Tesla Drops Cheapest Model Y

Tesla Drops Cheapest Model Y

Tesla made a surprising move on Friday night, introducing in the U.S. a new Long Range RWD version of the Model Y, which replaces the previous Model Y RWD.

The car is available for order starting at $44,990 (plus $1,640 in obligatory fees), which is $2,000 less than the price of the retired RWD version ($42,990 after the recent price cut).



Since the new Tesla Model Y Long Range RWD is qualified for the full $7,500 federal tax credit—just like all Model Y versions—its effective cost is as low as $39,130.

It is not bad for a car that offers 320 miles of estimated EPA range, a top speed of 135 miles per hour, and a 0-60 mph time of 6.5 seconds (0.1 seconds quicker than RWD). The range difference compared to the RWD is 60 miles (53 miles when comparing optional 20-inch wheels).

Because now there are two Tesla Model Y versions—RWD and AWD—with the same Long-Range battery, we can see directly the cost of switching from rear-wheel drive to a dual-motor, all-wheel drive powertrain. It’s $3,000. The range will decrease marginally (about 10 miles or so), while the car will accelerate from 0 to 60 mph noticeably quicker in 4.8 seconds.

The market launch of the Tesla Model Y Long Range RWD is a sign of times. In early April, it was also launched in Europe. In the U.S., the model was expected right from the start in 2019, although it was canceled in February 2021 (officially in December 2021), as the company focused on the dual-motor versions. Now, as price and affordability are the top priorities, the least expensive long-range version seems to be the way to go.



Tesla Model Y Prices

Model Base Price Dest. Charge Tax Credit Effective Price
2024 Tesla Model Y Long Range RWD 19-in $44,990 +$1,640 $7,500 $39,130
2024 Tesla Model Y Long Range RWD 20-in $46,990 +$1,640 $7,500 $41,130
2024 Tesla Model Y Long Range AWD 19-in $47,990 +$1,640 $7,500 $42,130
2024 Tesla Model Y Long Range AWD 20-in $49,990 +$1,640 $7,500 $44,130
2024 Tesla Model Y Perf. LR AWD 21-in $51,490 +$1,640 $7,500 $45,630

* Tesla adds a Destination Fee (DST) of $1,390 and an Order Fee of $250 to all its models ($1,640 total).

Tesla Model Y Basic Specs

Model Drive EPA
Range
0-60
mph
(sec)
Top
Speed
(mph)
2024 Tesla Model Y Long Range RWD 19-in RWD 320 mi* 6.5 135
2024 Tesla Model Y Long Range RWD 20-in RWD 295 mi* 6.5 135
2024 Tesla Model Y Long Range AWD 19-in AWD 310 mi* 4.8 135
2024 Tesla Model Y Long Range AWD 20-in AWD 292 mi* 4.8 135
2024 Tesla Model Y Perf. LR AWD 21-in AWD 279 mi* 3.5* 155

* EPA Combined range according to Tesla

In terms of charging, all Tesla Model Y versions currently available can charge at up to 250 kilowatts and replenish up to 160 miles of range in 15 minutes, the company’s website says. The retired RWD version was able to get up to 170 kW.

Change RWD to Long Range RWD

It’s worth noting that Tesla has been preparing to switch from RWD to Long-Range RWD for quite some time. According to Elon Musk’s tweet, cars produced over the past several months already had larger batteries. The weight of the new LR RWD version is the same as the retired RWD version: 4,154 lbs, according to the website.



Soon, users will be able to unlock the full battery capacity and gain 40-60 miles of range, basically turning the RWD version into Long Range RWD. This software update is expected to cost $1,500-$2,000.

“The “260 mile” range Model Y’s built over the past several months actually have more range that can be unlocked for $1500 to $2000 (gains 40 to 60 miles of range), depending on which battery cells you have.

Working through regulatory approvals to enable this.”

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