Registration opens today for Tesla’s Model 3, the longer range, cheaper electric vehicle (EV) that the company hopes will repeat the success of its existing luxury models.
Energy media outlets have focused over the past week or so on the EV-maker and stationary storage provider’s decision to stop selling its 10kWh back-up version of Powerwall, its residential battery. However, automotive and EV news sites have been reporting that some customers were already joining queues outside their local Tesla stores on 30 March to be among the first in line to reserve their Model 3.
Production of the cars will begin in late 2017, with batteries from the Nevada Gigafactory which has already started producing battery packs for Powerwall. The Model 3 promises to be a practical option for a family car, offering range in excess of 200 miles at a price of around US$35,000.
In a recent interview, analyst Dean Frankel of Lux Research said the launch of the Model 3 and comparable rivals such as the Chevy Bolt, with similar range and price bracket, would mark the coming of EVs into the mainstream and a “second wave of electrification”.
The extended range and lower price was, Frankel said, “really the threshold going forward and that’s really when we expect EVs to pick up – the Tesla Model 3, the Chevy Bolt, hitting a price point of 30,000 and a range of 200 miles. If you can populate that target and put as many dots at the intersection on the x and y axes, you’ll see vehicle electrification really explode.”