Mysterious $25,000 Tesla Car

Mysterious $25,000 Tesla Car

Low-cost Tesla should appeal to price-conscious buyers and could be a prototype for Tesla’s Robotaxi

Tesla’s $25,000 mystery car — an even more affordable electric vehicle — has sent shockwaves through the automotive industry. The company’s commitment to innovation and sustainability has been a driving force behind its success, and the planned mass-market vehicle (which has been called “Model 2,” “Model Q” and “Model C”) is expected to further solidify Tesla’s position.

While Tesla TSLA, -0.87% has been tight-lipped about the car’s specifics, there are some details and speculations to delve into. Tesla’s new vehicle is expected to be a compact hatchback resembling a “shrunken down Model Y,” a departure from Tesla’s previous models which have been predominantly sedans and SUVs. This shift in design is likely a strategic move to tap into a growing demand for compact, city-friendly electric vehicles.

The price point is another significant detail that has been revealed. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has confirmed that this latest Tesla will be priced at $25,000, with a production target of 4 million vehicles. Compared to the higher prices of other Tesla models, which range from about $40,000 to $120,000, this model will be the most affordable Tesla yet.

In terms of performance, the new Tesla is expected to have a range between 250-300 miles on a single charge, most likely due to new 4680 batteries. Named for their dimensions (46mm by 80mm), they are a substantial upgrade — five times the energy capacity, six times the power and 16% more range — from the previous generation of cells used in Tesla vehicles.

Tesla has also made significant strides in battery manufacturing. The company has developed a new dry electrode technology and simplified the manufacturing process, which should help reduce costs and increase production speed. The increased energy capacity and range of the 4680 batteries, combined with their lower cost, should help make this inexpensive Tesla highly competitive in the compact-car market.

Despite being budget-friendly, the new Tesla is expected to have the automaker’s traditional screen and classy interior. While Tesla has not explicitly stated which features might be removed or retained, it’s safe to assume that some of the premium features found in higher-end models might be absent. Industry analysts and enthusiasts have speculated that the new model might be the company’s long-awaited Robotaxi — Musk publicly discussed this at the Giga Texas opening in April 2022.

Tesla’s Robotaxi would be a fully autonomous vehicle without a steering wheel or pedals. It’s more likely this new Tesla will be a gateway for the first vehicle in the robotaxi program rather than a fully automated vehicle itself. The main reason is that FSD (Full Self-Driving) still needs to improve before such cars could be released onto the streets. In 2022, Musk admitted that FSD was a huge challenge, stating that “the sheer amount of work required to do this (FSD) boggles the mind. It is way harder than I originally thought, by far.”

Whatever it’s called — Model 2, Q, C or something else entirely — the new car is expected to have a significant impact on Tesla’s market share and profitability. At a price of $25,000, it’s aimed at a new segment of consumers who are interested in electric vehicles but have been deterred by higher prices of current models. If Tesla can maintain a reasonable profit margin on this new entry, despite its lower price point, the increased sales volume could lead to higher overall profits and a greater market share for the manufacturer.

In the end, whether this $25,000 vehicle will become the transformative force it’s touted to be will depend on a multitude of factors, many of which are beyond the company’s control. But one thing is certain — the journey will be worth watching.

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