The change to the Model 3 pricing options is part of a move by Tesla to simplify its lineup. More changes happened this week and it's now no longer possible to buy the $35,000 Model 3 online. The carmaker is now backing away from its online-only ordering approach with the standard Model 3.
Silicon Valley EV firm pulls the US$35,000 variant from its online store after just over a month on sale, following high demand for the US$37,500 Standard Range Plus.
Tesla is apparently moving to retire the $35,000 entry-level Model 3 before shipping the first units, though Autopilot comes standard and customers can now lease the vehicle.
The cheapest Model 3 available on Tesla's website is now the Standard Plus edition with 240 miles of software-limited range, selling for $39,500 with basic Autopilot included.
The electric auto maker plans to keep taking online orders for the Standard Plus Model 3, which starts at $39,500 and is now the lowest-price option available to digital consumers, along with higher-end models.
On its ordering website, Tesla's default options are for customers to make a US$3,000 down payment and spend a total of US$4,199 at signing of a three-year, 10,000-mile annual lease.
Tesla has been adjusting prices of its US -made cars in China to remain affordable in the country, a move also aimed at fending off competition from a swathe of domestic EV startups such as Nio Inc, Byton and XPeng Motors. A really interesting movie is the introduction of Tesla leasing.
It's important to highlight that "customers who choose leasing over owning will not have the option to purchase their vehicle at the end of the lease". They'll have to call or visit a store instead, and the vehicle won't come with Autopilot. Interestingly, Tesla said lease customers won't get the option to buy back their vehicles at the end of the term, because "with full autonomy coming in the future via an over-their-air software update, we plan to use those vehicles in the Tesla ride-hailing network", Tesla wrote. Other features like Tesla's onboard music streaming service, navigation with live traffic visualization and heated seats will also be disabled.