Still waiting for that $35,000 Tesla Model 3? According to company CEO Elon Musk, it’s already here, though you’ll have to employ some suspension of disbelief to arrive at that number.
“Model 3 starting cost now ~$35k (after ~$8k of credits & fuel savings),” Musk tweeted on Wednesday.
If you go to Tesla’s order page for the Model 3, you’ll see the cheapest, rear-wheel drive with a mid-range battery starting at $34,850. Tesla breaks down the pricing as follows: The car itself costs $42,900, the incentives are $3,750, and gas savings are $4,300.
The good news is that the Model 3 did get a little cheaper. The starting price for that model used to be $44,000. A Tesla spokesperson told Electrek that it was able to reduce the price by $1,100 after the company ended its customer referral program, which cost the company “far more” than it realized.
The $35k number is a tough sell, though. The $3,750 reduction in price is nothing to sneer at, but back in 2015, Elon Musk explicitly said that the Model 3 will cost $35,000 without tax incentives, and he kept repeating it prior to the launch. Also note that the tax incentives will get cut in half on July 1 and are completely going away at year’s end. And while fuel savings in an electric car are definitely real, they’re very different than the car actually costing less from the start.
Musk made it clear that he hasn’t given up on making the Model 3 even more affordable. In a subsequent tweet, he says the company is doing everything it can to arrive at the actual $35,000 base price. “It’s a super hard grind,” he wrote.
We’re doing everything we can to get there. It’s a super hard grind.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 6, 2019
Musk has been employing this strategy for years, positioning himself and Tesla as the customers’ allies, with Tesla trying really hard to make the “affordable” electric sedan a reality.
This doesn’t change the fact, however, that Tesla originally marketed the Model 3 as a $35,000 car, but still hasn’t delivered on that promise even though the car officially launched in July 2017. Worse, that variant of the car isn’t exactly around the corner either.
Tesla has done it again.
The company that brought us insane mode and questionably sourced farting unicorns is back to remind the world that no one speaks to the soul of children trapped in adult bodies better than its childlike CEO. That’s right, Tesla just launched its own Amazon store, and you wouldn’t believe the goodies for sale.
In the mood for a $250 1:18-scale Tesla Model S toy car with “Steerable wheels”? Or maybe a $45 iPhone X case with the word “Tesla” subtly emblazoned across the side? The Tesla Amazon store has you covered.
According to Electrek, the store launched Feb. 5, and suggests a possible future where Tesla customers might order some vehicle accessories through the online retail giant. In the meantime, however, the page’s offerings are limited to model cars, hoodies, hats, phone cases, and coffee mugs.
Truly, we live in a golden age.
However, the question remains as to why Tesla only decided to list a bunch of overpriced nonsense accessories. Perhaps Amazon didn’t want the headache of storing actual Teslas in its fulfillment warehouses?
But hey, if anyone can chart that futuristic path it would be likes of a Jeff Bezos / Elon Musk team up. With their combined billionaire powers, there’s nothing those two can’t accomplish — just ask union organizers.
Now excuse me while I go play with my tiny diecast Model X. The falcon wing doors really open!
Who has two thumbs, rocket ships, and the stankest of memes? This guy, that’s who.
“Just bought stankmemes.com oh yeah,” he tweeted in what was either a great public-relations move for a burgeoning meme empire or a bold declaration that even the rich start dicking around online come Friday afternoon at the office.
Navigating your browser to stankmemes.com brings you to a page blank but for the following nugget of wisdom: “cause dankmemes was takne.”
Looking at the HTML of the page, however, reveals the following gem: “<!—You’re reading html comments on stankmemes.com!? Haha—>” A whois lookup of the website reveals it was indeed created today.
Should Musk, going forward, decide to populate his stankmeme page with some actual stank memes, we’ve got one all queued up for him:
Because nothing is more memeable than workers’ rights.
Elon Musk knows you want Tesla’s Model 3, but it’s just too expensive.
Tesla was able to sell nearly 140,000 Model 3s last year — and it hopes to make 7,000 of the sedans per week by the end of 2019. But don’t expect to see the price drop by much.
Right now, the problem isn’t ramping up Model 3 production, but getting the price down. Years ago, Tesla promised a $35,000 base model. Previously Musk said the cheaper model would get here around April or May, but that now seems unlikely. During Wednesday’s fourth-quarter earnings call, Musk sounded content with the current price of $45,000 (and that’s with a smaller battery).
Just this week, Tesla messed with the pricing, naming, and battery options for its two other cars, the Model X and S. This is all part of a plan “towards increased standardization, which results in significantly lower manufacturing cost.” Musk also noted that the Model 3 and Model S are now distinctly different sedans with a huge price gap between them.
Musk said the company is cutting costs everywhere in hopes of offering a cheaper Model 3 to the masses. To that end Tesla laid off 7 percent of its workforce earlier this month, a move that Musk said will “reduce our costs by about $400 million annually.”
Still, don’t hold your breath for a $35,000 car.
“There’s Musk’s tendency to reel off ‘white lies,’ including such infamous whoppers as the ‘private funding secured’ tweet, the resulting feud with the SEC, and production and delivery numbers that are not always based in reality, including the $35,000 Model 3 that was promised almost three years ago, but which still hasn’t left the drawing board (if it’s even there),” Investing.com senior analyst Clement Thibault wrote in an email.
Despite Musk’s wild ups and downs in 2018, the company once again had a profitable quarter, earning $139.5 million. That’s definitely down compared with the $311.5 million profit in the previous quarter, but Tesla’s calling it a success.