would be "unacceptably low" in order to be competitive. Even so, the Standard Range AWD version of the Model Y could be ordered on the Tesla website.
That single-engine variant is now gone with no explanation for its cancellation, meaning the cheapest Model Y is now the long-haul model, which starts at $ 48,990. It's not an insignificant hike for those looking to get into a Model Y, but it offers 326 miles of range for that $ 9,000 award.
Image Credit: Hearst Owned
It's still unclear how many examples Tesla sold in that six-week availability window, but the sale alone may have been enough motivation to kill the variant. Tesla's desire to reduce production costs through less differentiation on the assembly line may also have played a role.
The main consequence of the move is that Tesla will now find it much harder to compete against newcomers like the Chevy Bolt EUV, Volkswagen ID.4 and Nissan Ariya, all of which arrive this year. These three models will all have starting prices well below the $ 50,000 mark.
The departure of the cheapest Model Y mirrors that of the short-lived Model 3, valued at $ 35,000, which was available online February through April 2019. After that, it was only offered through Tesla stores or over the phone - if you even know you should ask for it.
Should Tesla have a cheaper version of the Model Y on the menu, even if it had a smaller range? Let us know in the comments below.
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