Tesla debuts hotly anticipated Model Y

LOS ANGELES — Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk on Thursday night lifted the veil on the automaker’s latest — and perhaps most important — all-electric entry: The Model Y.

Due in spring 2021, the “standard range” version of the sport utility vehicle will cost $39,000, go from 0 to 60 mph in 5.5 seconds and travel up to 230 miles between charges.

“Dual motor all wheel drive” and “long range” versions are slated to arrive in fall 2020, priced at $47,000 and $51,000, respectively. Both will offer better performance and range.

Musk said he expects the Model Y to be on par with the Model 3 when it comes to safety.

“Five stars in every category,” Musk told an enthusiastic audience at the L.A. Design Studio in Los Angeles.

The Model Y is also performance-oriented, with a low-mounted battery pack providing a low center of gravity, Musk said.

“It has the functionality of an SUV, but it will ride like a sports car,” he said. “This thing will be really tight in corners.”

Musk said he expects Tesla to sell more Model Ys than its three existing models combined.

“Of any mid-size SUV it’ll be the one you want,” he said.

Karl Brauer, executive publisher and analyst at Kelley Blue Book and Autotrader, said the Model Y’s price and body style should resonate with the majority of today’s car buyers.

“This also makes the Model Y the most important vehicle in Tesla’s history,” Brauer said.

“Every aspect of the Model Y, from design to launch to production, has the potential to improve — or damage — Tesla’s reputation with mainstream consumers,” he continued. “A big win would serve Tesla well at this point in the company’s journey from start-up to serious automaker. The Model Y is ideally positioned to serve that role.”

But Tesla will need to move quickly, said Michael Harley, executive editor at Kelley Blue Book.

“Tesla needs to widen its customer base from Elon and EV fans to mainstream consumers,” Harley said. “The Model Y’s price and crossover design can do that, and if it enters the market soon enough, it will allow Tesla to keep pace with mainstream luxury brands like Audi, Jaguar and Volvo as they launch their own fleet of EV crossovers.”

During the reveal, Musk was joined on stage by previous Tesla models, including the Model S, Model 3 and Model X. They were arranged so that their letter and number designations spelled “S*X.”

“We are bringing s**y back quite literally,” Musk quipped when the Model Y joined the lineup.

Check back for updates.

Source: Mercury news
Tesla debuts hotly anticipated Model Y